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Table of Contents
Notes on contributors
,OI CjoD WE ASPIRE, BUILD AND 0 1'
VOL. 20 NO. 1
Copyright reserved and reproduction without permission strictly forbidden.
5. Grenada, an Island State, its History and its People
Beverley A. Steele
44. "A Flag on the Island"
45. More on Truth, Fact, and Tradition in Carriacou
Donald R. Hill
Extracts from The Grenada Handbook
60. (i) Fedon's Rebellion 1795-6
66. (ii) War Period 1914-1919
69. Bibliography on Grenada Works of Sociological Interest
71. Publications of the Department
UNIVERSITY OF THE WEST INDIES
R.M. Nettleford, Director of Extra-Mural Studies (Editor)
Lloyd Braithwaite, Pro-Vice Chancellor, U.W.I., St. Augustine, Trinidad.
Sidney Martin, Pro-Vice Chancellor, U.W.I., Cave Hill, Barbados.
Roy Augier, Pro-Vice Chancellor, Mona, Jamaica.
J.J. Figueroa, Professor, Faculty of Education, U.W.I., Mona, Jamaica.
G.A. Alleyne, Professor, Medical Research Council, U.W.I., Mona.
Lloyd Coke, Department of Botany, U.W.I., Mona.
Neville McMorris, Department of Physics, U.W.I., Mona.
Patricia Williams, Department of Extra-Mural Studies, U.W.I., Mona, Jamaica.
All correspondence should be addressed to:
Department of Extra-Mural Studies,
University of the West Indies,
Mona, Kingston 7, Jamaica.
We invite readers to submit manuscripts or recommended subjects which they
would like to see discussed in CARIBBEAN QUARTERLY. Articles of Caribbean
relevancy will be gratefully received.
United Kingdom 2 (Sterling) + 50p Postage
(a) Jamaica $4.00 (J.)
(b) Eastern Caribbean $10 (E.C.) + 50c Postage
U.S.A. and other countries $8.00 (U.S.) + 50c Postage
Subscription orders may be forwarded to the Editor or to the Resident Tutor at
University Centre in any West Indian Territory served by this University.
This Issue of
is dedicated to
on the achievement of
February 7, 1974
NOTES ON CONTRIBUTORS
BEVERLEY STEELE Resident Tutor, UWI Extra-Mural Department, Grenada was
former lecturer in Sociology at St. Augustine Campus, is married to a Grenadian.
She has provided extracts from her Ph.D thesis based on Grenadian Society.
ROLSTAN ADAMS Grenadian graduate of UWI, Mona, literary critic and poet also
wrote the National Anthem of Grenada. He now lectures in English at Rutgers
DONALD HILL Professor and Assistant Curator of the Department of Education of
the American Museum of Natural History. Spent a year in research among
Carriacou islanders in 1971-72.
GRENADA, AN ISLAND STATE, ITS HISTORY AND ITS PEOPLE
Grenada is a thing of beauty and a joy forever. "This reminds me of the
old saying: "See Naples and die." But, like our great patriot, the late Hon.
TA. Marryshow, I say: "You may see Naples and die, but see Grenada and
Few parts of the world combine so many features of interest and significance for
the social investigator as the islands of the Caribbean. They have been described as the
sociologists' laboratory, where every social problem is exemplified with several
variations for comparison. Grenada, one of the most interesting islands, has been
by-passed by many as a place for profitable fieldwork in the Social Sciences. This is to
the detriment of the researcher and the Science in general, for Grenada with its
chequered history, its eras of mingled opulence, barbarity and freaks of fortune, its
complex ethnic composition, and more recently its position as a tourist haven and one
of the last small outposts of the British Empire, is a fascinating phenomenon.
Grenada is the smallest of the Windward Islands. It straddles the twelfth parallel of
latitude and lies 61 degrees west longtitude. It is 75 miles southwest of St. Vincent,
and 85 miles north of Trinidad. Its area is 120 square miles, or 76,888 acres. Grenada
is at the maximum 21 miles long and 12 miles wide.
Although smallest in size of the Windward Islands, Grenada's population in 1960
was 88,700. This makes it the most densely populated island in the Southern Carib-
bean, except Barbados. The population is fairly evenly spread throughout the island,
with over 80 per cent of the population classed as rural. The population of the capital,
St. George's, was about 7,000 in 1960.2
Ovate-shaped, except for the Point Saline peninsular which juts toward the
southwest, the island is mountainous. Its main ridge tranverses from north to south,
but nearer to the western than to the eastern coast. The slope of the land is therefore
more gentle to the east and southeast of the island. From the central backbone of
mountains, cross-ridges run to the sea both to the east and to the west. These ridges,
which are heavily wooded, frequently enclose pockets of lower land sheltered from
prevailing winds, and valleys of great beauty and fertility. These valleys and pockets of
land, along with the sloping hillsides, are the arable land, as there is no coastal plain.
There are, however, two flat areas in the island: Levera Lowlands, which extend to
Grenville on the northeast coast, and a region on the southwest coast.
The coastline is rugged. The persistent Northeast Trade Winds have driven the tides
of the southern coast deep into the soft alluvial valleys that alternate between the
mountain ridges. The consequent erosion has imparted to the coastline many bays, and
on the southeast the coastline has a haircomb appearance similar to Norwegian fjords.
Except for a little limestone in the north, the island is of volcanic origin, being one
of the many exposed peaks of a vast submarine ridge which strikes eastwards and
northwards from the Peninsular of Paria in Venezuela, through the West Indies to
Hispaniola, where it forks southerly to Jamaica and across the Caribbean to the main-
land of Spanish Honduras, and northerly through Cuba to the Yucatan Peninsular.
The island has several lofty peaks, five of which are above two thousand feet.
The highest peak is Mount St. Catherine, which is 2,749 feet high. There are many
extinct craters in the topography, three of which are filled to make crater lakes, and
one lagoon. The three crater lakes are Gran Etang, 1,749 feet above sea level, and Lake
Levera and Lake Antoine on the flat. The lagoon which is a part of St. George's
double-winged harbour is also a volcanic crater. According to A.H. Verrill:
Once upon a time what is now the harbour belched forth fire, smoke and
cinders, for it is nothing more nor less than an extinct volcano crater with
one side blown away to let the ocean in.3
In 1867 proof of the nature of St. George's harbour was given. The following
account is given in the Grenada Handbook, 1946:
Between 5 and 5.20 o'clock p.m. (on November 18th) the sea having been
previously very calm, a sudden subsidence of the waters in St. George's
harbour took place, the sea falling about five feet and exposing a reef in
from off the Lagoon and adjacent shores. In a few seconds, with a slight
rumbling noise, the water over the 'Green Hole'4. began to boil and
emit sulphrous vapour. This part of the harbour, it should be remarked,
was in the days of the French settlement, an excellent anchorage and
careening ground, but there was at the time of this eruption hardly
three feet of water in it, showing that there has since been an upheaval of
the land in that vicinity. Immediately after this ebullition of the 'Green
Hole' the sea in the harbour rose rapidly to about four feet over its normal
high-water mark, and washed violently up to the head of the Carenage.
The phenomenon was three or four times repeated, and great damage was
done to buildings and boats, but no lives were lost. The mason work on
the 'Spout' which projects into the sea, was completely demolished, pre-
senting the appearance of having been twisted round in a whirlpool, and
the 'Green Hole' was completely filled up.
The wave was experienced along the Western seaboard as far north as
the town of Gouyave, where it appears to have attained its maximum
dimensions, rising so high at Dougaldston estate as to cover the bridge at
the mouth of the river and inundate the adjoining canefields.
At 9 p.m. there was a slight shock of earthquake, and another at 1
a.m. on the following morning, the motion being perpendicular in both
It should be noted in connection with this eruption that at 2.40 p.m.
on the same day at the Island of St. Thomas, there was a severe earth-
quake, followed by a tidal wave, fully fifty feet high, and that there was
concurrently a volcanic outbreak at the neighboring island of Little Saba,
which emitted smoke and lava.5
The Handbook also states that along with the eruption of Mount Pelee in Marti-
nique, on three occasions, May 7, 20 and June 9, 1902, the waters in the Carenage
were sympathetically affected.6
Also indicative of volcanic activity in the past are the numerous gigantic grey
boulders that litter the land. The abundance and enormity of these in some areas make
moving them uneconomic; at the same time it prohibits the introduction of
mechanised farming on those lands. Grenada also possesses a few mineral springs.
Grenada is well watered by streams, and well furnished by springs of fresh water.
Aside from the fertile land and natural beauty, however, Grenada has no other natural
resources; not even swift running rivers or high enough falls to provide a source of
electricity. Grenadians are hoping for an oil strike, but although drilling operations
commenced some time ago, there is no sign that "Black Gold" will be forthcoming.
The temperature varies between 700 Farenheit and 900 Farenheit, and the humidity
between 68 per cent and 79 per cent. Rainfall is abundant. Northeasterly Trade Winds
blowing across the island are deflected upwards by the central mountains. Thus
cooled, they deposit rain ranging from 30 inches in the dry area of Point Saline
Peninsular, to about 200 inches in the centre of the island, the normal downfall
averaging between 60-100 inches.7 The Point Saline Peninsular, while rugged, is not
high enough to wring water from passing clouds, and, consequently, has little rainfall.
The rainfall pattern shows an alternation pattern of dry and wet seasons, roughly
corresponding to the first and last halves of the year.
Soils are of the red, red-brown, yellow-brown and grey varieties. With careful
tending, they produce good crops. The widespread planting of tree crops over the
centuries has saved Grenada from the excessive soil erosion often found in other
Grenada has a more diversified agriculture than any of the other Caribbean islands
and unlike many of the other Caribbean territories, there is still a demand for its major
exports. Although sugar and rum were Grenada's products early in its development,
other crops were introduced which proved to be more suitable. The primary agri-
cultural exports are bananas, nutmegs and cocoa.8 Grenada also produces other spices
such a cinnamon, ginger, cloves and vanilla.9 Coconuts are grown for the local pro-
duction of cooking oil, laundry soap and stock feed.
Tropical fruit and ground provisions are grown for home consumption, and the
forests produce valuable timber such as bullet wood, locust, mahogany, and cedar.
Grenada is self sustaining in poultry, and a small fishing industry exists that could
profit from expansion.
Grenada has a number of small industries, including rum distilleries, ice factories, a
cigarette factory, aerated water factories, a beer factory, ice-cream factory, and a milk
refinery. A local factory manufactures soap, coconut oil and coconut meal, there is a
nutmeg factory on the island,' and Grenada is gradually entering the food processing
field in respect to other produce.
Becoming a major "industry" is tourism. Grenada has many fine beaches, the most
famous of which is the Grand Anse Beach with its miles of white coral sand. Several
large hotels are to be found in close proximity to this beach, and holiday cottages
proliferate in the area. In 1968 there were about 37,000 visitors to the island, with an
estimated revenue of $7 million. In 1967, fifty-two cruise ships visited the island. In
spite of this, Grenada does not have the facilities of some of the other islands such as
Barbados that are necessary to support a large Tourist Industry, and an economy based
partly on tourism and partly on agriculture would be more viable than an economy
based entirely on tourism.
Grenada is divided into six parishes St. George (26.16 square miles), St. John
(14.99 square miles), St. Mark (9.07 square miles), St. David (18.43 square miles), St.
Andrew (34.67 square miles) and St. Patrick (14.43 square miles). Carriacou and Petit
Martinique, islets of the Grenadines are dependencies of Grenada, and are considered
as a separate parish.
The southwest sector of Grenada is more developed than the rest of the island.
Besides the capital being located there, this area also embraces the shopping areas, the
hotel developments, and several luxury housing estates which are the homes of
wealthy retired Canadians and other foreigners, as well as of the better-off Grenadians.
St. George's, the capital, also has the only deep water harbour which is landlocked
and well-protected. In a scurrilous article on Grenada, Frank Trippit admitted that
Grenada was "so pretty, so lush, so quaint, so balmy, so easygoing so goddam
picturesque."'' To such an island, St. George's, the capital and seaport is a good
introduction. It is the banana loading port, as well as a stop for most tourist liners on
Caribbean Cruises, and other ships of all nations. The inner section of the harbour
gives berth to the numerous inter-island schooners so important to communication and
trade in the Lesser Antilles.
The capital, St. George's, is built upon the cliffs of the hills that form the pro-
tection for the harbour. Philip Sherlock speaks almost lyrically of its
Georgian houses .'(which) look out on a bay of indigo blue that dances
with glittering points of reflected light.'2
Another apt account describes St. George's as:
a large village that has evolved easily and slowly into a small country
town the houses. are built of stone: fine, solid dwellings, with
graceful balustraded staircases running up to pilastered doorways support-
ing fanlights and pediments. The burnished knockers and door-knobs and
letter-boxes reflect the morning sunlight 3
The capital itself is built on (a) steep crater's rim the broken
circumference, emerging from the water in bluffs, ascends under its load of
houses and churches, to unite with the forested slopes inland Old
fortresses lie along the hilltops commandeering the town, and, on the
escarpment of the crater's rim that ends into a final knoll before its steep
plunge under water the old French Fort Royal rears its defences. 4
To this may be added an account of St. George's by A.H. Verill in 1915:
Attractive, quaint and picturesque as seen from the approaching ship. St.
George's loses none of its charm when one steps ashore and wanders about
its streets. Toil might perhaps be a better term than wander when applied
to St. George's, for the thoroughfares are steep beyond words; they are
often carried by flights of steps up the slopes, and in one place a tunnel
has been cut through the hill to provide an easier and more level way.s1
The passage of time has not levelled the streets of St. George's and the flights of
steps still survive connecting the terrace of roads. The story goes that you can tell a
Grenadian in Port-of-Spain or London by the way he lifts his feet.
Other towns of Grenada include Grenville, the second largest town, Concord, a
receiving depot for mace and nutmeg; Gouyave, the situation of a large nutmeg
factory; Sauteurs, where is to be found Leaper's Hill, a cliff over which the Caribs are
said to have jumped rather than surrender to the French in the Seventeenth century;
and Victoria in the heart of several plantations. In addition to these towns, there are
several villages, some located along the main roads, and some relatively isolated in the
Although Grenada is so hilly, it is said to have one of the best networks of roads in
the Lesser Antilles. Grenada's airport is at Pearls a village just outside of Grenville, in
the north of the Island.
The first inhabitants of Grenada seem to have come from Trinidad or Venezuela.
Professor Ripley Bullen 16 describes the first inhabitants as agriculturalists. They came
to Grenada about A.D. 165, and were followed by the Arawaks about A.D. 700. Just
Pre-Columbus the Arawaks were succeeded by the warlike Caribs. The Caribs killed the
Arawak men and took the women as concubines or as second wives. When Columbus
sighted the island, Bullen estimates that there were numerous Caribs on the island.
After the discovery of the island by Columbus in 1498, the Carib inhabitants were
left in undisturbed possession of the island for over a century. In 1609 a company of
London merchants attempted to form a settlement, but were so harassed by the Caribs
that they were compelled to abandon the attempt and return to London. In 1626 and
1627 both the French and the English claimed the island, but not until 1650 did the
French land on the island and establish a permanent settlement. The French under
Duparquet landed 200 adventurers who purchased the island from the Carib Chief for
"some knives and hatchets and a large quantity of glass beads, besides two bottles of
brandy for the chief himself.""1 Shortly after, however, the Caribs began hostilities
against the French. The French retaliated, subdued the Amerindians, killing many and
driving the rest to the north of the island. The Caribs encamped on the summit of a
steep cliff surrounded by high precipices, which could only be climbed by a narrow
secret pathway. At last the French discovered the way up, and took the Caribs by
surprise. A fierce fight took place before the French subdued the Caribs. Those of the
Caribs who had survived the battle preferred to hurl themselves to death from the top
of the cliff rather than surrender. The town that was later to grow up in the vicinity of
this cliff was called Sauteurs, or "Leapers" after this event.1 8
The Caribs who had not taken part in this battle retaliated by killing every isolated
Frenchman they saw, and by raiding French settlements. The Governor, tired of this
harassment, collected his forces, marched to the Caribs' headquarters and slew them
without regard for sex and age. The first massacre of 1651 was followed up and the
Caribs were reduced to such a small number that they were never again to disturb the
peace of the colony. Bullen states that pottery remains substantiate, that some few
were in existence in the St. Mark's Valley and other parts of north Grenada as late as
The only element of Amerindian culture that seems to have survived till today are
certain words. Alistair Hughes20 notes that such words as ajoupa (a thatched hut),
titere (edible small fish) and Mabooya (an evil spirit) which are of Amerindian origin
are in current use in everyday speech in Grenada.
In 1657 Duparquet sold Grenada to the Comte de Cerrillac. in 1664 Grenada
became the possession of the French West India Company, and when this was dis-
solved in 1674, Grenada was annexed to France. When, at the beginning of the
Eighteenth Century, Pere Labat came to Grenada, he described it as a small French
colony, not very enterprising or developed. The Dominicans of which Labat was a
member, owned an estate near Victoria, and the good priest had come to Grenada to
see how this estate was getting on. He returned to Martinique
in a ship laden with a cargo of cotton and tobacco from this loyal
outpost of the old French monarchy, with its gallant soldiers, its pious
cires, and its negro slaves, christianised and instructed by a colonial
The French also cultivated indigo, and at the beginning of the Eighteenth Century
this seems to have been the main crop. In 1700 it is recorded that there were fifty-two
indigo plantations on the island.2 The production of this fell shortly after, however,
and sugar, first introduced from South America in 1702 took precedence. Grenada
began to flourish with the introduction and cultivation of sugar. African slaves were
imported by the French to work the plantations, and as the industry spread, the cane
fields were pushed back into the virgin forests of the interior, and even cultivated on
steep hillsides. Grenada's prosperity, however, was to make it a prize of war.
During the Seven Years War, the island was captured by Swanson, and was formally
ceded to the British Crown by the Treaty of Paris in 1763. The island was governed as
a unit with Dominica, St. Vincent and Tobago. In 1771, Dominica got its Government,
and in 1776 Grenada became a separate colony with Tobago, St. Vincent being
accorded a Government of its own.
On the conquest of Grenada, English laws and institutions were at once introduced.
Many place-names, including the names of the Parishes, were changed. Estates changed
hands, and some of the French slaves took advantage of the confusion following
acquisition to escape to the bush. The Government, however, invited the French to
enter the new House of Assembly (in minority proportions), suspending, in deference
to their religion, the usually required declaration against Transubstantiation. The
diplomacy of the Government was not appreciated by the newly arrived English and
Scotch planters, who spoke out against this policy of the Government. There was
much conflict among the people of different origins, and one Governor remarked that
the population at this time was "a strange discordant mass of heterogeneous
animals. easily irritated to do mischief, but seldom to be roused to do good."23
The French were to temporarily regain the colony under Count d'Estaing in 1779,
during the War of American Independence. During this period the English on the
island were treated shockingly by the French. The Governor was taken as a prisoner to
France. He was not only deprived of all his possessions, but was humiliated in his
absence by his clothing being sold in the market-place of St. George's. In general there
was pillage and destruction, and it is said that greater excesses were only prevented by
the influence of a French officer, Count Dillon. Grenada was to remain French for
four and a half years, being handed back to England in 1784 by the Treaty of
Now Anglicanisation of Grenada was attempted with greater fervour. Unlike the
previous experience, the French were denied all political rights, the door of the
Assembly being closed to them by the re-imposition of the oath against
Transubstantiation. Churches and church property of the Roman Catholic Church in
Grenada was confiscated and given to the Protestant Churches, or acquired by the
Crown. Statues, altars and "Popish emblems" were ordered to the flames. Some of the
French population migrated from Grenada, rather than suffer these deprivations.
Under a cedula of 1782, the island of Trinidad, which then belonged to Spain, issued a
generous invitation to Catholic planters to settle in Trinidad. Many French planters
from Grenada took advantage of this offer, and left for Trinidad with their capital and
slaves. More were to follow after the events of 1795.
With the advent of the Revolution of 1789 in France, West Indians with French
backgrounds were not unaffected by the revolutionary ideas. First Toussaint
L'Overture led a successful revolution in Haiti, the slaves seizing independence, and the
white plantation owners forced to flee the country. Victor Hughes established a
revolutionary Government in Guadeloupe, forming a plan to recapture the islands of
Martinique, St. Lucia and Grenada. The French population of Grenada, chafing under
English suzerainty, were receptive to Hughes' envoys who came among them to
instigate rebellion. A core of revolutionaries appointed Julien Fddon, a coloured
planter, as their leader. Fedon not only had the support of his own free coloured
group, but also had the support of the slaves, the majority of whom were more at
home with French culture and language than with English.
M.G. Smith points out, too, that
Under prevailing laws, civil and political rights held for Europeans only, so
that free coloured and black folk suffered severe disabilities. FNdon's revolt
may thus have aimed at replacing white rulers by free coloured and blacks.
But the triumphant slave revolt in Haiti, and the revolutionary ideas of
freedom and equality, could hardly avoid encouraging slave support. 24
The revolution began with an attack against the British in Grenville. All the British
captured were slaughtered. This was followed up by an attack on Gouyave, where the
British were taken captive. The British Governor, trying to return to St. George's from
Sauteurs by boat was captured, and held hostage with the prisoners from Gouyave at
Belvedere Estate, which was owned by F1don. Meanwhile, all the French population
began taking refuge at Belvedere.
Fedon had threatened to kill the Governor and the 51 other hostages he held if any
attack was made upon his fortifications at Belvedere. In spite of this, the British did
attack his camp on top of an almost inaccessible mountain, and Fidon carried out his
threat of execution. The Governor and all fhe hostages expect three (a clergyman, Rev.
McMahon; a doctor, Dr. John Hay; and a Mr. Kerr) were executed. Moreover, the British
failed to capture Fddon's stronghold.
By March 1796 the French rebels were in control of almost all of Grenada, having
fortifications at Belvedere and in three other places. The British were confined to St.
George's and a camp at Calivigny. The rebellion was only crushed under a new
Governor, who was assisted by his own troops and troops lent by the Spanish
Governor of Trinidad.
The British captured all the French leaders except Fddon himself. On the grounds
of high treason some were executed,2s and others were deported to Honduras. All
properties belonging to the rebels and whoever else was suspected of collusion, were
confiscated. Fidon hid for some time in the woods, and then was completely lost sight
of. Lee Fermour remarks that "it was as though he had been lifted into the sky as
Enoch and Elijah and borne away to some Negro garden of the Hesperides"26 It is
generally believed that F6don was drowned while trying to escape to Trinidad by boat.
From beginning to ignominious end, F6don and his followers defied the British for
two years. The British referred to this period as "The Brigands War", while depending
on their sympathies, Grenadians hold Fidon to be a hero, or a monster.
Fedon's defeat meant that French power in Grenada was crushed. Despite the
decline of French influence and efforts to Anglicanise Grenada, however, the remains
of French influence survive to this day. For many years a French patois continued to
be the language of the remaining French families, and their slaves.
Today, French survives in place-names and family-names. M.G. Smith claims
that Grenadians retain a French cuisine, certain French folk songs and other items of
folk lore.27 But the main legacy of French colonization is the predominance of
Roman Catholicism in Grenada.
Fedon's rebellion left Grenada in ruins, and a long time was to elapse before the
colony really recovered. The civil liberties formerly enjoyed by French colonists were
severely curtailed, and free-coloured continued to lack political rights and to suffer
civil disabilities. In the face of this, many more people of French background left
Grenada for Trinidad with the capital and slaves, and the British had to try to attract
planters and capital from her other West Indian colonies, or from England to restore
these losses, as well as the losses sustained during the revolt. In the early part of the
nineteenth century there were also religious troubles in Grenada, mainly centered
around the establishment of the Anglican Church as the State Church. A schism within
the Roman Catholic Church on the island also caused disunity among Catholics on the
island, until it was resolved in 1840.28
In spite of the determined efforts of the Government to give the Anglican Church
precedence, the Catholics were in the great majority, and there were sufficient Roman
Catholic elite with enough power to put up opposition to the pressures against their
religion. Mr. Hesketh Bell, writing at the end of the Nineteenth century estimated that
two-thirds of the population was still Roman Catholic, but there were pressures to
forsake this religion.
Quashie, seeing that the upper classes are nearly all Protestants, has
come to the conclusion that it is more respectable to belong to the
Anglican Church; so, as soon as he owns a pair of boots, which in his
opinion gives him a right to the title of esquire, he forsakes his good padre
and the church of his youth, and appears next Sunday, as a member of the
Anglican or Methodist community.29
In spite of the pressures to adopt Protestantism, most of the population did remain
and eventually the authorities reconciled themselves to this fact. In 1832 the
Legislature passed a bill removing all disabilities from the free black and coloured
inhabitants, and enabling Roman Catholics to serve in the Legislature. The Catholics
began to receive Government grants towards building churches in 1846, and the
Anglican Church was disestablished in 1874.
Unlike some of the other British territories, Emancipation was marked by orderly
behaviour in Grenada. Fr. Devas claims that this was mainly due to the influence of a
Catholic priest, who himself was at loggerheads with his own bishop, and the leader of
the schism, (op. cit.), but who, at the same time, was the idol of all the slaves on the
island.30 After emancipation, the planters had to cope with a scarcity of labour, and
the abolition between 1846 and 1854 of the protection for West Indian sugar on the
British market. The effect of freedom upon the slave was to fill him with a desire to
work for himself, and with a distaste for the wage labour the plantations were offering.
The quantity of uncultivated land in the interior of Grenada, and the ease with which
it could be bought, rented, or squatted, upon, caused a heavy migration away from the
estates. Again, unlike most of the other islands, many large plantations that had
dropped out of production were cut up and sold to whoever had the purchase price.
Not only were the plantations short of labour due to this migration of ex-slaves to the
interior, but at this time there began emigration of Grenadians to Trinidad.
Even though the planters were in difficulty, especially as Grenada was not ideally
suited to large-scale sugar cultivation, the planters tried to hang on to a sugar
economy, which was also a way of life to them. They tried to obtain the necessary
labour through indenture schemes. In 1839, 164 labourers were imported from Malta.
Between 1846-1847, 438 Portuguese were brought from Madeira. In 1849, there
arrived 1,055 liberated slaves from Africa. None of these schemes were successful, as
the labour migrated, died, drifted into other occupations, or started own-account
farming. More and more sugar estates were abandoned, and by 1856, 47 estates had
closed down. The output of sugar fell from over 4,000 tons in 1846 to under 1,000
tons in 1881. John Candler, a visitor to Grenada around this time records of this
Grenada, once flourishing, is now almost a bankrupt colony. The small
free-holders, lately emancipated from bondage cultivate their own
grounds, and work for very little on the estates. Only 2,000 labourers, it is
said, are daily employed on all the estates in the Island, and no estate
makes more than 150 hogshead of sugar. Property is fallen immensely in
value and large estates, having good dwelling houses, buildings and
machinery on them are now selling'for next to nothing Several good
properties have been lately taken on lease by Creole residents at rents
varying from 50 to 100 a year. The Creole labourers are doing pretty
well; no complaints, provisions cheap, wages ten pence per day. The small
free-holders are a numerous class and are prosperous.31
The most successful indenture scheme was that under which the East Indians were
brought to Grenada. Between 1856 and 1878, 3,033 East Indians were brought into
the island. The East Indian labour allowed several abandoned sugar estates to be
reclaimed, but these workers came too late and in too few numbers to save the sugar
industry. By 1870, sugar had ceased to support the local economy, its place taken by
The English had made Grenada a free-port in 1787, and the Spanish had in the
course of trading introduced the cocoa tree to Grenada from the Amazon and
Equador. Some of the free slaves had been cultivating cocoa, and it was later taken up
by some of the planters, gradually increasing in popularity as its profitability grew
more obvious. Around 1850 nutmegs were introduced into Grenada from the Dutch
East Indies. The nutmegs thrived, and other planters soon adopted this crop,
along with the cocoa. Planters used immigrant labour to work on the cocoa
nutmeg estates, or a system of share-cropping with Negroes.
In 1833 Grenada was included in the Windward Islands, along with Barbados, St.
Vincent and Tobago. In 1875, the Grenada House of Assembly, not without some
protest, voted itself out of existence. This move was seen as necessary as the
composition of the Assembly had become ludicrous. The Assembly had twentysix
members, elected from a roll of one hundred and thirtysix eight persons elected six
members from among themselves to the Assembly. As exclusive as the Assembly was,
the members did not trouble themselves much about the government of the country.
They seldom attended meetings, and little interest was stimulated in affairs of the
Government, even at election time. It was thought by the Colonial office that Crown
Colony Government would be more in the interest of the island at this time. In 1877,
therefore, Crown Colony Government was established. There was a Legislative Council
composed of an equal amount of official and nominated members. During succeeding
years, the constitution underwent several changes, although the form of Government
In 1885 St. George's had Guy Fawkes Day Riots. These were the result of the
suppression of the practice of lighting bonfires in the market place. The police had
some difficulty in controlling the crowd, and there was some damage to public
property as well as a few injuries. In 1895 the Sendall Tunnel connecting the two
sections of the town of St. George's32 was completed.
The outbreak of World War I had two important effects on Grenada. First was that
after a temporary boom in the economy, there was a depression. More important,
however, was the fact that 4,742 Grenadians volunteered for active service in the war,
and these volunteers on their return to Grenada, brought with them new ideas and a
desire for self-assertion and self-expression which had been largely denied them under
Colonial rule. It was in this post-war period that Grenadians began to clamour for
self-government. One of the main spokesmen of these new ideals was Albert T.
In the 1920's, poor prices for cocoa combined with senility of the cocoa trees
caused a decline in cocoa production. This added to the effects of the depression
caused by the war on the economy. During the war, however, the Government had
sought to revive the sugar industry in Grenada, due to a sugar shortage in the island.
The drier, low-lying southern area of the island was put under cultivation by a locally
financed company. The company was given Government protection, and a factory was
opened at Woburn in 1935. It is the only sugar factory operating on a commercial scale
in Grenada today, but does not produce enough sugar to meet local needs.
In 1925 the Constitution of Grenada was modified to permit a margin of elective
representation on the basis of restricted property franchise. In 1936 the number of
elected members was brought equal to those nominated by the Governor, although the
legislators nominated by the Governor still had a majority with the Governor's vote to
ensure legislative passage. In 1944, 4,005 of about 27,000 adults of the population
were entitled to vote by virtue of their property qualifications.34
Many Grenadians also fought in World War II. During this war, there were several
sea battles off the coast of Grenada. The event of the war that made the biggest
impression on Grenadians, however, was the sinking of the Island Queen.
On 5th August, 1944 two schooners, the Island Queen and the Providence Mark left
Grenada for St. Vincent, with a total of 56 passengers, plus crew. A well-known
Grenadian was being married in St. Vincent, and a crowd was going up for the
wedding. Others were taking advantage of a Bank Holiday for an excursion. On the
way, the Island Queen was passed by the Providence Mark, and this was the last
anyone saw of the Island Queen. Ships and aircraft made a prolonged survey, but not a
trace was found. Many theories were propounded as to the fate of the vessel. Many
grieving relatives, in an effort to come to terms with the news, subscribed to an
impossible theory that the Island Queen was captured by Germans.
A German submarine embarked some of her own crew and passengers on
the Island Queen and sailed her to South America. He thought Hitler was
among the Germans. He was of the opinion that the young people were
disembarked in some part of South America and would in time
There is an interesting psychological aspect to stories like these about the kid-
napping of the Island Queen the teller of the tale would insist that the Island Queen
was painted black before it was redirected to parts unknown.
The official enquiry, headed by Magistrate Henry Steele reached the conclusion
that the schooner had caught fire and burnt. Most people discount this as a possibility,
however, as a fire would probably have been seen by the Providence Mark and
inhabitants of the Grenadines. Also, a fire most likely would have produced bodies or
survivors. The most likely story is that the Island Queen stuck a stray mine and was
blown to smithereens. The harbour at Martinique was heavily mined during the war,
and it is not impossible that one of these mines worked loose and floated into the
Grenadines. This theory is supported by the fact that in July, 1945 a mine landed on
the beach at Windward, Carriacou, and exploded with the aid of the unsuspecting
beachcombers, who tried to open it with a piece of iron pipe. Nine people were killed
in the incident. After the incident in Carriacou, sailors and fishermen were warned to
look out for mines, and as a result of this vigilance, three or four mines were sighted
near Grenada, and were exploded by gunfire from British Naval Vessels.
In spite of the threat of mines and apprehension by German submarines, there were
many schooners in the waters during this period, as the war years were the zenith of
inter-island migration to Trinidad. So many Grenadians migrated there at this time
that in 1942 and 1944 Ordinances were passed to prohibit entry of manual workers
into Trinidad, unless for agricultural work. Grenadians also migrated to Venezuela,
Curacao and Aruba at this time. One of those immigrating to Aruba was Eric Matthew
Gairy. Gairy, who had started his career as a teacher, served an oil company in Aruba
as an office clerk. In Aruba, Gairy became involved in the politics of labour, and was
eventually deported from Aruba for labour agitation. So it was that new ideas were
again to come to Grenada from outside the society, as they had in the case of the
revolutionary ideals of the French Revolution, and the desire for self-government that
had come with the return of veterans of the World Wars.
Grenada had been fairly prosperous during the war. Cocoa and nutmeg prices rose,
and with the fall of Indonesia in 1943, Grenada enjoyed a virtual monopoly of the
Allied nutmeg market. The cost of living was to rise sharply, however, and in 1946 the
rising cost of living stimulated the longshoremen of St. George's to organise the First
Trade Union in the country the Grenada Workers Union. Another branch of this
union was started at Gouyave, both unions seeking now to enroll other categories of
workers in addition to the longshoremen. No interest was yet taken in the agricultural
workers. The two unions formed the Grenada Trade Union Council, which for the first
time in 1950, attempted to negotiate wage increases for estate workers.
In 1950, an island-wide union, the Grenada Manual and Metal Workers Union
(G.M.M.W.U.) was formed under the leadership of Eric Gairy, who had lost no time in
involving himself in Grenadian politics after his deportation from Aruba. Gairy's entry
into politics heralded five years of labour unrest, and drastic changes in the political
structure of Grenada.
Although Gairy had first appealed to workers in the towns, he soon claimed to
speak for all Grenadian workers, and the workers soon gave legitimacy to his claim.
During 1950 Gairy took up the cause of the agricultural workers.
For a century, a traditional relationship had existed between the planter and the
To replace sugarcane with cocoa in the Nineteenth Century, the pro-
prietors had let out lots to their ex-slaves who undertook to plant and tend
the cocoa trees thereon. When the cocoa trees began to bear, the proprietor
resumed control of the plot, usually giving the cultivator another on the
same terms. Bananas (bluggoes), which shaded the young cocoa, the
cultivator reaped for himself. In addition, he was free to plant other crops
on the plot for his own use, and enjoyed other rights on the estate,
including rent-free residence, use of a small garden and non-commercial
crops such as breadfruit, avocado, and mangoes. He could also help himself
to fallen coconuts, dead wood, and timber for house building, and so forth.
Workers grazed their stock on the estate, which then bought the manure.
They had the first claim on estate employment, while the estate had the
first claim on their labour. Wages were low, but these customary rights met
most of the workers' subsistence needs.
Both planters and workers found this symbiotic relation convenient and it
was maintained for generations on each estate 36
This began to change around 1930.
To economise during the depression, planters increasingly withdrew
privileges that the workers had come to regard as their rights.. The
traditional paternalistic relations between planter and "peasant" gave way
to uncertainty, mutual distrust, and eventually to bitterness. As these
changes developed, the basic solidary relation to which the society owed
its cohesion was progressively undermined Owing to the outbreak of
the war and the demand for unskilled labour on the war bases in Trinidad,
the full effect of these changes was not apparent for several years.3
It was not only the depression of the 1930's that had caused a change in the
traditional pattern on the plantation, however. High prices for cocoa and nutmeg
during World War II had made estates a good investment, and some of the estates had
been acquired by foreigners and wealthy local East Indians. Often these new pro-
prietors were unaware of the traditional obligations of Grenadian planters to their
workers. Finding their properties encumbered with people claiming customary rights,
some sought to reduce their commitments by either evicting the workers, or reducing
In any case, the time was ripe for labour unrest, given the poor social and economic
conditions in Grenada and the wealth being concentrated in a few hands. M.G. Smith
points out that the historical, paternalistic and symbiotic relationship that existed
between the planter and the peasant had served to restrict the scope for mass action by
the agricultural workers, as well as to make the workers hesitant to do this, due to the
traditional relationships on the estates.38 Now these relations were to be discontinued,
and the people changed their allegiance from the planter to the leader of their union.
Managers of estates had repeatedly frustrated wage demands from the G.M.M.W.U.
during 1950, and had also refused to pay sufficient deference to Gairy as the leader of
a union with wide support. On 19th February, 1951 Gairy called a general strike,
which lasted for a month. An official report by the Labour Department describes the
events as follows:
Grenada experienced a strike of agricultural workers which caused an
upheaval such as not been known within living memory. Workers who
showed a disinclination to go on strike were intimidated by their
co-workers, by the unemployed and by the unemployables; estates were
looted in broad daylight, while management stood by unable to interfere;
valuable produce trees were deliberately damaged; estate buildings,
medical health centres, school and privately owned residences were burnt;
rioting and bloodshed occurred; the small police force appeared totally
inadequate to deal with the situation, and it became necessary to seek
police assistance from St. Lucia and Trinidad. Units of the British
Navy were hastily summoned, and a small garrison of British Troops were
stationed here for months afterwards.39
Gairy himself witnessed little of this, as he had been taken into custody early in the
disturbances, and taken to Carriacou for safe keeping. The police were under the
supervision of a retired British Brigadier, summoned from Barbados. He includes in his
report the observation that as there had been no rioting or looting in Grenada for 156
years, the events of 1951 instilled a sense of insecurity and fear in the middle-class
people, which still persists. The Brigadier also comments that the employers of labour
were not ready to accept Trade Unionism, while the members of the Unions did not
understand the mechanics of collective bargaining.40
As a result of the strike, the lot of the worker improved greatly. Wages were
increased sometimes as much as thirty-three and a third per cent, and provision was
made for paid leave. There was also progress in the constitutional area. After the
disturbances, the Legislative Council was changed to include three nominated members
and eight elected members. Universal suffrage was introduced, illiteracy no longer
being a bar to enfranchisement.
In the first elections under this new constitution, Gairy's party, the Grenada United
Labour Party, an outgrowth of his union and of which he had made himself perpetual
head, won a resounding victory, receiving over 70 per cent of the vote.
The riots of 1951, M.G. Smith claims, formed the basis for a further split in the
population between the folk and elite. The folk and the elite were already split, the
folk having a French and African based culture and the elite subscribing to a culture
based on British culture. Now, the elite did not accept the leadership of Gairy. "Many
planters", he says, "refused to recognize him, while many workers endowed him with
the awe of charisma. Others resented his methods and distrusted his leadership, longing
for the 'good old days' "41 foday Gairy finds most of his support from the working
classes, while the 'old elite' descendants of the planters, form the core of the
opposition Grenada National Party.
The years following 1951 were marked by further demands by the G.M.M.W.U. on
behalf of agricultural workers, threatened strikes, and a series of work stoppages on
individual estates. A few houses were set on fire at night. But the government sought
to prevent a recurrence of the looting of 1951 by placing heavy penalties on the
possession, receiving, purchase or sale of stolen goods. The police force was also
strengthened and its efficiency and morale improved. A volunteer militia of 200 was
trained, and British frigates cruised nearby.
Reconciliation in the society came through education and compromise. Trade
Union leaders were advised on Trade Union techniques by a New Labour Advisor, and
legislation modernising the local labour laws was passed. The planters organised them-
selves into a union, and labour relations improved. The 1953 strike which began in
November came to an end on 24th April 1954 when the Employers Union voluntarily
increased the pay for agricultural workers, and announced that customary perquisites
that had been enjoyed by their workers would be continued so as to augment their
The conflict between planters and workers was now resolved with the promise of
higher wages and with the return of the traditional patterns of relations with its rights,
obligations and loyalties. It seems that rather than a new society, the workers had
really wanted a return to the status quo prior to the 1930's, and not a radical change
in the social structure. In spite of the attitudes of the workers, however, the events of
1946-1954 had succeeded in bringing about important modifications in the Society.
They had introduced to the people a more "modern" polity with adult suffrage, Trade
Unionism, and Political Parties. In the years following 1954, Gairy was to maintain his
power position in the society by his activities as Chief Minister, and for a brief time,
Leader of the Opposition Party.
Grenada has been struck by several hurricanes through the years. The last hurricane
to strike the island was Hurricane Janet, which hit Grenada on 22nd September, 1956,
causing severe damage to the island. The blow to the economy was great, as seventy
percent of the nutmeg trees were destroyed. As it takes five to seven years for a
nutmeg tree to mature, and twelve to fifteen for it to come to full bearing, there was a
sharp decline in nutmeg production for some years after the hurricane, and a gradual
recovery, with production only recently reaching pre-hurricane levels. In addition to
nutmeg damage, it was estimated that only two percent of Grenada's cocoa trees were
undamaged. As an interim measure, the Grenadian farmers planted bananas, and these
thrived, and today bananas are the major agricultural export. So was a new agricultural
industry born out of the devastation of the hurricane.
Other results of Janet were the death of 120 people, and injury to many more. Over
one half the houses were destroyed or severely damaged. The Telephone, Electricity,
and Water Services were disrupted, and water in the various reservoirs was polluted.
Grenada also lost her pier in this hurricane. In all, the damage to the island was
estimated at US$5 million in food crops, U.S.$ 10 million in housing, an equal amount
in road-ways and heavy public works, and U.S.$5 million in personal effects. This
estimate did not include the annual recurrent losses to farmers until their tree crops
grew back. Hurricane Janet was also responsible for the extra numbers of Grenadian
migrants to the United Kingdom. and to Trinidad at this time. Grenadians took full
advantage of the fact that Trinidad had relaxed her immigration controls in anti-
cipation of the Federation.
Grenada was a member of the First West Indian Federation from 1958 to 1962.42
When Trinidad withdrew and moved into independence, Eric Williams offered to admit
any of the smaller islands of the defunct Federation into association with Trinidad on
the basis of a unitary state. Only Grenada showed interest. This issue was to be made a
platform for the next election.
But Grenada was never united with Trinidad. Many influential groups in Trinidad
feared an influx of Grenadians into Trinidad especially as considerable unemployment
existed in that island. There was also other obstacles to a Unitary State. Instead
Grenada was granted Associated Statehood with Great Britain in 1967, with complete
control of internal affairs.
In the elections held after the granting of Associated Statehood, the Grenada
United Labour Party was returned to power. The elections held in 1972 was
also won by this party. Grenada was granted full Independence from Britain on 7th
February, 1974, and Eric Matthew Gairy, leader of the G.U.L.P. became the first
Prime Minister of the island.
In the population of Grenada today are people of varied backgrounds and cultural
heritages. To understand the nature of Grenadian society, a knowledge of the
historical events responsible for the building up of its population, and the factors
leading to the dispersal of thousands of Grenadians through the Caribbean territories,
Canada, the United States and Great Britain is essential. For convenience I have used
the useful framework formulated by G.W. Roberts43 for the description of Jamaica.
Little is known of the numbers of Amerindians inhabiting Grenada when the first
slaves were introduced. When Columbus discovered the island in 1498, the Carib
population is said to have been "Numerous,"44 but after several fierce battles with the
French during the mid Seventeenth Century, they were almost extinct by 1705.
The French, the first colonisers of Grenada, introduced Negro slaves into Grenada
to grow indigo and sugar. A census taken by the French in 1700 showed the popula-
tion to comprise 257 whites, 53 coloured persons, and 525 slaves. In the next 80 years
the population grew rapidly through immigration. By 1753 the count had grown to
1,263 whites, 175 free people of colour, and 11,991 slaves.45 The white population
consisted not only of plantation owners and employees, but also of soldiers garrisoned
there, and a number of priests.
The population of Grenada was to expand even more rapidly under the British.
Even though many Frenchmen with their slaves left the island after its conquest by
Britain in 1763, and moreso after its reconquest in 1779, this loss was made good by
the importation by the British of slaves and white personnel to work on the expanding
sugar plantations and soldiers to man the garrisons. In 1771 a census disclosed a count
of 1661 whites, 415 free coloured people, and 26,211 slaves.46 In 1779 there were
said to be 35,000 slaves.47
The second population phase began in Grenada with Fedon's Rebellion. After this
rebellion was put down in 1797, many more Frenchmen and their slaves emigrated to
Trinidad, attracted by the offers of the Cedula of Population issued by the King of
Spain in 1783, as a result of the proposals of Roume de St. Laurent. The British again
made good these population losses through the further importation of slaves from
Africa, and also of planters and slaves from nearby British islands. Importation of
slaves ceased with the Abolition of the Slave Trade in 1808. By then, Grenada's
population was 29,000 and comprised 25,000 slaves.48 The slave population
decreased, as it did elsewhere through this period until Emancipation due to the failure
of amelioration measures to drastically reduce the high mortality rates among the
slaves, and their low fertility rates. By 1827 the slave population of Grenada had fallen
to 24,442 with 770 whites and 3,600 freemen of colour.49
The third phase of population begins with Emancipation. The number of slaves for
whom compensation was paid by the British Government was 19,009.50 The slaves,
emancipated in 1833, were not legally free in Grenada until 1838. After this date,
many migrated mainly to Trinidad attracted by the higher wages being paid on the
plantations there. No figures are available for Grenadian immigrants in particular, but
it is estimated that between 1835 and 1846, 11,000 West Indians entered British
Guiana and 10,000 entered Trinidad.s Some of these immigrants were attracted by
bounties until 1846. Under the bounty system the owners of schooners introduced
labourers from the small islands to Trinidad and British Guiana as speculation, em-
ployees paying premiums to the captains for the labour they brought. The active
encouragement of Creole immigration through the offering of bounties was abandoned
with the establishment of regular immigration from India. Encouragement was hardly
needed, in any case, as the larger territories such as Trinidad exerted sufficient "pull"
factors as higher wages and land which was available for purchase of squatting, to
ensure a steady stream of small island immigrants.
Creole labour, it is reported, consistently refused to sign contracts, but were usually
provided with a house and garden, and medical attention on some estates. Soon many
acquired land either as squatters or freeholders, and disassociated themselves from
estate labour.52 The British Government was reluctant to encourage migration from
one colony to another, especially where it involved the signing of contracts between
labourers and employees. The British Government feared that unscrupulous
immigration agents might take advantage of the negroes, naive from their recent con-
dition of slavery.s3 However, the negroes were canny of contracts, and knew how to
get by immigration restrictions. Negroes from the small islands have proved that when
free immigration is restricted, illegal migration becomes a fact of life. This period also
saw the repatriation of many white employees of the sugar estates ruined through lack
of good management, sufficient labour, and the removal of the protection by Great
Britain for West Indian sugar.
In the search for plantation labour, a search necessitated by the freed slaves for-
saking this type of labour whenever possible and steady emigration of labour out of
Grenada, the Grenadian planters partook of the various immigration schemes54 for-
mulated by plantation owners in the Caribbean. Although the actual amount of labour
entering Grenada was small in comparison to other territories such as British Guiana
and Trinidad, and insignificant in terms of population growth, I shall deal with
indentured and associated migration in some detail, as the descendants of some of
these workers are the main concern of this thesis.
Roberts and Byrne55 have pointed out that there are some reservations to be held
on available data on indenture and associated migration into the Caribbean. Indeed
there is some difference between the figures they give for immigration into Grenada,
and figures gleaned from other sources. However, the figures given by Roberts and
Byrne are regarded with respect, and the differences between them and the other
sources are in most cases negligible.
The first migrants to arrive under indenture schemes were liberated Africans. These
were Africans who had been destined for the South American territories, the United
States or Cuba, where the Slave Trade still continued to supply chattels for the
plantations. These Africans had been set free upon the capture of slave ships by the
British Navy, and transported to nearby British colonies, Sierra Leone or St. Helena.
The Grenada Handbook records that in September, 1836, three slave ships were cap-
tured off the coast of Grenada by H.M.S. VESTAL with 1,250 slaves aboard,
All of whom were landed and apprenticed to planters, an Act being sub-
sequently passed, by direction of the Home Government, for their pro-
tection 280 more Africans were added to the population under similar
circumstances in May 1837, H.M.S. HARPY having captured a slaver
between Grenada and Trinidad.56
During his visit to Grenada, John Candler witnessed the arrival of one of the ships
carrying liberated Africans.
A ship named the ATLANTIC came into harbour a few hours before us,
bringing 259 captive Africans, men, women and young people from Sierra
Leone. We went on board unexpectedly to the Captain and the surgeon.
All well; one captive dead on the passage: the ship was spacious, clean and
well ventilated, and the poor rescued captives from slavery were taking
their plentiful morning meal of cassava and salt fish. They seemed con-
tented and happy, and clapped their hands in token of joy. Some of the
former rescued slaves rowed the boat that took us to the ship and con-
versed with the new immigrants, and in rowing us back to the shore burst
into a cheerful African song. The whole scene of the ship was a touching
one, long to be remembered.57
Candler also notes having seen near Annandale "African settlers recently landed,
among whom is Romeo, a Median boy, who begins to speak English."58
M.G. Smith notes that in 1849 over 1,000 Africans came to Grenada from Ijesha in
Yorubaland, and settled in Grenada after their indentures expired.59 It would appear
that most of the Africans arriving in Grenada came directly off of British ships after
the capture of slavers by the British. However, some were also indentured at the
British centres for receiving liberated Africans at St. Helena and Sierra Leone.
Liberated Africans were deposited at these centres and maintained for three months
before they had to make the choice of maintaining themselves there, or accepting
indentures to the Caribbean.
The British Government sanctioned immigration of indentured Africans into
Grenada in 1850. The tenth Government Report on immigration stated that after
careful consideration of wages, exports, the numbers employed, the cost of conveying
immigrants and the practicality of preventing squatting.
It does not appear that any great inconvenience would arise from send-
ing an occasional ship with African immigrants to one or other of these60
smaller islands. To more than this their importance does not entitle
Thus while Grenada received the largest number of liberated and indentured
Africans of the smaller islands, the bulk of the African immigrants went to the three
major colonies of British Guiana, Jamaica and Trinidad. Together these three
territories accounted for 90% of the immigration. In the years between Emancipation
and the beginning of East Indian indenture in Grenada, free African labour was a vital
factor in the survival of such sugar plantations as were left. The Grenada Handbook
states that with the increased labour resulting from African and Indian indenture,
several abandoned estates were even reclaimed.62
Most of the Africans entering Grenada were liberated slaves, and at first these were
merely apprenticed, but due to a general tendency for them to forsake the estates to
which they were assigned and wander off in search of other work, or to become
subsistence farmers, after 1842 they were indentured for one year upon their arrival,
and after 1850 for two. Later they were indentured for three years.63 Laurence
reports that in general:
African immigrants were normally satisfactory workers, the Kroomen
being outstanding Their health presented no special problems. The
great majority were simple field labourers, but in the early 1840's a few
artisans arrived from Sierra Leone as free immigrants, and some found
work as domestics Many of the liberated Africans were children.64
It was generally accepted that Government could, indeed should, do little
specifically to help these people beyond allocating them to trustworthy
employees and then preventing physical neglect or ill treatment. Such
immigrants were normally allowed free houses and provision grounds, and
sometimes certain allowances in kind. But the liberated Africans had none
of the contractual privileges which free immigrants enjoyed.6s
Laurence also noted that African immigrants usually settled down quickly and
successfully to life in the West Indies, where they usually found a number of ex-slaves
who had been born in Africa, and where the employers were used to employing
Africans. But the process of assimilating the newly arrived Africans took longer than is
usually assumed. The planters often regarded the free Africans as homogeneous with
the rest of the black population, but the free Africans felt themselves different, as
indeed they were. When the free Africans left the estates after their period of in-
denture, they tended to congregate in tribal groups and form their own villages.66
Although the number of Africans entering Grenada was relatively small, the
tendency of free Africans to be exclusive also occurred. Up to the present, three
villages in Grenada, La Mode, Concord and Munich exist, which were largely settled by
the free Africans coming off of the estates. These are different from other Grenadian
villages in that there is a greater persistence of African cultural traits there. Among the
more noticeable is the more detailed and elaborate Shango rituals, and the prevalence
of more "knowledgeable" obeahmen. Very little research has been done on the free
Africans in the Caribbean. One reason is that these immigrants blended phenotypically
with the Creole population. Also officialdom very early ceased to regard these people
as immigrants and took no special notice of them such as was later taken of the East
Indian immigrants. Another reason why the free Africans escaped notice was that in
time they intermarried with the Creole population, and the distinction between the
two groups became further blurred. It is likely, however, that many items of African
culture in the West Indies remain in the contemporary society because they were
brought here by these free Africans, who passed them on to the Creole population.
Items of culture passed on in this way were stronger than those inherited from slavery,
and often replaced a former custom practised by the ex-slaves. Shango is again, a good
example. M.G. Smith writes:
At the turn of the present century the representative African cult of the
Grenadian folk was a type of ritual known locally as the Big Drum, the
Nation Dance, or simply SARANCA and contained several elements
which have since been assimilated by Grenadian Shango; but Big Drum
rites were not associated with spirit-possession, which was not then
practised. Shango in Grenada was originally the ritual of certain closed
communities of Africans and their descendants. Within these com-
munities67 Yoruba was the spoken language, and numerous elements of
Yoruba culture were preserved, including kinship elements, and the basic
concepts and rites of Yoruba polytheism. Later, when the Africans and
their descendants started to move out from these communities, Creole
Grenadians showed great receptivity to their cult, and its spread outwards
from these three centres was marked by syncretisms of form and content,
numerous traits being taken over from the Nation Dance as well as from
Catholicism, until Shango is now the representative form of African ritual
It is possible, that other elements of culture besides the Shango cult have also been
preserved in this way.
With the cessation of the Brazilian slave trade in 1852, the main source of liberated
African immigrants to the Caribbean dried up. The stream of migration continued a
few years longer due to the efforts of the British Government to relieve the congestion
in the receiving centres at Sierra Leone and St. Helena. In any case the planters were
not now so eager to get this type of labour. Roberts reports that:
In Grenada and in St. Lucia satisfaction was expressed with the first
arrivals. But soon opinions changed, and the general question of the advis-
ability of sending any additional labour to the territories was raised. In
Grenada, though the Governor reported in 1852 that the planters were
'particularly grateful to Her Majesty's Government' for the Africans
received, in the following year he reported with regret that the people had
become 'squatters and independent settlers', and therefore the island was
turning its attention to East Indian immigrants instead ... In fact the West
Indies showed little interest in introducing large numbers of Africans after
1852 preferring instead East Indians.69
The free Africans from Sierra Leone and the Kroo Coast had always been reluctant
to go to the West Indies as indentured workers, and this reluctance increased with the
passage of time. Therefore with the cessation of the Cuban Slave Trade in 1866 and
the Abolition of Slavery in the United States soon after, the immigration of Africans
into the British Caribbean came to an end.
Concurrent with the African immigration into Grenada was that of the indentured
workers from Malta and Madeira. Although Madeira was Portuguese, by the middle of
the Nineteenth Century, Madeira had close ties with Britain. Donald Wood recounts:
After the rebellions of 1715 and 1745, some Jacobites had sought refuge
in this isolated and Catholic island: they were the founders of a British
community that grew in numbers and economic influence as the taste for
Madeiran wines, the only bulwark for the prosperity of the island, spread
during the century. During the Peninsular Wars, convalescent officers in
Wellington's army went to Madeira to recuperate...
Yet by 1840 Madeira was no longer thriving; one of those unpredictable
changes of taste had taken place which puzzle the historians of wine-drin-
king; the fortified Madeirans were no longer in fashion. Wine prices fell,
and by 1845 the vineyards were neglected. Distress grew in the country-
side, that proved to be a mild foreshadowing of the disaster of 1852 when
'oideum', the cholera of nineteenth-century viticulture, appeared in the
island and wiped out the ancient vines.
In Madeira, then, were people used to agricultural labour under a hot
sun, who were known to British mercantile interests and who, moreover
were not averse to emigrating to escape from poverty.70
Madeirans began to emigrate to British Guiana in 1841. Labourers from Malta
arrived in Grenada in 1839, and labourers from Madeira in 1846. Both schemes were
regarded as failures. The Grenada Handbook reports that
In December 1839 the experiment of importing labourers began by the
immigration of 164 labourers from Malta, who proved a complete failure,
and in 1841 their contracts were dissolved by mutual consent, and the
greater number of them went to Trinidad, some few remaining in the
island and becoming hucksters and porters. This was followed up in
1846-47 by the introduction of 438 Portuguese from Madeira; but here
again the attempt was a failure, for though they ultimately proved an
acquisition to the colony as shopkeepers and assistants at the sugar works,
as agricultural labourers they were not a success.71
Due to the position the Portuguese assumed in Grenadian society, their numbers are
usually overestimated. Of course there may have been more immigrants than were
noted in The Grenadian Handbook. Roberts and Byrne72 give a total of 601
Madeiran labourers indentured for Grenada. Roberts also points out that
It is impossible to trace all entrees of Portuguese (from Madeira) into the
West Indies, as a substantial proportion of these immigrants, coming at
their own expense, were not recorded.73
In comparison with Grenada, the nearby island of St. Vincent received some 2,102
labourers from Madeira, while St. Lucia received no official immigrants under this
scheme.74 By far, the largest number of Madeirans went to British Guiana, with some
32,216 being officially noted.75
The health of the Madeiran immigrants was not good. The sickness rates and
mortality of those coming to the Eastern Caribbean were high, especially in the first
few months, possibly due to the conditions of famine and poverty in Madeira, which
may have reduced the immigrant's "capacity to withstand the rigours of sudden
contact with field labour and malaria in the tropics" 76 As they acclimatised and
became accustomed to the work, their health improved. However, most Madeirans
seem to have abandoned field labour within three years of their arrival. In any case,
the Madeiran had been stimulated to migrate by conditions of famine in Madeira.
When this famine ended, the sudden stream of immigrants to the Caribbean was
suddenly dried up.
Planters in the West Indies had been profiting from East Indian labour during the
periods of African immigration and immigration from Madeira. Learning of the
advantages of this scheme, the Grenadian planters were soon eager to obtain Indian
workers for their plantations. In 1855 a shipload of Indians was ordered for Grenada
and St. Lucia, but the Indian Government objected to certain provisions of the
proposed labour ordinances for the territories, and it was not until after modifications
were made that emigration was legalised for Grenada in 1856 and to St. Lucia in 1858.
These Acts sanctioning immigration to Grenada and St. Lucia are of interest to the
historian for the Act (Act XXI of 1855) contained the important new clause that
emigration would be allowed to proceed only if the laws made in the receiving colonies
met with the approval of the Government of India. This Principle was soon after
incorporated into the whole system of indenture emigration under Act XIX of 1856.
The first East Indian labour for Grenada arrived from Calcutta on May 1st. 1857 on
the ship MAIDSTONE. Out of 375 Indians embarked, 289 had survived the journey,
nearly 25 per cent having died on the voyage." In 1858 the FULWOOD was dis-
patched from Calcutta with a total of 402 men, women and children,78 but only 362
landed.79 And in 1859 the JALA WAR was also dispatched from Calcutta with 344
workers. Of these 299 survived the voyage.80 By 1861 a total of 944 East Indians had
arrived in Grenada. In the period 1861-65, 1,357 more were indentured for this island.
After this period the numbers fell off. The last ship brought 172 workers to Grenada
The East Indian immigration to Grenada was too small to make much difference in
the population or economy. It has already been mentioned that African and Indian
immigration did provide labour which helped to restore estates that had been pre-
viously abandoned. In times of depression, however, their usefulness as members of
the agricultural labour force was limited. Laurence explains:
The smaller islands employed a labour force so small in absolute numbers
as to leave very little margin for fluctuations in the prosperity of the sugar
industry, so that the short term depression was likely to cause unemploy-
ment among indentured labourers. In such circumstances in 1866 some
Indians were moved from Grenada to British Guiana, and the case for
indentured labour in the smaller islands could not thereafter be very
strong, though the local planters did not easily accept this. As their sugar
industry declined, their case grew steadily weaker."8
Indentured immigration came to an end for Grenada in 1885, with the last Indians
opting for a return passage being repatriated between 1891-1895.82 The strongest
proof that conditions in Grenada had not been so bad is the fact that the majority of
Indians remained behind, receiving land instead of the return passage. Throughout the
Caribbean, between one quarter and one third of the immigrants returned to India.
Many Indians in Grenada began to engage in the production of cocoa and nutmegs,
profiting from the experience some had gained during indenture, as some had been
employed on cocoa and nutmeg estates instead of on sugar lands. Bell observes CIRCA
some fifteen hundred Coolie immigrants imported as indentured
labourers, and who, having served their indenture, have preferred to
remain in the island to take bounty, rather than take advantage of the free
passage back to India, to which they are entitled after 10 years service.
Nearly all these Coolies now possess houses and plots of land, and are
generally ten times as well off as their fellows in India.83
During the period 1834-1885, at least 6,207 African, Portuguese, and East Indian
indentured workers had been introduced into Grenada. Along with this stream of
immigration there was another one comprising workers from other Caribbean islands.
This stream was difficult to measure, as no accurate records were kept. A certain
amount of movement of population in the Caribbean has always taken place, but never
in such volume as after Emancipation. In addition to the mainstreams of immigration
to Trinidad and Guiana, there was also a considerable movement of people between
the islands, especially those that were politically united. Thus there was an exchange
of migrants between Grenada, Tobago, St. Vincent and St. Lucia. This migration was
not confined to the labouring classes, but also involved the growing brown elite class.
Promotion in the Civil Service of the various islands often came through acceptance of
a transfer to another territory. The practice of shuttling around civil servants con-
tinued until the 1960's, and was commented upon by Gairy in 1962. Remarking on
the composition of the Administrator's Office in 1962 he said:
The Administrator is a Jamaican. The Secretary to Government is a Vin-
centian. The Adviser the Acting Attorney General is a Vincentian.
The Assistant Secretary to Government is a Barbadian. Mrs. Norma
Flemming is a Vincentian, and even the two drivers are Barbadian.84
In addition to migration between the Windward Islands, there was also some migra-
tion into Grenada of Barbadians.5s Barbados had always been the most densely
populated island; in 1844 there were already 740 people per square mile.86 One of the
effects of population pressure was the Governmental encouragement of emigration,
and the willingness of Barbadians to emigrate. Of special interest because of its rele-
vance to the population of Mount Moritz in Grenada are the efforts at this time of the
Barbadian Government to help a particular group of the population to better itself
In 1859 Governor Hincks of Barbados outlined a scheme to the Secretary of State
to resettle some of the poor white population of Barbados. Roberts recounts:
Hincks discussed the history of these people. They were descendants of
indentured labourers sent out from the United Kingdom in the
Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries. During slavery they played a fairly
important part in the life of the colony, contributing substantially to its
militia... Emancipation 'utterly ruined the poor whites' as they were
dispossessed of their holdings. Unaccustomed to work as agricultural
labourers and without sufficient resources to rent land at the rents then
prevailing 'they have been prevented from starving only by the extension
of liberal aid from the parish'. Their distress evoked wide sympathy but so
far no proposals for assistance had been advanced. The Governor was
convinced that 'humanity and sound policy' made it imperative to devise
some scheme of immigration for these people. He conceived a scheme of
sending between 500 and 1,000 poor whites to neighboring colonies,
each to be given a grant of between 5 and 10 acres of land.87
The British Government seemed to support the project, provided that Barbados
assume full financial responsibility for the project. Having obtained the sanction of the
British Government, the Governor of Barbados outlined the scheme to the Govern-
ments of Jamaica, Grenada and St. Vincent. The Government of Jamaica did not
consider the scheme a feasible one, and St. Vincent rejected the proposition. The
Governor of Grenada, however, welcomed the scheme
considering that it might prove of advantage to the island. The
Executive Committee shared his view, provided the scheme involved the
island in no expenditure. There were 2,000 acres of land in the vicinity of
Grand Etang, at an elevation suitable to 'European Constitutions'.88
Although this scheme was never officially initiated, there soon developed a con-
siderable emigration from Barbados, including the emigration of "poor whites" It is
estimated that between 1861 and 1871 about 20,400 people migrated from Barbados,
about 4,600 migrating to Trinidad, St. Vincent, Grenada, Tobago and St. Lucia. Also,
around the 1860's a number of "poor whites" migrated to St. Vincent, and to Bequia
in the Grenadines.89 The "poor whites" who settled Mount Moritz and who went to
live in Morne Jaloux may have come to Grenada as parts of either one or none of these
The plight of the "poor whites" was again brought up by the Commission of Poor
Relief, appointed in Barbados in 1875. In their report of 1877 they considered this
a manifestly deteriorating race, miserably poor and correspondingly
proud, without self respect, idle and averse to any kind of work except
fishing and tillage of a few rods of arid sterile ground which they rented.9
The Committee urged that
persons originally well or comfortably off who from adverse
circumstances have fallen from the higher sphere which they occupied or
ought to occupy .91
required special assistance. However, no specific plan of helping this or any other
group was put forward.
Another effort to help the "poor whites" which may have resulted in some
immigration to Grenada was a clause of an Act of 1891 consolidating and amending
previous Emigration Acts. This Act authorized the Governor in Council to spend each
year a sum not exceeding Three Hundred Pounds for assistance to "persons of the
poorer classes who would be likely to better their condition by so doing to
emigrate from this island to any of the neighboring colonies".92
In 1897 the Victoria Emigration Society Act was passed with the object of assisting
in the emigration of "poor women who are compelled to earn their living but are
unable to do so in Barbados". Most of the women assisted were white, and some may
have come to Grenada.93
The uncertainty concerning immigration of white Barbadians to Grenada stems
from the lack of records. In 1935 the administrator of Grenada wrote that there were
no records or publications dealing with white settlement in the island.94
Immigration during this period is still reflected in the racial composition of the
GRENADA POPULATION BY RACE 1960
Source: 1960 Population Census Tables 5-1, 5-2.
Race Number Percentage
Negro 46,690 52.65
Mixed 37,393 42.17
East Indian 3,767 4.25
White 699 0.79
Amerindian, Carib. 3
Other 103 0.1
Not Stated 22
Total 88,677 100.00
Although Grenada received immigrants from 1846, the population of Grenada grew
only slightly in the decade 1851-1861. Harewood shows a growth rate of 0.25 for this
period. At the end of 1861, the population was 31,900. During the next two decades
10,503 people were added to the population, so that by 1881 the population was
42,403.95 The growth of the population was not more due to the emigration of
Grenadians to the developing colonies of Trinidad and British Guiana during this
period. In addition to the population added through immigration to Grenada, the
death rates had fallen with Emancipation, and fertility showed signs of increasing. This
period saw, however, epidemics of cholera, smallpox and scarlet fever which severely
curtailed population growth.
The most marked feature of this population phase was the massive migration of
Grenadians to Trinidad, Cuba and the Americas. Grenada gained 1,400 persons in the
period 1881-1891 from immigration to the island, but from 1891 to 1921 the balance
of migration showed tremendous emigration from the island. In the period 1891-1901
the estimated migration balance was 2,575. For the period 1901-1911 it was 8,780,
and for the period 1911-1921 it was 12,042. Migration was so heavy for this period
that there was actually a reduction in the total population. During the time span,
however, the population grew from 42,403 at the end of 1881 to 66,302 at the end of
1921 due to natural increase.96
The 1901 Census attributed the extensive emigration to the "low wages (when
compared with the wages obtainable in the neighboring colony of Trinidad and South
and Central America), increased difficulty in getting land for making gardens, and the
enhanced value of land". Increasing poverty in Carriacou due to the steady decrease in
the value of cotton, the principal product, was a factor contributing to the massive
migration from that island-parish.
Some of the migration labourers were to return home, but most settled permanent-
ly in the foreign country. Many who migrated to work on the Panama canal died there,
due to the unhealthy climate of the Canal Zone. But the migrating labour did not
forget their families in Grenada. They regularly sent back money to Grenada, money
of sufficient quantity to be a contribution to the national income. Migration was
severely curtailed with the restrictions put on immigration to the United States by
their quota law in 1921, and with the completion of the Canal, migration trends from
this period, however, carry over into the next.
Migration from Grenada to the Americas and Cuba continued until 1924. Migration
to the United States reached a peak in 1923, just before the almost total ban on
immigration with the passing of the Immigration Act in 1924. Along with this,
migration to Cuba was also controlled. However, migration to Trinidad continued in
an unbroken, steady stream. During the period 1926-1928 annual net migration was
about 700, as compared with 2,000 in 192397 With the expansion of the oil industry
in the Dutch Antilles in 1928, migration increased during the periods after 1928. In
1929 and 1930 net migration was approximately 1,000 persons and 1,500 persons
After 1930 the World Depression forced many Grenadians to return home. There
was continued immigration to Trinidad, however. In fact, never before this had there
been such a massive influx of Grenadians into Trinidad. During the period 1934-1939
it is estimated that about 4,000 Grenadians went to settle in Trinidad99 During the
war, Grenadians continued to rush to Trinidad in spite of the danger of travelling in
wartime. In Trinidad there was an increase in demand for labour following the opening
of American Naval and Military Bases on that island, and so large was the immigration
in response to this demand that in 1942 it became necessary to pass an Immigration
Ordinance prohibiting the entry of manual workers. In 1944 a further Ordinance was
passed prohibiting immigration from other West Indian islands, unless under contract
for agricultural work. During 1941-1944 the net loss from Grenada had been
8,300.100 After these ordinances were passed, migration naturally fell off, but never
ceased altogether, as Grenadians had by this time mastered the art of getting into
Trinidad without attracting the attention of the Trinidad immigration officials.
In spite of the massive emigration from Grenada during this time span, Grenada's
population continued to grow. From a figure of 66,302 in 1921, it reached 72,387 in
1946. After 1921 mortality rates all over the Caribbean began to decline and fertility
to increase due to the control of epidemics and improving health. One effect of
increasing American influence in the Caribbean was a dissemination of information
and aid leading to a greater knowledge and practise of Public Health by Caribbean
Countries, including Grenada. Particularly of note in Grenada was the inception of the
Aedes Egypti Programme, funded by the United Nations, for the control of malaria.
Swamps were filled in and a house to house campaign was initiated for the
extermination of the malaria mosquito.
During this period Grenada once more saw large scale emigration. Part of this
migration was to Trinidad. In anticipation of the Federation, Trinidad relaxed her
immigration controls, and Grenadians took advantage of this to stream into the neigh-
bouring island. Part of the emigration was to the United Kingdom, where increased
employment opportunities attracted migrants from the poorer regions of the British
Commonwealth to Britain. In addition to the "pull" factors of the promise of employ-
ment at relatively high wages, there were "push" factors in Grenada, particularly at
this time. In addition to the normal hardship of earning a living, the devastation caused
by the hurricane of 1955 caused many people to abandon their land, and to seek their
fortunes elsewhere. In 1955 1,140 people left Grenada mainly for Trinidad and the
United Kingdom. By 1958 2,500 joined the trek. Between 1958 and 1960 6,600
persons emigrated from Grenada,101 a figure higher than for any of the other British
Islands of the Lesser Antilles, including Barbados, with its much higher population. In
1959 alone, 2.46 of the total population migrated.102
The attractions of Trinidad and the United Kingdom may have been almost equal in
the eyes of Grenadians. Naipaul describes a scene on board ship in the height of the
emigration rush to the United Kingdom. The ship has picked up emigrants in the small
islands, and is docking at Trinidad, its last port-of-call before sailing the Atlantic. On
docking at Port of Spain a passenger remarks to Naipaul:
'I hope Immigration keep a eye on these fellers,' Mr. Mackay said.
'Trinidad is a sort of second paradise to them, you know. Give them half a
chance and half of them jump ship right here'.
We docked. The emigrants massed on deck and chocked their way
down the gangplank to get a glimpse of Trinidad (and a few, according to
Mr. Mackay, to stay).'03
There were many scenes of drama when the ships left Grenada with its human cargo
for the United Kingdom. The emigrants would embark from the Carenage jetty on
lighters, used, under different circumstances, to ferry bananas to the ships in the
harbour. Amidst shouts and wails of relatives and friends who travelled in trucks and
buses to see their dear ones off, the lighters would be towed to the waiting liners,
where the emigrants would be hustled on board. The ships, however, maintained a
reasonable standard of service for the emigrants, and the passage across the Atlantic
must have been like a fairytale world to many, especially those from the more rural
areas, where they were unaccustomed to white table linen, shining cutlery, and white
stewards. The passage did not prepare them for the hardships they would have to face
on landing in England, although in the latter years of immigration, Britain sent along a
Social Worker on each immigrant ship to help to allay some of the problems that were
commonplace in the adjustment of the immigrants in Britain.
Immigration into the United Kingdom was shortlived, however. In fact the end of
this population period was to see the closing of the door to immigrants of the
countries which had been helping Grenada to postpone its population explosion. The
first countries to cut off immigration were the Netherlands Indies and Venezuela.
Trinidad again tightened her immigration restrictions in 1960. The United Kingdom
was also unavailable as a host country for Grenadians after 1961, when the Common-
wealth Immigration Act was passed. It is true that since 1962 there has been some
emigration to the United States and Canada, due to the increased quota arrangements
of these two countries, but this immigration has largely been restricted to skilled and
semi-skilled workers, and has not been of sufficient volume to affect population
Grenada, throughout its history, has been able to rid itself of excess population
through migration. Although the rate of natural increase of the population between
1955 and 1960 was 3.5 per cent per year, population growth was only 1.5 per cent per
year between 1954 and 1966.104 The last available census figures put Grenada's
population at 88,766 in 1960. In the light of the cessation of large-scale migration, a
high growth rate of the population was predicted for Grenada, a prediction that has
been fulfilled so far. Roberts has made projections to 1975, showing a population
estimate of 153,000 for that year.105 Harewood estimates that if the population
grows unchecked, it will may well reach 362,000 by the end of this century.106
Grenada in the 1970's is faced with a situation of serious proportions due to the
unprecedented population growth of the last two decades. Prior to 1960, Grenada had
no serious population problem, as much of its natural increase was drained away in
migration movements. The newness of the population problem is reflected in the
attitude of the Government to Family Planning in Grenada. Although the population
problem in Grenada is more of a crisis situation than a problem, the Grenada Govern-
ment does not give any direct assistance to the Grenada Planned Parenthood
Association. Politically the time will come for this when the attitudes of Grenada's
Catholic inhabitants soften towards the idea of birth control. In the meantime, the
Government does give indirect aid by permitting contraceptives imported by the
Grenada Planned Parenthood Association to come in free of duty. The Government
also allows the use of its clinics for lectures and treatments, and permits Government
doctors and nurses to give their services and to dispense contraceptives if they so
The Grenada Planned Parenthood Association itself comprises several intelligent
and active members committed to the ideals of Family Planning. The Association
maintains an office in St. George's with a full-time midwife and an interviewer, and in
Grenville it maintains a clinic. Financial support for the Association's activities comes
mainly from the International Planned Parenthood Federation. The Association
reports that in general the population it reaches with its lectures, films and house-to--
house campaigns are not antagonistic towards their work, and indeed, the attitudes of
many people are changing towards Family Planning. The Roman Catholic Church is
sufficiently concerned about the population growth to have set up its own committee.
David Lowenthal107 gives a number of consequences of emigration from small
islands. Perhaps the most devastating effects of emigration on Grenada has not so
much been the siphoning off of its skilled energetic young adults, but the formation of
a trilogy of beliefs relating to emigration. Emigration is held to be the panacea for the
islands' economic problems. It is also widely felt that anyone with ambition will seek
to emigrate. Only the lazy and the failures stay at home, and a child who seeks to
return to Grenada after studies to contribute to the development of the island is a
disappointment to his parents. Lastly, since all the best people have emigrated, the
only "experts" are foreigners. Grenadians do not trust local expertise, and would
rather support an industry or business headed by a foreigner than by a native
Grenadian. A Biblical quotation is applicable here:
A prophet is not without honour, except in his own country, and among
his own people.
Grenada's history of emigration has reinforced the colonial attitude of dependence
on outside help. Grenadians have been slow to realise that in this century their
salvation from present dilemmas is much more likely to come from self-help.
The history of migration in Grenada also has implications for such theoretical
questions as the boundary of this society. Although Grenada is an island, the social
links that bind Grenadians at home to others in territories abroad are very real. In
campaigning for union with Trinidad during the election of 1962, much was made of
the fact that every Grenadian had some relative or close friend living in Trinidad.
Grenadians also listen to Trinidad Radio Stations for much of their listening time, and
these stations accept letters from Grenadians for broadcast on request programmes.
One station even has a special request programme devoted entirely to Grenadian
requests. Grenadians read the two Trinidad newspapers, and these outsell the local
paper in Grenada. Visiting between relatives in Grenada and Trinidad is frequent, and
also between Grenada and the other Caribbean territories which host Grenadian
immigrants or the children of immigrants. Visiting between immigrants to the United
States, Canada and the United Kingdom is necessarily less frequent, but more frequent
than other immigrants who have a more assimilationist attitude to their host societies.
Some return every Christmas for the holidays. Grenadians abroad still feel that they
have a right to a say in decisions affecting the future of Grenada. With the recent plans
for independence have come many letters from Grenadians abroad expressing their
opinions on the issue. Grenadian Ministers of Government have also met with
Grenadians abroad to discuss the Independence issue, and to appeal for their aid in
finding markets for Grenadian produce abroad.'08
Does the Grenadian society extend into all territories where its citizens have
migrated? If the society is considered to be bounded by the shores of the island, how
does one describe Grenadians overseas who have no intention of returning to Grenada
to live, but who still regard Grenada as "home", and pass on their identification as
Grenadians to their children, and even grand children? 109
We must not underestimate the importance, however, of the few people of out-
standing ability who did return to Grenada, and have been instrumental in bringing
about social change in the island. The cases of Marryshow and Gairy have already been
mentioned. Recently, too, young graduates from the U.W.I. have returned to form the
core of a protest movement in Grenada aimed against both political parties, and other
sectors of the community which they term "the establishment" Their movement has
gained some sympathy, if not active support among the island's population.
THE CULTURAL BACKGROUND:
The historical circumstances surrounding the development of Grenada, and the
various streams of migration to the island are the two major forces which formed the
social structure of the island. The contact of several cultures, the fact that regardless of
their numerical strength the vast majority of the population was forced by the
pressures of the colonial system into de facto minority group status, and the tacit
acceptance by the people of European values (sometimes not to the exclusion of a
second value system from a different source) has brought about a culture which
exhibits variety, diversity, duality, division, conflict, consistency, traditionalism and
consensus. Although there is a rich field for social research in Grenada, the island has,
so far, not enjoyed much attention from researchers in the Social Sciences. In spite of
this, however, Grenada enjoys a place on the sociological map, for it was here that the
research was done to support what had proved to be the most controversial theory
about West Indian Societies.
In 1952-53 Michael G. Smith was stationed in Grenada as a member of the Institute
of Social and Economic Research of the University of the West Indies. As a result of
his sojourn The Dark Puritan was written, first serialised in Caribbean Quarterly,
and later published in book form.110 He then turned his attention to other aspects
of the social structure. Smith found that Grenada's social structure was ideal for the
substantiation of his theory of the Plural Society, and the material he collected in
Grenada would later be written up in support of this theory.
Let us in this section return to a discussion of M.G. Smith's work on Grenada, and
examine his evidence for dividing Grenada into two cultural sections the folk and
the elite. In the heated debate of the relevance of his theory of the Plural Society to
Grenada, the veracity of the item he lists as items of cultural differences 11 have been
accepted as given. There is reason to doubt, however, that some of these differences
existed even twenty years ago when Smith did his fieldwork in Grenada. If his lists of
cultural differences are shown to be less than exact, so must his whole theory be
re-evaluated on the basis that it rests on false premises.
Smith asserts, for example, that the folk in Grenada speak French patois,112
although many people were bilingual. So far as I have been able to ascertain only the
very senior citizens (over 60 years) from the more isolated rural areas are anywhere
near fluent in patois. Many adults today know no patois some only a few phrases.
Undeniably patois was the language of the majority of Grenadians for several years
after the awarding of the island to England, but then it was the language of all
Grenadians of French background who had chosen to remain in Grenada. Patois was
never officially suppressed as it was in St. Lucia.113 The gradual departure of the
French population, the importation of slaves and indentured workers who learned
English, and the changes in the society that made the learning and speaking of correct
English a means of increasing one's status, was sufficient to make patois a secondary
language in Grenada in a very short time.
Patois certainly has not survived to constitute a language barrier between people, as
in St. Lucia where in the northeast of the island some people still use patois as a first
language, and where almost everyone with French connections are bilingual, with
patois as a second, intimate language. In any case, before patois died out in Grenada
both folk and elite spoke patois the estate managers were as fluent in it as were the
estate workers, and the managers of non-French backgrounds soon learned the dialect
so as to be able to communicate with those of their employers who could not or
would not communicate in English.
No study has in fact been done in Grenada to ascertain the extent to which French
patois survives in the island, and the results of such a study are needed before one can
categorically state that there is a language difference between the folk and the elite.
We have a note from a researcher in Gouyave to support the disappearance of patois
from use by the Grenadian folk:
I have found no individuals whose residual knowledge of patois would
justify calling them bi-lingual. Although patois had restricted use in highly
specific contexts, especially by the over 40, many Lance people of com-
parable age never used it and complained, apparently sincerely, that they
could not understand it. 114
Although I am inclined to think that M.G. Smith's evaluation of the spread of
patois in 1950 in Grenada was inaccurate, there is no denying that French patois has
influenced the speech patterns of Grenadians. Alister Hughes notes that the syntax of
the non-standard speech of Grenadians has inheritances from French:
People make messages. Women make babies, and it is not unusual to be
told that someone is making a dance. 15s
He also points to the survival of certain words in the Grenadian Lingua Franca:
The young Grenadian is likely also to become uncomfortably acquainted
with bet-roog, a tiny red insect which lives in the grass and causes an
irritation when it burrows under human skin. The derivation from French,
bete rouge, a red beast, is obvious bata boards from the French,
batard. but tuds. from the legal French term, deboute
boo-shet. from the French brechet. 16
But survivals in syntax and isolated words are hardly the same thing as the survival of
the living language.
It is also open to question whether more than a few distorted words of Yoruba are
still remembered by the descendants of the Liberated Africans in the villages of
Munich, Concord and La Mode. Smith describes Yoruba as the "sacred" and
"classical" language of the folk.117
We must ask with all seriousness, because of its implications, just how much
research Smith did in Grenada to establish the institutional differences between elite
and folk. Smith has offered empirical proof of the social stratification among the
elites,"18 and the family structure of Grenville and Latante,19 but he has not shown
that the folk does not share some criteria for status determination with the elite, nor
demonstrated that no elements of the family structure of the folk are shared by the
elite. From by brief experience with Grenadian social structure, it seems to me that in
both these instances folk and elite share common values. All in the society recognize
the importance of the ascriptive elements of colour and family background in deter-
mining social status. They also certainly recognize the difference between those who
have folk origins yet now are well educated, in prestigious occupations, and are
wealthy; and those who are still poor. As regards family structure, there is evidence
that many elite in Grenada follow the mating cycle of the folk visiting, cohabitation
and marriage but due to their knowledge of contraceptives, and the alternatives of
marriage or abortion if the female gets pregnant, there seldom are children to be used
as a ready index as to the presence of the unions of this mating cycle.
As regards the rest of Smith's list of cultural differences, it would seem that he
based his authoritative statements on what he observed and what he was told, failing
to note the prevalence and spread of such items among both his elite and the folk. To
be sure of the correctness of his statements would have meant a lifetime of research
here in Grenada. Thus his plural society in Grenada is divided according to unscientific
evaluation, and further sociological investigation may in fact remove many of the
items from his list of differences between the sections of the Grenadian population.
Another feature that we must note with respect to M.G. Smith's work in Grenada
and Carriacou is that while he mentions the "Poor Whites" and the East Indian
population in passing, he assumes that they are members of the folk section. Thus he
says that about 3,000 members of the folk "were of East Indian descent, distinguished
from the rest by race and cultural origin, but not by social status.120 In another place
he writes of the East Indians:
Being small in number, they accommodate themselves to the creole society
of white, coloured and black as best they can. Some Indians have achieved
prominence through wealth. however the great majority who lack
wealth form an ethnic segment of the Grenadian lower or 'peasant' class.
Such Indians rarely mate with Negroes, and differentiate themselves by
stressing their Indian cultural heritage.121
In view of the fact that Smith recognizes the East Indians as an "ethnic segment"
and notes that they "stress" their Indian cultural heritage, and that they seldom
intermarry, Smith should not then assume a homogenous folk section as he is inclined
Little has been written either about "Poor Whites" in the Caribbean,122 or about
small minorities of East Indians in the area,123 but M.G. Smith is not alone in
assuming that he knows about these minorities, Daniel Crowley writes:
The only group in the West Indies for which a case of cultural isolation can
be made is the East Indian, particularly in Trinidad. Elsewhere their
numbers are so small that almost complete Creolization has taken place, as
in St. Lucia, St. Vincent and Grenada, or East Indian customs may be
preserved only within the family circle as in Jamaica.124
From the pen of Fr. Devas there is this ideological comment:
Unlike Trinidad, there are no East Indians in Grenada of low caste, and
none who are not Christians. They are still occasionally referred to as
Indians, but although proud of their descent, organising clubs and even
companies of their own, they have become absorbed by the community at
large and are known, like West Indians or Grenadians.125
An extremely uninformed comment was made in 1951 by an unobservant Agri-
culturalist from the American Embassy, Venezuela.
in 1857 indentured East Indians were introduced today none are
left, nor have they left among the African population any visible genetic
evidence of their sojourn. Those who did not die or voluntarily migrate
were transferred to Trinidad and the effort to use East Indians in Grenada
If Mr. Kempton had visited the market in St. George's on a Saturday morning, he
would have ample evidence of the genetic survival of the East Indians in Grenada. A
visit to the Commercial banks would have shown him the more wealthy rural East
Indians the women dressed in the brocades also favoured by the East Indian women
of comparable social position and the men with the "fat" pants and felt hat, also
popular among the rural East Indian males in Trinidad.
It is the purpose of this thesis to prove either the existence of homogeneity or
heterogeneity in the society of the poorer Grenadian by examining the norms
pertaining to one major institutional area. I shall examine the family structure of
three127 rural Grenadian villages, Mount Moritz, settled by "Poor Whites", a village
settled predominantly by East Indians, and a village which is predominantly Negro. It
will be interesting to see if the norms and values of the villagers coincide, or if the
Grenadian Social structure is even more culturally plural than M.G. Smith has
BEVERLEY A. STEELE
1. Coard, F.M. Bittersweet and Spice Arthur H. Stockwell, Ltd., Devon. 1970. p. 19.
2. Census of the Windward Islands, 1960.
3. Verrill, A.H.: Isles of Spice and Palm D. Appleton and Company, New York and London,
1915. p. 168.
4. Which is opposite to the present Yacht Club.
5. Gittens-Knight, E. (compiler): The Grenada Handbook and Directory, 1946. Bridgetown,
Barbados, 1946. p. 47.
6. The Grenada Handbook. 1946. op. cit. p. 65.
7. Kingsbury, Robert C: Commercial Geography of Grenada 1960. Office of Naval Research.
Technical Report No. 3. Bloomington. Indiana University Press.
8. Whereas Grenada's cocoa output is small in relation to world supply, it has a distinctive
flavour, which makes it highly sought after by confectioners.
9. Hence Grenada earns its name "Spice Island"
10. The nutmeg is a very versatile provider. As well as providing the nutmeg kernel for spice and
oil, it gives the shell which is full of oil and used as a fuel. The husk is made into nutmeg jelly, and
the scarlet jacket of the kernel is dried and made into another spice, mace.
11. Trippit, Frank: "Grenada, the Nowhere Island." Look, March, 1970. p. 28.
12. Sherlock, Philip: The West Indies. Thames and Hudson Ltd. London 1966. p. 24.
13. The architecture of Grenada has excited some interest. See J.R. Groome "Sedan-chair
porches: a detail of Georgian architecture in St. George's." Caribbean Quarterly Vol. 10. No. 3.
14. Fermour, Patrick Lee: Traveller's Tree John Murray. London, 1950. pp. 182-183.
15. Verrill, A.H.: op. cit. p. 19.
16. Bullen, Ripley P.: Archeology of Grenada, W.I. Gainsville. University of Florida
(Contributions of the Florida State Museum.) Social Sciences No. I1, 1964.
17. du Tertre. Quoted The Grenada Handbook p. 20.
18. Pere Labat and Father du Tertre both Roman Catholic Priests and Chroniclers, describe this
event in their memoirs.
19. Bullen, op. cit. p. 57.
20. Hughes, Alistair: "Non-Standard English of Grenada." Caribbean Quarterly. Vol. 12, No. 4.
21. Bracey, Robert. O.P.: Eighteenth Century Studies Oxford MCMXXV. p. 100.
22. Kay, Frances: This is Grenada. Caribbean Printers, 1967, p. 15.
23. See Bracey, op. cit. p. 102.
24. Smith, Michael G.: "Structure and Crisis in Grenada 1950-1954" in The Plural Society in the
British West Indies University of California Press. Berkeley and Los Angeles, 1965. p. 266.
25. Jacques Chadeau, a captain under Fedon, eluded capture by the British for over 10 years,
but was taken in June 1808. A rather grisly tale is told of his demise. A legend says that he was put
into a cage on Mt. Eloi Point where food was put daily out of his reach, and thus he starved to
death. Mr. Alistair Hughes, in personal communication, relates having been to the Point as a child,
and being shown a rusty cage, that is said to be the one used for this punishment. He does believe
that some credence can be given to this tale, although the official story is that Chadeau was
26. Fermour, Patrick Lee: Traveller's Tree. John Murray, London, 1950. p. 193.
27. Smith, Michael G.:The Dark Puritan University of the West Indies Extra Mural Department,
28. For a description of the struggle between the churches, for precedence and the confusion of
the schism, see Raymund P. Devas, Conception Island. London, 1932.
29. Bell, Hesketh J.: Obeah; Witchcraft in the West Indies Negro Universities Press, Connecticut,
1970. Originally published 1889.
30. Devas, Raymund P.: History of Grenada, 1964, p. 162.
31. "John Candler's Visit to Grenada" Caribbean Studies. VoL 4, No. 4, pp. 56-57
32. The Carenage and the Esplanade.
33. Marryshow, one of the first advocates of a West Indian Federation, and an able journalist and
statesman, is largely an unsung hero. His grave is one of the simplest in the St. George's Cemetery,
and the only monument to his achievements is the restoration of his house on Tyrael Street, which
serves as the office of the Extra-Mural Department of the University of the West Indies.
34. Most of the histories of Grenada end at this point. Except for M.G. Smith, Pat Emmanuel
and odd reports (for example those on the hurricane and the Commission of Enquiry), no other
attempt has been made to write of modern history.
35. Hickerton, J.P. Caribbean Kallaloo pp. 31-32. Story attributed to Gittens-Knight.
36. Smith, Michael G: Stratification in Grenada University of California Press, Berkeley and Los
Angeles, 1965. p. 11.
37. Smith, ibid. p. 13.
38. Smith, M.G.: "Structure and Crisis in Grenada" op. cit.
39. Council papers, Grenada, 1954. Report on the Labour Department, 1951. p. 4.
40. Grenada Council Paper 3 of 1952. Report on the Grenada Police Force.
41. Smith, M.G.: The Dark Puritan op. cit. p. 6.
42. The West Indian Federation consisted of the following islands: Jamaica, Trinidad & Tobago,
Barbados, Grenada, St. Lucia, St. Vincent, Dominica, Antigua, St. Kitts-Nevis-Anguilla, and
43. Roberts, G.W.: The Population of Jamaica, Cambridge University Press, 1957.
44. Bullen, op. cit
45. Kay, p. 15.
46. Singham, A.W.: The Hero and the Crowd in a Colonial Polity New Haven, Yale University
Press, 1968. p. 39.
47. Sewell, William G.: The Ordeal of Free Labour in the British West Indies, 1862. Reprinted by
Frank Cass & Co. Ltd. London, 1968. p. 85.
48. Smith, M.G.: Stratification in Grenada, op. cit. p. 10.
49. Rottenburg, p. 50.
50. Williams, Eric. From Columbus to Castro Andre Deutsch. London 1970, p. 283. However,
Sewell (p. 85) gives a figure of 23,641, and The Grenada Handbook gives the slave population as
23,604 with 1,680 free black and 1,500 free Coloured.
51. Byrne, Jocelyn. The Growth of the Population of the Caribbean (Mimeographed, U.W.I.),
52. Laurence, ILO.: Immigration into the West Indies in the 19th Century. Caribbean Universities
Press. Barbados, 1971 p. 16.
53. Roberts, G.W. "Emigration from the Island of Barbados" Social and Economic Studies
Institute of Social and Economic Research, U.W.I., VoL 4, No. 3, September 1955.
54. With the exception of the scheme that brought Chinese workers to the Caribbean.
55. Roberts, G.W. and Byrne, J. "Summary Statistics on Indenture and Associated Migration
Affecting the West Indies, 1934-1918." Reprinted from Population Studies in CS.O. Papers,
Trinidad and Tobago No. 4, December, 1967.
56. The Grenada Handbook, p. 41.
57. Candler, p. 57.
58. Ibid., p. 56.
59. Smith, M.G; "A Framework for Caribbean Studies" in The Plural Society in the British West
Indies by M.G. Smith University of California Press, Berkeley and Los Angeles, 1965, p. 34.
60. Grenada, St. Vincent, St. Lucia, Dominica, St. Kitts.
61. Quoted from G.W. Roberts "Immigration of Africans into the British Caribbean" Population
Studies, Vol. VII, No. 3, March, 1954, p. 249.
62. The Grenada Handbook, p. 45.
63. See Laurence op. cit p. 15
64. Ibid., p. 16.
66. Ibid., p. 15.
67. Concord, La Mode and Munich.
68. M.G. Smith, "A Framework for Caribbean Studies", p. 34.
69. Roberts, "Immigration of Africans into the British Caribbean", p. 251, 252.
70. Wood, Donald: Trinidad in Transition Oxford University Press for the Institute of Race
Relations. London and New York, 1968, pp. 101-102.
71. The Grenada Handbook, p. 42.
72. Roberts and Byrne, p. 61.
73. Roberts "Immigration of Africans into the British Caribbean", p. 254.
74. Roberts and Byrne, p. 61.
76. Laurence, p. 17.
77. British Parliamentary Papers. 18th General Report of the Emigration Commission. Appendix
17, p. 97. These reports will be henceforward referred to as Emigration Reports.
78. Ibid., p. 97.
79. 21st Emigration Report. Appendix 21, p. 82.
80. 20th Emigration Report. Appendix 26, p. 112.
81. Laurence p. 67.
82. An interesting note is that in 1889 3 Indians re-indenturing themselves in India for Trinidad
had already served indentures in Grenada. A total of 73 re-emigrating Indians for the years
1885-1894 had also served indentures in St. Vincent, and 21 in St. Lucia. See Weller p. 165,
83. Bell, p. 128.
84. The Star February 17, 1962. Quoted in Singham, p. 248.
85. Barbados is sometimes grouped with the Windward Islands, but more correctly it stands by
itself. It has, through history, always tried to disassociate itself from the other Windwards,
sometimes resisting union with the others to the point of rioting. Now it is an independent nation,
while the other Windward Islands are States in Association with Britain.
86. Roberts, "Emigration from Barbados" p. 245.
87. Roberts, "Emigration from Barbados" pp. 250-251.
88. Ibid. p. 251.
89. Ibid. p. 251.
90, 91. Report on the Commission on Poor Relief, 1877. Minutes of the Barbados House of
Assembly. Quoted in Roberts "Emigration from Barbados" p. 263.
92. Roberts "Emigration from Barbados" p. 266.
93. Ibid., p. 269.
94. Price, Greenfell White Settlers in the Tropics. American Geographical Society. New York,
1939. p. 97
95. Harewood, Jack. "Population Growth in Grenada in the Twentieth Century" Social and
Economics Studies, VoL 15, No. 2, Table 1, p. 61.
96. Ibid. Table 1, p. 61 and Table 2, p. 63.
97. Ibid., Table 3, p. 65.
99. Harewood points out that this estimate from the Trinidad and Tobago Census might
include Grenadians who had migrated to Trinidad from Panama, Cuba and elsewhere. This
phenomenon was quite common, as many forced to return from Panama after the Canal was built,
and from the United States during the depression, calculated that their interests would be better
served by leaving the boat at Trinidad, and not returning to Grenada, from which place their
friends and relations were fleeing daily. A documented case is that of Mr. Jim Patterson, a
Carriacouan of Scotch ancestry. The family plantation fallen on lean days, he migrated to the
United States around 1910. Around 1924 he migrated to Trinidad, where he set himself up in
business. He maintains his connections with his family in Grenada, however, visiting once or twice
100. Harewood, p. 66.
101. Harewood. "Population Growth of Grenada etc.", p. 66.
102. Singham, p. 69. "The Hero and the Crowd in a Colonial Polity Yale University Press, New
103. Naipaul, V.S. The Middle Passage. Penguin Edition, U.K. 1969, p. 40.
104. Five Year Plan. pp. 13-20. Quoted in Singham, p. 70.
105. Roberts, G.W. Population Projections for the Windward and Leeward Islands to 1975.
(Unpublished) Quoted in Harewood, p. 61.
106. Harewood. "Population Growth of Grenada etc.", p. 61.
107. Lowenthal, David. West Indian Societies. Oxford University Press for Institute of Race
Relations. London etc. 1972. Chapter 6.
108. For example see "Grenada Government Set to Eliminate Opposition" by Gerald Louison.
Torchlight Friday March 9, 1973.
109. See Lowenthal, p. 228. Quote from Coombs: "Very often 'one of us' has never seen the
West Indies, and has no accent. What she or he does have is a West Indian grandmother, and that is
110. Smith, M.G. The Dark Puritan op. cit
111. In at least two places M.G. Smith lists items of social and cultural differences between the
folk and the elite. See Stratification in Grenada pp. 235-236 and 237, and The Dark Puritan p. 6.
112. Ibid. and also in "Ethnic and Cultural Pluralism in the British Caribbean" in The Plural
Society in the British Caribbean op. cit.
113. For a discussion of the survival of French patois in St. Lucia see Mervin C. Alleyne.
"Language and Society in St. Lucia". Caribbean Studies Vol. I. No. I, 1961.
114. Macdonald, Judy Smith Inlaw Terms and Affinal Relations in a Grenadian Fishing
Community. Unpublished paper. October, 1971.
115. Hughes, Alister. Op. cit. p. 48.
116. Ibid. pp. 48-49.
117. Smith, M.G. Stratification in Grenada Op. cit. p. 236.
118. Smith, M.G. Ibid.
119. Smith, M.G. West Indian Family Structure. Seattle, University of Washington Press, 1962.
120. Smith, M.G. Stratification in Grenada op. cit. p. 235.
121. Smith, M.G. "Structure and Crisis in Grenada etc." in The Plural Society in the British West
Indies, p. 276.
122. For literature on the "Poor Whites" see Grenfell Price, White Settlers in the Tropics.
American Geographical Society. New York, 1939. Edward T. Price, "The Redlegs of Barbados"
Yearbook Association of Pacific Coast Geographers Vol. 19, 1957. Warren T. Morill and Bennet
Dyke "A French Community on St. Thomas" Caribbean Studies. Vol. 5, No. 4, January 1966.
Francine Chartraud "A sujet des 'blancs-Matignon'." Bulletin de la Societe d'Histoire de la
Guadeloupe, No. 2, 1964.
123. See A. Ehrlich, East Indian Cane Cutters in Jamaica. Ph.D. Dissertation, University of
Michigan, 1969. Guy Lasserre, "Les 'Indiens' de Guadeloupe" Les Cashiers d'Outrer Mer. Vol. 6,
No. 22, 1953. Michael Horowitz and Morton Klass 'The Martiniquan East Indian Cult of
Maldevidan" Social and Economic Studies, No. 10, No. 1, 1961.
124. Crowley, Daniel, op. cit. p. 851.
125. Devas, Raymund P. History of Grenada. 1964. p. 162. If there was little difference made
between the Indians and creoles in Grenada, why the derogatory epithet "Babu"?
126. Kempton, James H. "Nutmeg: East Indian Settler in the West" Foreign Agriculture Vol.
VX, No. 4.
127. I should also like to visit the villages settled by the Liberated Africans, and the village in
Carriacou, "Windward", settled by "Poor Whites". But it is a matter of limiting the scope of this
thesis, so that the material does not become unmanageable.
"A FLAG ON THE ISLAND"
An island is a desert
without a flag.
The oil springs and the palm
sings in the trade wind,
corn and cotton spike like booby traps
in the ploughed up ground-
but the mariner cannot shut his eyes-
the night has voices in the silence all around!
So he has built a palisade
and he has risen in the centre
set on a high hill
a bit of sailcloth on an old spar
salvaged from the wreckage of time past;
Possession is proclaimed to all the world,
sighting the horizon. Man, look at that flag!
An old rag on a splintered mast
nails the Possessor
to all scanning eyes
crossing the meridians of the earth.
The wrecked and the sacrificed man
is now political man
and though the wind should shred the thistles
and bank the sand against the roots of grass
as if no human foot had crossed the island
there is the flag-
the island is Possessed. Alas!
Now a great stone shuts the mouth
of the Possessor's sad cave
In his sad cave
he sits and speaks in whispers.
in council with the bird, the man
the animal (but fire he fears)
and smoke signals, his own invention
discovery by his own invention!
MORE ON TRUTH, FACT, AND TRADITION IN CARRIACOU
Several years ago in Caribbean Quarterly W.A. Redhead, a former administrator of
Carriacou, published an attack on M.G. Smith's Kinship and Community in Carria-
cou.1 Smith's reply was based on research which he and others conducted during the
first half of the 1950's.2 Having been fortunate enough to live in Carriacou between
March, 1970 and November, 1971 I can shed light on the issues which Redhead
raised.3 What I have found, not surprisingly, in no way diminishes Kinship and
Community in Carriacou as a classic Caribbean ethnography.
Redhead's first point is that "Aruba, not Trinidad, has been the principal source of
wealth" for the islanders.4 In his rejoinder M.G. Smith made no comment on this
subject. It is not completely resolved by reference to his book even though Aruba is
listed twice in the index and Trinidad has listings for 12 pages. What M.G. Smith does
note is the importance of Trinidad as a market for nineteenth century agricultural
workers from Carriacou. s And, in a discussion of mid-twentieth century apprentice-
ship in Carriacou, he makes the following assertion:
Young men whose apprenticeships break down for lack of tools also look
for local employment as sailors, hoping thereby to save their fare to
Trinidad and fortune.6
Elsewhere I have noted a difference between Smith's and my own data with respect
to the number of Carriacouan migrants abroad in the year, 1953.7 My data show a
greater percentage of migrants in Aruba (26 per cent as opposed to 11 per cent) and
correspondingly fewer migrants in Trinidad (48 per cent as opposed to 66 per cent ).
Nevertheless, both sources show more people from Carriacou in Trinidad than in
Aruba (although this is not the same thing as a "source of wealth").
Even though this issue is not to be adequately resolved by reference to Smith's
research we cannot flatly maintain, as Redhead has, that Aruba is the primary source
of wealth for Carriacouans. This is because he does not tell us when Aruba was
economically more important to Carriacouans than Trinidad. For the period between
emancipation and the present, taken as a whole, Trinidad is far more significant than
Aruba, both in terms of the number of Carriacouans living there and the money they
earned. However, although there have been more Carriacouans in Trinidad than else-
where (outside Carriacou itself) more money remittances, savings, and pensions -
has been brought in from other places from time to time. These include Panama (until
about World War 1), the United States (during and following World War 1), Aruba (the
late 1930's until the early 1950's), England (1955 until the present), and the United
States and Canada (the present). Aruba, because of job lay-offs and restrictions on
foreigners, has not regained its former importance. Nevertheless, a few Carriacouans
who were born in Aruba in the late 1940's and early 1950's and who carry Dutch
passports, are returning to seek employment.
A second flaw in M.G. Smith's book, according to Redhead, is his definition of
'maroon' In Kinship and Community in Carriacou Smith describes a maroon as a
cooperative work project of young men for road repair or to clear the ponds.8 He
states that in Grenada this sort of maroon is "only used nowadays for heavy farm
work or for moving or setting up a house."9 Redhead, on the other hand, maintains
A Maroon in Carriacou, unlike Grenada, is a Spring Feast every village
has one and occurs just before the rains come. Every villager is expected
to contribute to the Feast.10
To this Smith reiterated his original statement and criticized Redhead's use of
"Spring", a misnomer for subtropical climes. He backed his position with a quote from
Procope who has used the term in an article on boat launching in Carriacou. Procope
equates the 'helping' with 'maroon', 'salaca,' and 'saraca.'1
Judging by current usage M.G. Smith, Redhead, and Procope are each partially
correct. That is to say, in Carriacou maroon refers to a variety of activities.12 At all
maroons villagers prepare food for the participants or workers. At most or all maroons
some ritual offering is made to the ancestors. This offering may be the 'wetting of the
ground' with rum and water so the dead will be pleased, the sacrifice of chickens, or
the setting of a ritual 'Parents' Plate' for the ancestors in the bedroom of the sponsor's
house (the saraca or salaca which Procope mentioned is the Parents' Plate).
Beyond these basic elements various sorts of maroons differ substantially. First,
there is the 'work maroon' or helping which M.G. Smith described. When a person had
a big task he called a maroon in order to get.the sufficient labour to complete the job
quickly. Pond clearing, road repair, house building or moving, preparing the earth for
planting, or harvesting corn or cotton have sometimes been called maroons. Some of
these activities also have other names, such as a 'jamboni' (hoeing ground), 'house
break' or 'corn break.'
Another type of maroon is the one mentioned by Redhead. Although it may have
been more prevalent in the past this maroon is presently held in just three or four
villages. In the morning of the maroon food is prepared in the yards of patrilineally
related families and their friends. By the afternoon some of the food is ready for
Parents' Plates in the homes of the sponsors. The rest is taken to a designated spot -
usually at a crossroads or beside a pond where it is added to the food and drink
which others have contributed. This communal food and rum is placed in a long line of
plates, pots, and jugs. The first portion is given to the drummers who will entertain
that night. Visitors and the family members are also fed. The scraps which are left are
distributed to the children in a custom known as "grapay.'
After the food has been eaten (usually by about 8 pm) there is a 'Big Drum' dance.
Three male drummers, a man to beat the 'oldoe' (a hoe blade struck with a piece of
iron), and female singers and 'chac chac' players provide the music. The entertainers,
the sponsors, and later, whoever feels the inclination, perform dances of the African
'Nations' to which most Carriacouans belong. They also dance 'belairs', 'kalindas', and
many others. This music and dance is at once ritually significant since it gives pleasure
to the ancestors if carried out correctly and provides entertainment for the people.
Interestingly, this maroon is not entirely different from the work maroon since in
some communities it is called to celebrate a successful cotton harvest. In at least one
village it is held upon completion of a pond clearing. The annual maroon also is given
to mark the start of the rain, as either a thanksgiving if the rains have come or as a
propitiation if they have not.
A third sort of maroon also related to the other two is the dream-message
maroon. This maroon is not what Redhead, Smith, or Procope has described in their
publications although it has much in common with the 'Sacrifice' which Smith dis-
cusses in his book.13 Indeed, the dream-message maroon is a sacrifice held for the
community at large rather than by a single family. Like the other maroons it includes
the preparation of food (including portions for the dead and for the children), ritual
sacrifices of animals (usually chickens), and the 'wetting of the earth' with rum, water,
and soda for the 'Old Parents' (the dead). It sometimes involves a ritual offering of
food to the sea as well. Unlike the annual maroon, a dream-message from the dead or
some other supernatural being is a necessary element. Usually, one of the Old Parents
will tell the dreamer that the maroon must be held at a particular place and at a given
time. Certain rituals, such as the way the food is prepared and distributed, must be
performed to insure success. If the dreamer or the principal to whom the dreamer
conveyed the message obeys the instructions then sickness may be avoided, trouble
averted (such as drought or disaster at sea), or success achieved. If the desired end does
not happen then the instructions were not followed correctly -e.g., the wrong spot
was chosen, the sponsor did not provide enough food and drink, someone ate from the
Parents' Plate before the appropriate time, etc. The dream-message maroon is
sponsored by an individual or family for a community and is held on public land. Such
maroons, unlike the annual maroons, may or may not incorporate a Big Drum dance.
Let us now take up Redhead's notion about that most important of Carriacouan
sacrificial meals, the Parents' Plate. The 'Plate', as it is sometimes called,14 is a portion
of unsalted food ritually prepared by an old woman and is set in the bedroom for the
ancestors to admire and spiritually "eat" It is a sign of respect to the dead. In turn,
the Old Parents assist the living in the specific requests or in the maintenance of their
general well-being. The Plate is a necessary element of all maroons, save only the most
casual maroons. is
About the Parents' Plate Redhead states the following:
The Parents' Plate which is traditional at all big feasts, if the people really
believe that their ancestors were at all present for this offering, the taboo
against touching it would have been so strong as to preclude the necessity
for having a "woman to watch it" or a "Gan-Gan," as she is known, to
"stop the young people from stealing."16
To this Smith replies:
Having accepted the stock reason given to explain why the old woman
who prepared the sacrifice remains beside it, Mr. Redhead proceeds to
infer popular dis-belief on the basis of his own misunderstanding and
assumptions of the appropriate conduct in the presence of ancestral
Smith supports his view that the Parents' Plate is indeed an offering for the ances-
tors by quoting from his writing on Norman Paul of Grenada. Paul grew up when
customs of parts of Grenada were more similar to Carriacou than they are today. He
was familiar with Carriacou also, having visited there many times."1 Smith then cites
Andrew Pearse, Bruce Procope, and Pearl Primus to support his view about the religion
of the islanders.19
As M.G. Smith discovered, the people are afraid to eat from the Plate before the
appropriate time. I was frequently told stories about children or adults who ate from
the Plate and subsequently died.20 The significance of this important part of Carria-
couan folk religion is summed up well by J.D. Elder. He refers to the Parents' Plate as
a big part of a Big Drum dance:
The Parents' Plate is really the most crucial factor in the whole dance. It is
really the only way by which the individual member of the community
can demonstrate to his peers his good standing as an honest citizen in the
community. Certainly he may do deeds which his friends and villagers do
not know of. But here in the presence of all the nations if his deeds are evil
the ancestors will shame him by not entering the 'free ring' of his dance
and by refusing to eat in his house.
What is this Parents' Plate? The Parents' Plate is really the 'Table' gaily
decorated and set out with a little of all of the food of the land a little
honey, a few pieces of bread, some 'lamby' meat, some corn, a little
tobacco everything which the person in his life-time in the village ate, a
kind of token of mortality and emphasis on the fact that the ancestors
once subsisted on food and like luxury. The Table is set upstairs in the
bedroom and visitors are usually invited to view it and to admire its
splendor. Sitting in this room are a couple of old women with second
sight. They keep watch.
At 12 midnight when the 'Cromanti cutneck' ('free ring') is danced the
ancestors are expected to come and eat of the Parents' Plate but only the
old women will see them. But once it has been reported that the Plate has
been eaten, that the ancestors have visited, the whole company of friends
and relatives become joyful. The drummers break out into a most erratic
performance. Everyone becomes possessed of the new spirit, congratulate
the votary and his family, and accept food and drink from the stewards
who come in with heaping plates and demijohns of hard liquor for the
With respect to the Parents' Plate it must be noted that the articles on
display do not disappear. Neither is their quantity reduced when eaten by
the ancestors, because to the ordinary observer no material destruction of
the food to have been eaten really takes place.21
Continuing his criticism of M.G. Smith, W.A. Redhead has this to say about receiving
dreams from the 'Old Parents':
dreams about dead parents being hungry and yet not eating what is
prepared for them is a fantasy sometime evoked by the drummers and
dancers who may need "a little change" for mark you he who calls the
tune must pay the piper and feed him well too and foist sinister inter-
pretations of dreams on a well-to-do neighbour who has not had a Feast
for a long time.22
Clearly, unless someone genuinely believed or feared that the ancestors
might 'punish' him for refusing to hold the 'Feast', he would be foolish
indeed to undertake the relatively substantial expense involved merely on
the report of someone else's dream. While some weak characters could
easily be misguided thus others would surely reject and discredit such
demands and beliefs.23
I too find it difficult to follow the logic of Redhead's denial of the importance of
dream-messages. Perhaps dreams must be "fantasy" to one of Redhead's bearing. More
importantly, he may have mistook Carriacouans' frequent denials of particular dream--
messages for their validity in general. That is, many Carriacouans distinguish between
true and specious dream-messages. Some people feel that dreams just before morning
are much more likely to be from the dead than those which occur shortly after going
to sleep. Phoney dreams are called 'self dreams' or 'standup dreams' These dreams are
'made' at the wrong time; they do not fit with other demands from the ancestors; they
vary with common belief on critical elements; they are disputed by some but not by
others; rituals held based on such dreams fail; or they are 'made' by a person with an
overriding selfish interest in the dream content. Redhead's example of one of the latter
is not sufficient grounds to deny the entire genre.
Similarly, failure by some Carriacouans to believe in any dream-message from the
ancestors does not in itself void this aspect of the folk religion. As a part of a survey of
households islanders were asked if they "believed in" the dead and if they have ever
"made a dream" (e.g., received a dream-message).24 Of the people who responded 19
of 33 stated that they believed in the Old Parents while 14 said that they did not. 40
of 123 people questioned said that they have had at least one dream from the ances-
tors. This includes 12 of 27 people over 65 years of age. Thus, everyone who believes
in the dead has not received a dream-message. Of course, these questions must not be
taken as the last word since we must assume a reluctance by some to admit to or
discuss such beliefs, particularly to an outsider. It is sufficient to say that, taking the
islanders as a whole, dreaming is an absolutely essential part of the folk religion since it
is the foremost means by which the living and the dead maintain contact.
Redhead is apparently unable to believe that Carriacouans have a religious system
which includes both Christian and West African elements. While the two are separate
in many instances, they are integrated in others. If one could "get inside" the mind a
"typical" Carriacouan I suspect that he would find no contradiction between the two
systems. My own view is that the folk religion and Christianity as practiced in
Carriacou comprise a highly unified and satisfying religion for many people while
other Carriacouans, particularly in recent years, question the validity of both aspects
of their religion.
Redhead continues his discussion of religion with this incredible statement: "Belief
in spirits and the invocation of spirits, is not peculiar to Carriacou, so on that score it
is hardly worth troubling about."2s A few paragraphs preceding the above he wrote:
Carriacouans show great reverence for their dead ancestors. The Church
bids them always to pray for the dead and there is no more popular form
of prayer than the offering of the Mass for the dead To say that
Carriacouans are Ancestor Worshippers, is strictly not true. The mixture of
custom with religious practices tends to convey to the investigator, that
this is so. In point of fact, custom dies hard among an agrarian folk and to
quote one good peasant farmer: "It doesn't do any harm and it might not
be good either. But our forefathers always did this and we just follow the
custom out of respect." This, to me, is the core of the matter, Carria-
couans are good, christian (sic) people and if their traditions sometimes get
mixed up with religious practice, it is in the time honoured habit of
peoples all over the world in the Christian Church, which is tolerant of
ancient customs and seek to wed them with true Christianity.26
Thus, although Carriacouans believe in the dead 1) it is of no consequence because it is
"custom" and not "religious practice," 2) it is because the "Church bids them always
to pray for the dead ", or 3) it is of no consequence because such beliefs are not
unique to Carriacou. Concerning the latter I'm sure that Mr. Redhead would not
similarly hold that since he is a good Christian it is of no matter since he is not along.
With reference to items 1) and 2) above Redhead takes the position that when the
people believe in spirits (the dead) it is "custom" but when they pray for the dead in
Church it is religion. On the one hand there are certain customary practices (the
Parents' Plate, dreaming of the ancestors, etc.) which are not to be considered as a part
of religion. On the other hand there is the true religion of the islanders, Christianity.
This is not a contradiction in his view, perhaps, because of the separate origin of the
two belief systems and the validation of one but not the other by the formal culture
(e.g., the British churches and the civil service).
Redhead's distinction here between the ancestor beliefs and the church is strikingly
similar to that which some Carriacouans make. Both views seem to reflect the in-
fluence of a more militant West Indian Christianity of former times which did not
tolerate "pagan" beliefs. Thus, speaking of the ancestors an informant told me, "How
could that become a religion? This is just a nice story to me. Some people believe it.
Me? I don't believe in that."27 This seems to support Redhead's position. The in-
formant here has denied belief in the dead, seemingly relegating such beliefs to
"custom" or "tradition" (e.g., a "nice story"). So, from the view-point of an anthro-
pologist, we must first establish that this man and others like him actually believe that
the dead influence the living. Secondly, we must show that such traditions can be
accurately described as "religious" in the sense we use them even if they may not be
"religious" in the conceptualizations of some of the islanders. On the first point the
same man who said that belief in the dead was just a "nice story" also told me about a
man who ate food from the Plate and was subsequently killed by the Old Parents for
breaking the ritual taboo, about dreams he had of a recently dead friend who visited
the places he frequented in life, about a dream in which his dead aunt appeared with a
miraculous cure for his crippled condition, and about a dream in which an ancestor of
a neighbour seemed to make a request for a feast. I do not dispute that there are
doubters in Carriacou but more often people disclaim their own beliefs not out of lack
of faith but because fear of ridicule or accusations of being "backward' by outsiders
(myself and Mr. Redhead included). It is clear, however, that enough people believe in
the ancestors to make them a viable part of their "extra-natural" belief system,
whether or not one describes that belief system as religion.
Now, can the entire complex of beliefs and customs with which we have been
concerned be described as a part of the religion of the people? In the anthropological
sense of "religion" it surely can. In this view the formal aspect of the religion of the
people of Carriacou relates to the churches (primarily the Catholic and Anglican
churches) while the informal part of their religion concerns the aforementioned tradi-
tions. If we define religion as having to do with a supernatural being or beings then
clearly both Christianity and beliefs in the Old Parents are religious ideas.
The last issue concerning religion which we will take up deals with Redhead's
objection to Smith's claim of "alien direction" of the churches. Redhead states:
That the Churches in Carriacou may have been under "alien direction"
during the Author's visit is not to say that "the folk (are) uncertain about
their own place within their creed, worship, and organisation." At the turn
of the century, both Churches were directed by West Indians. One at least
for 20 years and the other for over 30 years (sic). The seed was too well
sown before 1953 for any misdirection or misunderstanding.28
M.G. Smith notes that Redhead has adopted "an essentially pan-Caribbean definition
of 'aliens' "29 in this statement and goes on to say:
However, even though Mr. Redhead might also deny this, "To the people
of Carriacou, Grenada is 'the mainland,' an alien society which has for
centuries dominated them politically and commercially a place where they
remain strangers." Indeed, Mr. Redhead's position as the administrator of
Carriacou nicely illustrates this 'alien domination,' just as his well--
intentioned critique of my ethnography illustrates how kindly Grenadians
are led by their prejudices to misunderstand and devalue the institutions
and customs of Carriacou. Thus, whether administered by 'West Indians,'
Maltese or Britons, the local churches are, as reported, "under alien
direction." Further, unless their creed, worship and organisation do leave
the folk uncertain of their place within them, we cannot understand how
the people have developed and maintained such an elaborate and inte-
grated complex of beliefs, rituals and attitudes with regard to their an-
cestors, despite continuous pressure from both local versions of "the
On this issue I concur with M.G. Smith. Carriacouans continue to define people not
born on the island as outsiders or aliens. This includes West Indians who have married
Carriacouans and have lived there many years. Grenada is still called the 'mainland.'31
Between 1970 and 1972 of the eight Catholic and Anglican fathers on the island
three were born in Ireland, two in the United States, two in England, and one on the
nearby island of St. Vincent. Most of the people affiliated themselves with one or both
of these churches. The remainder belong to Protestant denominations, most of which
are led by non-Carriacouan West Indians. As far as I am aware only one small Protes-
tant church and Norman Paul's Children (an Afro-Protestant group) are led by
Carriacouans. Clearly, from an islander's view point, the churches are under alien
Yet I would not say, as does M.G. Smith, that because of the alien direction of the
churches Carriacou people "are uncertain about their own place within them."32
Here, I would have to agree with Redhead. While Carriacouans have been traditionally
excluded from the priesthoods the have participated as acolytes and assistants. Al-
though these positions are "low" in the formal church hierarchy they are considered
"high" amongst many of the folk. Some acolytes are respected 'old heads' and are
called upon to chair prayer meetings and interpret church ritual. Thus, traditionally
Carriacouans seem to conceive of the priests as outsiders and their assistants as Carria-
couans. The latter's place is considered as secure within the church as the former's
although less exalted.
With respect to church worship and creed it seems that Carriacouans are even more
at home within the various churches. They interpret church ritual and theology to fit
their folk beliefs. Thus, the church and the folk religion are partly intertwined and
each has affected the other. Depending upon the circumstances, an individual might
turn to the church, he might confine his activities totally within the folk sphere, or he
might utilize both. Similarly, the activities of one parallel those of the other: we have
seen how most ritual activity in the folk religion involves the dead. This is true in the
church as well: commemorative masses are popular and All Souls Day and Easter are
more important religious days than Christmas. This is why the church has been des-
cribed as the formal aspect of the religion of the islanders and the folk beliefs, rituals,
and associated activities as the folk aspect.33 Each compliments the other and in this
sense, many Carriacouans are secure in both. Further, although in a manner of
speaking the folk religion of Carriacou "developed" locally it is primarily an amalga-
mation of West African belief systems which came about only partly in response to
Christianity and other conditions in the New World with which the Africans were
faced. That is to say, if the various West African groups from which Carriacouans have
derived this aspect of their culture were combined under more favourable conditions
than occurred in the Caribbean e.g., free choice their new religion might perhaps
resemble Carriacou's folk religion in a general way. Insofar as the new religion differed
from that found in Carriacou we could attribute the difference primarily to structural,
functional, and ecological dissimilarities between the two e.g., proselytizing Chris-
tianity, slavery, migratory wage labour, the climate, etc. Indeed, research on urban and
suburban industrial conditions in Nigeria, Ghana, and Zaire could partially resolve this
Turning our attention away from religion we find that Redhead disagrees with
Smith's description of the ethnic groups of Carriacou:
Another error of presumption is that Carriacouans are "bilingual in English
and a French patois, and share common cycles of Zien (Anancy) Stories."
The truth is that Carriacou is divided into three Groups. Those of Scottish
descent in the North-Eastern Sector, those of African descent, who speak
English only, in the middle sector, and those who are of African descent,
but are bilingual in English and French patois and who are mainly the
subjects of Dr. Smith's investigations. Indeed the middle group are reminis-
cent of the English Cockney, adding on h's before vowels and deducting
them where they are required.34
The following is M.G. Smith's rejoinder:
This sociography of Carriacou can be compared with that given in my
book; but Mr. Redhead omits the French-patois speakers of Petit Martini-
que in "the North-Eastern Sector," who claim French ancestry and he
sweepingly denies the knowledge or use of French patois among the
"African" population of "middle sector." Nonetheless I have attended
wakes at Top Hill where patois was spoken as well as English; and I have
also encountered patois at Beausejour and Mount Pleasant all in Mr.
Redhead's "middle sector." Finally, it seems rather odd that although the
Big Drum or Nation Dance and the folk rituals associated with it are
common to all Negroes in Carriacou, a large section of them do not
understand the French patois that is used in these events.35
Once again Smith's position accurately reflects the conditions as I found them in the
early 1970's. Older people in all parts of Carriacou and in Petit Martinique speak
French 'Patois.' Many young people today speak little or no patois, although most
understand words and phrases which have been integrated into the English dialect.
Patois is still the language of ritual (the Big Drum) and is occasionally used in calyp-
soes. Some 'Nancy Stories' continue to be told in patois and many of the place names
are in this language. Moreover, everyone in Carriacou and in Petit Martinique speaks a
dialect of English. In its relationship to Standard West Indian English this dialect is
analogous to patois and its relationship to French. Finally, through the influence of
migration, increased literacy and the radio most people in Carriacou understand
Standard West Indian English and some speak it as well.
Ethnically, Carriacouans divide themselves into two groups: the African people and
the Scottish people. The former the vast majority of the islanders is further
subdivided by 'Nation' (e.g., Cromanti, 'lbo,' 'Moko', etc.). The Cromanti Nation is
considered to be the most important. It is understood that both the African people
and most of the Scottish people have African ancestors. Furthermore, the French
cultural heritage seems to have influenced both groups, particularly the African
people. Patois speakers are to be found amongst Scottish people as well as the African
people. The Scottish people trace their descent from shipwrights and seamen brought
to the island in the nineteenth century. The "Scottish" culture of these people in-
cludes Irish, English, French and West African elements as well as Scottish. This group,
once physically and socially isolated,36 recently has begun to integrate with the rest of
Redhead is accurate insofar as there are customary differences, particularly in
speech patterns, between the south of the island (centering in L'Esterre), the "middle
sector" (primarily in isolated ridge communities centering on La Resource), and "the
northern sector," centering on Windward and one of the two villages of Petit
Martinique. While patois speakers are found everywhere they are concentrated in
L'Esterre. Redhead incorrectly states that only English is spoken in "the middle
sector." With the exception of L'Esterre, more patois is spoken in La Resource than
elsewhere. Today, ritual specialists drummers and singers the most interesting
speech distinctions the dropping of H's are found mainly in La Resource. In the
recent past, however, drummers have come from Belle Vue South and Harvey Vale and
a young drummer is continuing the skill of his father in Bogles. Drummers are to be
found on nearby Union Island on Petit Martinique where the only female drummer
The last criticism of M.G. Smith's research by Redhead which we will take up
concerns Smith's use of the phrase, "women's houses:
I have tried hard to differentiate between "Women's Houses" and other
houses, but since my return to Carriacou in 1961, there are no wattle
houses left and the great majority of houses in L'Esterre are wooden
houses of varying sizes (depending on the economic standing of the owner)
that I must conclude that all these "women houses" (sic) were blown away
in the hurricane of 1955 and so must quite a lot of other things the
Smith's reply is this:
Mr. Redhead concludes (sic) his critique with some scathing comments of
the category of 'Women's houses' reported in my book. These are (or
were) one-roomed thatch-covered structures of daub-and-wattle built for
and owned by the women who lived in them with or without their male
partners and children. In Carriacou such units were described synony-
mously as "dirt houses" or "women's houses" since men would neither
build them for themselves nor own them.
Indeed, those men who lived in such houses thereby identified themselves
as social failures. At the same time, it was virtually taboo for women to
cohabit consensually with unmarried men in houses of wood, concrete or
stone, whoever owned them. Thus females living in such unions had no
need to fear eviction, as most consensual cohabitations took place in
Since he failed to find any wattle houses on returning to Carriacou in
1961, Mr. Redhead concluded that "all these women's houses (sic) were
blown away in the hurricane of 1955, and so must quite a lot of other
things the Author relates." The insinuation here is that I have either "in-
vented" or "presumed" this folk category, along with much else in my
account. However, the distribution of these and all other types of houses
in L'Esterre in 1953 is mapped on p. 75 of my book; and the occupants of
these women's houses were listed clearly: "Of the fifteen 'dirt houses' at
L'Esterre in 1953, ten were inhabited by women and their children, and
the other five by couples keeping,"" that is, cohabitating consensually.40
Once again M.G. Smith's analysis is supported by current facts.41 Some of the wattle--
and-daub houses were destroyed by 'Janet,' the hurricane of 1955. In 1971 a few
wattle-and-daub structures complete with 'Jinny Grass' roofing were still to be
found in Carriacou, all of them in L'Esterre. These included three houses on the slopes
of Ma Chapelle and one in Retreat. The builder, owner, and household head of each
was a woman. Two were quite old and one was a lady who lived with her
daughter-in-law (her son's girl friend) and her grand-daughter. The only completed
wattle-and-daub structure in Carriacou, to my knowledge, was a kitchen. It was
located in Experience, L'Esterre. Elsewhere on the island there were numerous wattle
pens and sheds for animals or for corn storage. Thus, while there were 15 'dirt' houses
in L'Esterre in 1953 there were only three in 1971.
As M.G. Smith discovered, unmarried women lived in wattle-and-daub houses. Such
houses are called wattlee', 'mud', 'dirt', 'African', or 'women's' houses. Married couples
or a married woman whose husband has migrated lived in wood or cement houses. The
former are called 'board houses' and the latter 'wall houses' or 'Aruba houses' The
reason for this distinction based on the marital status of the female principal is
apparent when one understands the relationships between marriage, migration, and the
Traditionally there have been very few opportunities to earn money locally. There-
fore, many islanders emigrated to seek work. Before the 1960's most of the migrants
were men. Since it was the men who earned the money they were able to build more
expensive houses than unattached women, nearly all of whom had never left Carriacou
for employment elsewhere. Furthermore, in Carriacou as in many West Indian societies
marriage has high prestige. Men, particularly former migrants, are expected to marry.
It is customary that a newly married couple move into a new house or that the
husband emigrate shortly after marriage so that he can send his wife or his father
money to have a house completed upon his return to Carriacou.
Motivations for migration are to save enough money to build a house, perhaps buy
some land, and marry. As a result nearly all adult men over the age of 30 years are
married and live in their own house with their wife and children. Because of the nearly
universal migration of men, women over the age of 25 years have outnumbered men
by from two to one to three to one. Approximately one-half of the adult women on
the island are married. A married woman either lives with her husband, in the house he
built for her while he is abroad, or with relatives if her husband is abroad but has not
yet built a house. Married women in the first two categories, therefore, live in the most
expensive houses. Widows also live in relatively more expensive houses. Unmarried
women, on the other hand, not being able to afford such houses, live in the least
expensive dwellings. This is a factor, then, in the development of the values and the
social structure of the islanders e.g., the dominance of the men, the feeling that
this is as it should be, and the concomitant "taboo" of unmarried women living in ex-
By the early 1970's small rectangular wooden houses with a maximum of one rear
shed addition small 'board houses' had replaced mud houses as the dwelling for
unmarried women (with the exception of the three wattle-and-daub houses in
L'Esterre). Larger rectangular houses with two shed additions, a higher elevation from
the ground, and perhaps a cement cistern and a verandah, all cement or wall houses
including Aruba houses, and prefabricated Guyana houses are now the dwellings for
married men and their families. Today the distinction between these two areas is still
clear. The exceptions are, as in 1953, a handful of couples who 'keep' in the women's
houses (small board houses). M.G. Smith quite correctly foresaw this development: "I
would expect that the old distinction between women's and men's houses is now
drawn between inferior and superior buildings of other types."42
With the increase of female migration for gainful employment and an increase of
marriages between Carriacouans abroad, and with the weakening authority of men and
elders, the distinction between types of houses based upon the sex and married state
of the owner will probably change. The facts will perhaps be more explainable on
purely economic grounds rather than on sex and married state: e.g., returning women
with money who are not married may choose to and not be socially barred from -
building the more prestigious houses (e.g., wall and Guyana houses). More signifi-
cantly, as M.G. Smith noted, 'keeping' could also increase.43
In conclusion, we have found that M.G. Smith's research holds up very well indeed
against Redhead's criticisms. Redhead correctly took issue with Smith's explanation of
maroon. Yet both, if the ethnographic facts have not significantly changed through the
years, failed to appreciate the range of activities called "maroon" When one looks at
the full scope of M.G. Smith's publications on Carriacou, this is a relatively minor
Concerning the Creole elite, which counts Mr. Redhead as a member, M.G. Smith
They identify the 'good and proper' by reference to the Victorian
culture which they uphold as Creole elite. They thus elevate British institu-
tions of the Victorian period to the status of hallowed norms, and in some
cases identify civilisation, in contrast to primitivism, by adherence to a
particular church, by support of the British Raj, parliamentary institu-
tions, and the like.44
R.M. Nettleford, in an editorial to the volume in which Smith's article appears, agrees:
it is well worth underlining Professor Smith's legitimate concern with
the denial by so many of the Caribbean elite of our people's "deepest
values, customs and beliefs" on the grounds that any recognition of such
values, customs or beliefs would mean surrender to a primitive atavism.45
Without denying the existence of the British element in both the formal institutions
and the folk culture of Carriacouans I can only concur with both Smith's and Nettle-
ford's opinions on this score. It may well be that it is not these British retentions -
specifically the churches and the formal administration which prepare the islanders
for the modern world but rather their folk traditions. Indeed, it has been in part
because of their folkways that the islanders, with an unselfconscious pride, have been
able to exist as a part of the modern world. Whether or not one believes in all their
values respect for elders and the dead, dominance of men, emphasis on saving
money, and pride in one's African heritage one must admit that the islanders 46 have
been well served by their world view and have therefore avoided some of the more
abrasive effects of twentieth century living felt by other migrant societies and many of
the rest of us as well.
DONALD R. HILL
1. Redhead, W.A. Truth, fact and tradition in Carriacou. Carribean Quarterly, Vol. 16, No. 3,
pp. 61-63, 1970.
Smith M.G. Kinship and Community in Carriacou. Yale University Press, New Haven, 1962
2. Smith, M.G. The transformation of land rights by transmission in Carriacou. In M.G. Smith,
The Plural Society in the British West Indies, 1965, Berkeley: University of California Press, pp.
op. cit 1962
Dark Puritan: The life and Work of Norman Paul. Kingston: Department of Extra-Mural
Studies, University of the West Indies, 1963
A note on truth, fact and tradition in Carriacou. Caribbean Quarterly, Vol. 17, Nos. 3 and 4,
pp. 128-138, 1971.
Procope, Bruce Launching a schooner in Carriacou. Caribbean Quarterly, Vol. 4, No. 2, pp.
Pearse, Andrew The big drum dance in Carriacou. Ethnic Folkways Library Album, p. 1011,
3. Research on Carriacou and an additional year in Trinidad (November, 1971 to November,
1972) was funded by grants from the Midwestern Universities Consortium for International Affairs
(MUCIA) and Fulbright-Hays. Recording tape was provided by the Archives of Traditional Music,
Indiana University, Bloomington
4. Redhead, W.A. op. cit., p. 61, 1970
5. Smith, M.G. op. cit., pp. 26-30, 1962
6. Smith, M.G. op. cit., p. 104, 1962
7. Hill, Donald R. "England I want to Go:" The Impact of Migration on a Caribbean Com-
munity. Unpublished Ph.D. dissertation, Indiana University, Bloomington, p. 35, 51, May, 1973.
Smith, M.G. op. cit., p. 240, 1956
With reference to this issue Smith's data is based on 532 cases drawn from one village while
mine includes only 31 cases from entire island.
8. Smith, M.G. op. cit., pp. 10, 73, 1962
Please note that words which have special meanings in Carriacou, such as maroon, have been
placed within apostrophe marks the first time they appear in the text, 1962
9. Smith, M.G. op. cit., p. 10, 1962
10. Redhead, W.A. op. cit., p. 61, 1970
11. Smith, M.G. op. cit., p. 129, 1971
Procope, Bruce op. cit., p. 123, 1955
12. Hill, Donald R. op. cit., pp. 66-700, 1973
13. Smith, M.G. op. cit., pp. 141-143, 1962
Hill, Donald R. op. cit., pp. 675-688, 699, 1973. Herein one may find a description of the
dream-message maroon and the Sacrifice.
14. It is also called a saraca, salaca, sacrifice or the 'Table'.
15. For this reason Procope wrote of the helping as being identical to the saraca or maroon. See
the citation below.
Procope, Bruce op. cit., p. 123, 1955
16. Redhead, W.A. op. cit., p. 134, 1970
17. Smith, M.G. op. cit., 133, 1971
18, Smith, M.G. op. cit., p. 133, 1971, and
Smith, M.G. op. cit., 1963
19. Smith, M.G. op. cit., p. 134, 1971
20. Hill, Donald R. op. cit., pp. 707-708, 1973.
21. Elder, J.D. Transcriptions of a radio broadcast on the big drum dance of Carriacou, Port-of-
Spain: Government Broadcasting Unit, May 21, 1972
22. Redhead, W.A. op. cit., p. 63, 1970
23. Smith, M.G. op. cit., p. 132, 171.
24. Hill, Donald R. op. cit., pp. 739-742, 1973
25. Redhead, W.A. op. cit., p. 63, 1970
26. Redhead, W.A. op. cit., p. 62, 1970
27. Hill, Donald R. op. cit., p. 657, 1973
28. Redhead, W.A. op. cit., p. 62, 1970
29. Smith, M.G. op. cit., p. 135, 1971
30. Smith, M.G. op. cit., p. 135, 1971
31. Please note that I am not judging the merits of whether or not Carriacou should psycholo-
gically and culturally be a part of Grenada. The point is that for Carriacouans it is not but for
Grenadians it is. One time I remember Premier Gairy spoke of 'Grenadians' while addressing an
assembly of Carriacouans. Pausing briefly, he noticed the audience assumed he meant "people from
the island of Grenada." He then felt it was necessary to qualify himself. He said something to the
effect that "We are all Grenadians." The Carriacouans remained unconvinced. Mr. Redhead, a
respected Grenadian, also seemed to have this typically Grenadian view.
32. Smith, M.G. op. cit., p. 135, 1971
33. In this I am following after Smith who first discovered the dualisms which run through the
entire social organization including administration, education, social control, agriculture, etc.
34. Redhead, W.A. op. cit., p. 61, 1970
35. Smith, M.G. op. cit., 130, 1971 and
Smith, M.G. op. cit., pp. 15-17, 1962. This is the reference to which Smith refers in this
36. Smith, M.G. op. cit., p. 17, 1962
37. Redhead, W.A. op. cit., p. 63, 1970
38. Smith, M.G. op. cit., pp. 76, 118, 122, 185, 189-190, 245-247, 1962. These are M.G. Smith's
39. Smith, M.G. op. cit., p. 190, 1962. This is Smith's original reference.
40. Smith, M.G. op. cit., pp. 130-131, 1971. This citation refers to the above three paragraphs.
41. Hill, Donald R. op. cit., pp. 266-277, 291-296, 1973. Herein is an examination of this
controversy in greater detail.
42. Smith, M.G. op. cit., p. 131, 1971. Smith's terms "inferior" and "superior" do not fully
account for Carriacouans attitudes with respect to house types. Although they generally prefer
board or wall houses some people point to the features of the mud houses which are superior -
e.g., they are cooler, easier to build, cheaper, etc.
43. Smith. M.G. op. cit., p. 131, 1971.
44. Smith, M.G. op. cit., p. 136, 1971
45. Nettleford, Rex.Editorial. Caribbean Quarterly, Vol. 17, Nos. 3 and 4, p. 5, 1971.
46. I should say the "male" islanders here for it is they who both receive the major "benefits" of
being Carriacouans insofar as their society has been male dominated. Men, in their wage migrations,
have felt the greatest effects of the outside world.o
EXTRACTS FROM THE GRENADA HANDBOOK
Part I Fedons Rebellion
The year 1795 is remarkable in the annals of
the colony as the one in which the French Re-
public, through the medium of the notorious
Victor Hugues, made a determined effort to
regain possession of it by bringing about an
insurrection of the French inhabitants and
slaves. In order to fully comprehend the
position of affairs in the colony which rendered
such an attempt possible, it is necessary to go
back for some years, as well as to consider the
state of the West Indies generally at the time.
When the colony was ceded to Great Britain
by the Treaty of Paris in 1793 there was a con-
siderable number of French colonists, both
white and coloured, in possession of lands, and
by the terms of that Treaty they were con-
firmed in their possessions, or given eighteen
months to sell out and emigrate. Very few
appear to have left the colony, and when a Con-
stitution and representative Legislature were
granted to it, they, notwithstanding the fact
that they were Roman Catholic (the professors
of which religion were then labouring under
political disabilities in the mother country),
were allowed in effect the same political privi-
leges as their Protestant fellowsubjects, while
British colonists who were Roman Catholics
were debarred from the exercise of those privi-
leges. The object of the British Government
was, no doubt, to conciliate their new subjects,
and in this it was successful, but at the same
time it led to the most intense jealousy between
the two bodies of inhabitants those of
French origin on the one hand, and the incom-
ing tide of British settlers on the other.
Upon the capture of the island by the
French in 1779, the smothered animosity of
the French section broke out, and for the next
four years the sufferings of the British settlers
were acute, so much so that the Government of
France had to intervene on several occasions to
cause justice to be done. It may well be
imagined, therefore, that when the island was
finally restored to Great Britain by the Treaty
of Versailles in 1783, and the British inhabi-
tants again came into ascendency, nothing that
could weaken the French colonists and take
away their power was left undone. The British
Government was at first no party to this
oppression, for upon the cession of the colony
the French residents were, as we have seen,
again given the same privileges they had pos-
sessed before the recapture of the island by
their nation: but although laying down this
specific line of policy the Home Government
appears to have concurred in the subsequent
proceedings of the Grenada Legislature, and the
struggle, which began with the wresting of all
the French churches and Church lands from
their legitimate holders and giving them over to
the Protestant Church and to the Crown, finally
resulted in the Roman Catholics being practi-
cally deprived in 1792-93 of their political
This was the position of affairs in Grenada in
1794, a year in which stirring events were
taking place in other West Indian Islands. The
vibrations of the mighty wave of the French
Revolution of 1789 were in the air, and in the
island of Haiti or St. Domingo, had borne fruit
in 1791 in an uprising of the coloured people
and negro slaves, who, after a war of extermina-
tion directed against the whites, were by the
year 1793 in practical possession of the French
section of the island. A British expedition was
sent from Jamaica to capture that part of the
island, but after varying success the attempt,
which spread over several years, was
abandoned. To the black and coloured popu-
lations of the other settlements in the West
Indies the success of their congeners had, how-
ever, sounded a note of awakening. Crushed by
slavery, and even such of them as were free
labouring under political and social disabilities,
it is not to be wondered at that a prospect of
freedom by similar means became the pro-
minent idea in their minds, and that, in the
alternative, their hopes and longings were
centred on the new French Republic, which
boldly proclaimed to the world the triple
doctrine of liberty, equality and fraternity, and
by a decree dated April 4, 1792, enacted that
'people of colour and free negroes in the
colonies ought to enjoy an equality of political
rights with the whites,' and which, too, had re-
quired its commissioners in Haiti to report to
France the best method of effecting the
abolition of negro slavery in toto.
While all these elements of discord were fer-
menting in Grenada, and rebellion only
required a leader, the emissaries of Victor
Hugues arrived upon the scene. In March and
April, 1794, war having been declared by
France against Great Britain in the previous
year, General Sir Charles Grey and Admiral Sir
J. Jervis had taken the French islands of
Martinique, St. Lucia, and Guadeloupe, but
they were unable to hold the latter island, and
by December of the same year it was again in
the hands of the French under the command of
MM. Lebas, Goyand, and Victor Hugues, Com-
missioners of the National convention, the last-
named being practically supreme. The forces at
his disposal being insufficient for him to do
more than hold Guadeloupe against the British,
he determined to attempt the capture of some
of the other British islands by stirring up insur-
rections. His first intrigues were directed against
Grenada, and his emissaries, finding, as has been
seen, good ground on which to sow the seed of
treason, succeeded by promise of assistance of
arms, ammunition, and an armed force, and, in
some cases, by threats, in inciting the French
colonists to rise in arms against the British rule.
As leader of the insurrection, a coloured planter
named Julien Fidon, who owned the Belvidere
estate on the heights of St. John's parish, was
selected, and a commission given to him as
General Commandant under the French Repub-
lic, commissions as officers of the French army
being also given to other coloured men called
Stanislaus Besson, Charles Nogues, and Jean
Pierre La Valette.
At this critical juncture of the colony's life
its affairs were administered by an officer
whose peaceful and unsuspicious nature
ill-suited him to have the reins of government in
such a stormy time, and, notwithstanding the
manifest danger of inertness while the French
were known to be on the alert in his neighbour-
hood, no steps were taken to put the island in a
proper state of defence. On his behalf it must,
however, be stated that the British garrison was
lamentably small and weak; for although in
1794, when the colony was again occupied, a
pledge seems to have been given that two regi-
ments would always be stationed there in
reliance on which promise the colony had ex-
pended the sum of 20,000 currency in the
purchase of Richmond Hill, and had provided
materials and slave labour for the erection of
fortifications and barracks there numbers of
the troops had been withdrawn for expedi-
tionary purposes to other islands, until at the
outbreak of the insurrection there were only
192 rank and file of the regular forces in
Grenada, and these were all posted at St.
George's and in very bad health. There existed,
of course, a body of militia, composed of
European settlers and free coloured people, but
as a proportion of them were of French birth or
extraction, they were not trusted, and their
weapons were studiously kept from them until
their periodical musters for drill; besides which
their state of discipline was deplorable. Further-
more, the white population was scattered all
over the island on the several plantations, so
that altogether the conditions were such as to
require a strong hand at the helm, if the colony
were to be prevented from falling an easy prey
to any well-planned attack.
At midnight on March 2, 1795, the storm
broke; a body of insurgents under Fedon sur-
rounded the town of Grenvillet and a horrible
massacre of the British subjects ensued. Neither
age nor sex proved a bar to the ferocity of the
rebels, and by morning the town was a reeking
shambles, from which the butchers retreated to
the mountains, laden with spoil. Simultaneous-
ly there was an outbreak at Gouyave on the
opposite side of the island, but here the rebels
contented themselves with seizing the British
inhabitants, and hauling them, bound and half
naked, to F6don's property, Belvidere, where
they proceeded to fortify the estate works, and
finally to entrench themselves behind rude
earthworks on the summit of an adjacent
mountain,2 now known as Morne Fddon, or
Fddon's Camp. Here they were joined by nearly
all of the French colonists, the more respect-
able of whom were, no doubt, driven to this
step by the fear of Victor Hugues, whose pro-
clamation threatening a terrible retribution on
all who failed to join the movement had been
well circulated among them.
Lieutenant-Governor Home, instead of being
at headquarters at such a time of danger, was
spending some days with a party of gentlemen
at his estate, Paraclete, about fourteen miles
from St. George's, on the hills to the west of
Grenville, and his proceedings were so ill-
advised and extraordinary that it would seem
as if he was irresistibly driven to his cruel fate
by the iron hand of destiny. Immediately on
the news of the Grenville massacre reaching
him, instead of returning at once over the
mountains to St. George's, which was safely
done by a messenger he despatched, he and his
party rode off to Sauteurs, on the extreme
north of the island, where they embarked on
the morning of the 3rd, in the sloop 'New Dia-
mond' for St. George's. When they arrived off
Gouyave, a small vessel (which ultimately pro-
ved to be one of the ordinary coasters) was seen
sailing from the south towards the town, where-
upon a sudden panic seems to have seized them,
and they attempted to land in the sloop's boat,
never contemplating the possibility that
Gouyave might also be in a state of rebellion.
They had barely pushed off from the vessel's
side when the battery at Gouyave opened fire
upon her, and she immediately ran out to sea,
leaving the boat behind. The party was then
easily captured by canoes from the shore, and
taken to Belvidere to join the other unfortu-
nates there. These unhappy people, who
numbered fifty-one altogether, were subjected
to every indignity that malice could suggest,
and were further informed by Fe'don that upon
any attack being made upon his camp they
would be slaughtered without mercy.
Upon the news of the Grenville disaster
reaching St. George's, on March 3, a council of
war was held under the presidency of Mr.
Kenneth Mackenzie, the Attorney-General, and
when, later on, the capture of the Lieutenant-
Governor was ascertained, he assumed the
Government and the chief command of the
forces, as Senior Member of the Council, and
addressed himself with energy to the difficult
task before him. He despatched letters, asking
for assistance, to the Spanish Governor of
Trinidad, Don Jose Maria Chacon, to Lieuten-
ant-Governor Seton, of St. Vincent, and to the
Commander-in-Chief of the British forces, Sir
John Vaughan, at Martinique, the headquarters.
Don Chacon immediately responded to the call,
and the Spanish armed brigs 'Describidor' and
'Vigilante', and the schooner 'Decinde', under
the command of Don Cosmo de Churruca, with
forty soldiers on board, arrived off Grenville on
March 5, with the intention of attacking the
French privateers who were supposed to be
there, but none were found. Don Cosmo there-
upon brought his squadron to St. George's,
where the soldiers were utilised to garrison Fort
George, the British regular forces, with a
detachment of militia, having been sent to
Gouyave, under the command of Captain
Gurdon, of the 58th Regiment. Captain
Gurdon, finding that town unoccupied, had
retaken possession of it on the evening of the
5th, and his further instructions were to assault
the rebel encampment at Belvidere, his troops
being with that object reinforced by a body of
seamen, under Captain Rogers, R.N., from
H.M.S. 'Quebec', which had just arrived; but he
seems to have had no confidence in his forces,
who were more or less in a state of intoxication
from the time they seized the town, and, the
militia detachment becoming openly mutinous,
he, after repelling an assault on the town on the
morning of the 6th, and advancing on the
following day as far as the first rebel outpost at
Chadeau, or Mount St. John, retreated to
Gouyave, and thence to St. George's on the
8th, having effected nothing.
The St. Vincent Government was unable to
render any assistance, as they had to cope with
a similar rising of the Caribs brought about in
that island by Victor Hugues: but Sir John
Vaughan lost no time after receiving Mr.
MacKenzie's despatch in acceding to the
demand for reinforcements, and on March 12
Brigadier-General Lindsay arrived at Grenada
with a small detachment. On the 15th he
marched against the rebels by way of Gouyave,
and on the 17th carried their outworks at
Chadean and Belvidere with but slight loss; and,
if nightfall had not prevented further
operations on that day, it is possible that
further success would have attended his efforts.
The weather, however, at all times a powerful
factor in tropical warfare, declared next day
against the success of the expedition, and the
torrents of rain which descended, not only
damped the spirits of the soldiers and their
leader, but prostrated a considerable number of
them with fever. Among these was, unfortunate-
ly, the General himself, and, in a fit of delirium,
on the 22nd he put an end to his existence, and
consequently to the expedition.
The Spanish soldiers upon this returned to
Trinidad, from whence they had been spared
only in view of the great emergency of the case,
as the garrison there was too small for the
Governor to afford any prolonged assistance to
his neighbours, willing as he was to do so.
The next attempt to supress the rising
resulted apparently from the urgent request of
the President, who personally visited the scene
of action the evening before, and it was made
under the command of Lieutenant-Colonel
Campbell on April 8, the regular troops (who
had been reinforced on the 1st by the arrival of
the 25th and 29th Regiments) and the militia
being assisted on this occasion by the 150
volunteers from H.M.S. 'Quebec' and
'Resource', and other ships of war and
transports, under the command of Captain
Watkins, of the 'Resource'. The assault on
Fedon's camp was characterized by intrepid
bravery on the part of the assailants, and the
defence was most obstinately conducted. The
difficulty of storming the crest of an almost
inaccessible mountain protected by a strong
abattis of felled trees, in the face of a galling
fire, and ground so slippery from continuous
tropical rains that even a foothold was difficult
to obtain, had, however, been under-estimated,
and, although officers and men vied with one
another in brilliant acts of valour, they were
compelled to retreat at nightfall, having lost 95
killed and wounded, among the former being
Captain Stopford, of the 9th, Captain Ewan, of
the 25th, and Ensign Baillie, of the 29th Foot.
While this assault was taking place a horrible
tragedy was being enacted within the camp on
the top of the mountain. As has been stated,
there were fifty-one British subjects in the
power of the rebels, among them being Mr.
Home, the Lieutenant-Governor, Mr. Farquhar,
his A.D.C., the Hon. Alexander Campbell, a
member of the Council, and several leading men
of the community. These unfortunate people
had undergone much suffering since their
capture, and had been repeatedly warned by
Fedon that, upon his camp being assaulted, they
would be killed, and he had compelled them to
write and say as much to the President and
Council This threat was now being carried into
execution, and during the British assault just
described, they were, with the exception of
three, remorsely butchered in cold blood. The
three saved were the Rev. Francis M'Mahon and
Dr. John Hay, the clergyman and medical
officer of Fedon's district, and Mr. William
Kerr. The victims were confined (most of them
in stocks) in a small hut near the summit of the
mountain, and from this they were made to
emerge singly and be killed. With one or two
exceptions, where protracted suffering had
affected their minds, they met their fate as
became their race and station. There can be
little doubt that the immediate cause of this
execrable deed was the death of Fidon's
brother, who fell early in the day; but that
inhuman monster had evidently made up his
mind from the first to rid himself of his
captives in this manner, so as to prevent them
being restored to their friends if the British
attack were successful, and the order to kill
them was given by him at the time when a
brilliant charge by the British brought the
attack up to the outworks on the summit of the
After this failure to carry the rebel strong-
hold the fighting languished. An abortive
attempt had been made on April 2 to take Pilot
Hill at Grenville, which was occupied by the
insurgents in considerable force. It seems that,
finding them better entrenched and prepared
than they had been led to believe, the troops
and militia under Captain Gurdon, who had
been detailed for the assault, lost heart and
retired to their camp at Observatory, where
fever soon made its appearance and rendered
them unfit to further operations in this field for
Brigadier-General Nicholls arrived on April
13, and assumed the command of the force,
and the Legislature, which was convened on
May 7, entertained great hopes that he would
make an end of their troubles; but, beyond
resuming possession of Pilot Hill, which was
evacuated by the rebels upon his advance on
April 27, and embodying a corps of loyal slaves,
which was called the Corps of Loyal Black
Rangers, and did good service eventually, he
pursued a policy of inactivity, asserting that he
had not a sufficient force to quell the insur-
rection, and was waiting for reinforcements,
whose advent was frequently announced, only
to end in disappointment. On April 24 the
colony sustained a severe loss in the person of
Captain Rogers, on the H.M.S. 'Quebec', who
fell a victim to Bulam fever. This gallant officer,
from the time of his arrival on March 6, had
infused new life into the sorely tried colonists,
and it was largely due to the adoption of his
advice and to the hopes inspired by his presence
that panic was avoided and the colony saved as
a British possession. In recognition of his
invaluable services, the Legislature in 1799
caused a handsome tablet to be erected to his
memory in St. George's Church.
Gouyave was abandoned by Colonel Shaw
on October 16 under circumstances rather dis-
creditable to that officer, and the forces were
gradually drawn from all the outposts, the last
to be evacuated being Pilot Hill on March 2,
1796, the little garrison there effecting a
masterly retreat by way of Sauteurs, in the face
of overwhelming numbers of the enemy. Out-
side of the circle of fortifications surrounding
St. George's, and of a post at Calivigny,
intended to check landing at Port Egmont, the
rebels were then in undisputed possession of
the whole island. They several times summoned
St. George's to surrender, but their demands
were treated with contempt, and their threats
with counter-threats. At one time they
occupied Mt. St. Eloi, close to the town, but
from this they were promptly dislodged, and
the post thereafter held by a British guard. In
the meanwhile they completely ruined every
estate belonging to a British subject, both build-
ings and crops being destroyed by fire, and all
loyal persons who fell into their hands were put
to the sword. The condition of the British
inhabitants, now all concentrated in St.
George's, was truly pitiable, an outbreak of
Bulam fever and scarcity of food being added
to their other troubles; and, but for the deter-
mined front put on their difficulties by the
Legislature under the direction of Mr.
Mackenzie, the President, who filled his post
with great tact and ability, the colony must
have been completely ruined by the enormous
expenditure it was compelled to keep up for
the maintenance of the military and naval force
to avert a famine. The Government, however,
boldly drew bills on the Imperial Treasury for
40,0001., which, to the credit of the Govern-
ment of the day, be it recorded, were promptly
honoured; and in all 100,0001. was borrowed
from the same source.4 The entire cost of the
rebellion to the colony is stated to have been
230,0001., and the losses to the inhabitants
were roughly estimated at 2,500,0001
On December 13 Mr. Mackenzie left for
Martinique, and the administration of the
Government devolved on the Hon. Samuel
Mitchell, the senior Member of Council. His
first act was to send a deputation of gentlemen
to Barbados, there to urge upon the military
authorities the urgent necessity for sending a
strong force to reduce the rebels; but no
immediate results rewarded this effort, because
of the large force despatched from England in
November for the relief of the West Indies, only
about 2,000 men succeeded in reaching
Barbados, three successive storms having
shattered the fleet transporting it. Affairs
remained in this state until March, 1796, when,
having received reinforcements of about 800
men, General Nicholls awoke from his torpor,
and carried by assault the rebel fortifications at
Post Royal in St. Andrew's on the 25th.
Towards the end of 1795 they had occupied
this post, which gave them the control of
Marquis Bay, where they regularly received men
and supplies from the French islands by way of
Trinidad, which at this time swarmed with
French republicans, who overawed the small
Spanish garrison, and did what they pleased in
the place. The rebels made a valiant defence of
Post Royal, but were unable to withstand a
magnificent charge with the bayonet made by
the Buffs under Brigadier-General Campbell,
the same officer who conducted the assault on
Morne Quaqua on April 8, 1795.
A new turn was given to events this month
by the arrival at Barbados on the 17th of
General Sir Ralph Abercromby, who assumed
the chief military command in the West Indies;
and at the same time Mr. Alexander Houston
also arrived there with a commission as Lieuten-
ant-Governor of Grenada, where he landed on
April 5, and assumed the administration of the
Government. After a brief delay, caused by his
operations against St. Lucia, which were
crowned by success in May, Sir Ralph reached
Carriacou from St. Vincent (where a similar
task awaited him) on June 6, and landed at
Palmiste Bay in Grenada with a strong force on
the 9th. After inspecting the rebel lines, and
expressing his dissatisfaction at the delay which
had occurred in supressing the rising, he settled
the line of operations and returned to St.
Vincent. On the 19th June his plan of assault
was carried out under the command of General
Nicholls, when the insurgents were utterly
routed and driven from their strongholds in the
The rebels at the time were in possession of
four fortified posts in the interior of the islands
- one at Mount St. Margaret, another at Black
Forest, a third at the head of Beausejour
Valley, and the fourth and most important on
Mount Fddon. Against the first two a brigade
under General Campbell was despatched; a
small detachment was sent to Beausejour; and
two brigades, one commanded by Count
d'Heillimer, consisting of Lowenstein's Jagers
and the corps of Royal Etrangers, and the other
being the 57th Regiment under Lieutenant-
Colonel Gledstanes, proceeded to the reduction
of the chief stronghold. Count d'Heillimer's
instructions were to proceed by night round the
eastern face of the mountain and occupy the
summit beyond the rebel camp, so as to charge
down upon them at dawn. Colonel Gledstanes
was to occupy the head of Grand Roy Valley
and from thence assail the post on Morne
Fedon concurrently with the Count. Both were
successful, particularly the latter, whose troops
were well accustomed to mountain and forest
warfare. At nightfall on the 18th they lighted
their camp fires as usual, to delude the enemy
with the idea that they were bivouacked there,
then silently proceeded to pick their way to the
top of the Morne, where at daylight next morn-
ing the astounded rebels beheld them in pos-
session of the post there, which they had called
the Vigie, and, losing confidence, offered but
little resistance. The other assaults were equally
successful, and the British loss was only nine
killed, and fifty-five wounded. No quarter was
given to the rebels on Mount Fedon, as the
soldiers were infuriated by a last act of wanton
barbarity on their part, twenty white prisoners
who were in their hands being led -out and
brutally murdered before the eyes of the
Nearly all of the leading men concerned in
the rising fell into the hands of the victors
either immediately or shortly after, the only
notable exception being Fidon himself, who,
after hiding for some time in the woods, was
completely lost sight of; and nothing certain is
known of his fate, although it is conjectured
that he was drowned while seeking to escape to
Trinidad in a small canoe.
A special Court of Oyer and Terminer was at
once appointed to try the rebels, who, it should
be mentioned, came within the purview of an
Act passed in 1795 attainting them of high
treason, and confiscating their lands. Forty-
seven of them were convicted by this court on
the afternoon of June 30, and sentenced to
death on the following morning, the court not
allowing them to plead anything in their
defence, but convicting them upon proof of
identity, and telling them any such representa-
tions should be addressed to the Crown. Lieu-
tenant-Governor Houston was, however, equal
to the occasion, and respited all but fourteen of
the ringleaders, on whom the death sentence
was accordingly carried out promptly. This
action of the Lieutenant-Governor subjected
him to severe and hostile criticism locally,
where the feeling against the insurgents was
naturally very bitter, but it met with the warm
approval of the British Government. Eventual-
ly, however, Mr. Houston appears to have
yielded somewhat to local pressure, and alto-
gether thirty-eight of the rebels were executed,
among them being Baptiste, Mr. Home's
murderer; but he saved a considerable number,
who, with numbers of the slaves who had been
in rebellion, were deported to Honduras.
These extreme measures entirely destroyed
the French power in the colony, for their
leading men were either killed or banished, and
their property consficated. It is gratifying to
record that the Legislature so far blended
justice with mercy as to make a grant to some
of the families of those who suffered the
extreme penalty of the law in consequence of
their treason. Another fact that it is pleasant to
note is that the slaves in Carriacou were faithful
and well-behaved during the rebellion, and this,
too, although there was no garrison there, and
they outnumbered their masters by at least
forty to one.
The island now began to recover from its
ruined condition, and it is wonderful to note
how much recuperative energy was embodied in
the long-suffering and sorely tried colonists of
those days. Every building had to be rebuilt and
every field to be recultivated before one penny
of income could be realized by the planters; but
they faced their difficulties manfully, and
gradually the colony arose from its ashes to be
even more prosperous than before the crushing
blow had descended upon it.
Part II World War I
War Period 1914-1919
News of the outbreak of the great war in
which the Empire was engaged from August 4,
1914, was signalised in Grenada by expressions
of the loyalty of the people of the colony.
Addresses of loyalty were passed by the Legis-
lative Council and by all the District Boards of
the colony. A vote of 10,000 was passed by
the Legislative Council on September 11, of
which 6,000 was for the purchase of Grenada
cocoa for the use of His Majesty's Naval and
Military Forces, and 4,000 as a contribution to
the Prince of Wales' National Relief Fund.
For some months the activities of the
German cruisers in the South Atlantic and
neighboring waters kept the inhabitants in a
state of suspense, which was terminated by the
destruction of the German squadron off the
Falkland Islands in December, 1914. Souvenirs
of the 'Karlsruhe,' consisting of one of her life-
buoys, and stores bearing names of German
manufacturers, were picked up on the northern
shores of the colony, and other wreckage was
found in the Grenadines, giving rise to the
suspicion of the foundering or destruction at
sea of that vessel, whose fate for long remained
The interruption of steamer services, and dis-
turbance of financial exchanges arising from the
outbreak of hostilities, at first somewhat
seriously affected the colony, which to a very
large extent is dependent on foreign countries
for its principal food supplies. The Government
took early measures, and, by a direct importa-
tion of foodstuffs from Canada, in which
country the Royal Bank of Canada were able to
open up an immediate credit on behalf of the
Government, any danger from shortage of
supplies was quickly averted.
Mr. W. Douglas Young left the Colony to-
wards the end of 1914 to take up his appoint-
ment as Governor of the Falkland Islands, and
Mr. G.B. Haddon-Smith, C.M.G., who had been
appointed Governor of the Windward Islands in
succession to Sir James Hayes-Sadler, arrived in
Grenada on December 29, 1914. On January 1,
1915, he was created K.C.M.G.
During the first year of the war a number of
young men left the colony for the purpose of
enlisting in the United Kingdom, and early in
1915 a desire was expressed that the people of
the colony should be allowed to do their part in
assisting the Empire. As the result of represent-
ations to the Secretary of State for the Colonies
by the Governor, sanction was obtained for the
formation of a contingent to form part of "The
British West Indies Regiment." In response to
an invitation to enlist for service, 245 names
were registered within a month. The first con-
tingent, numbering 150 men, embarked on
September 19, 1915. Other contingents
followed, 446 men in all voluntarily leaving
their homes for service with the Imperial
By a resolution of Legislative Council passed
on August 9, 1916, the colony accepted
liability for allowances, pensions and gratuities
in respect of recruits sent from the colony, up
to a maximum charge of 2,700 annually. The
maintenance of the drafts while in the colony,
and the cost of transport to their destination,
were also defrayed by the local Government.
The latter expenses amounted approximately in
1915-16 to 5,500 and in 1916-17 to 11,000.
In August, 1917, a Military Service Ordi-
nance was passed, imposing liability for service
within or without the colony for the period of
the war on all men of military age, but the
Ordinance was not put into operation.
The ladies of the colony devoted themselves
to the supplying of articles for the use of the
soldiers, and as the result of individual efforts
and by organisation considerable quantities for
these articles were despatched from Grenada.
The particulars of the assistance rendered by
the colony in men and money may be sum-
marised as follows:
PARTICULARS OF CONTINGENTS
150 men strong; embarked
September 19, 1915
52 men strong; embarked
November 14, 1915
70 men strong; embarked
March 29, 1917
88 men strong; embarked
March 29, 1917
52 men strong; embarked
July 10, 1917
34 men strong; embarked
December 8, 1917
CONTRIBUTIONS FROM GENERAL
1914-15 Contribution to Prince of
Wales' National Relief
Gift to Imperial Forces
for purchase of cocoa. 6,000
1915-17 Maintenance of contingents
and transport to destina-
Liability for allowances and
pensions, annually up to 2,700
Prince of Wales' Fund
31.7.15 120 1,250
Belgian Relief Fund
31. 1. 17 10 139
West Indian Contingent Fund
Red Cross Society
30.6.18 2,000 6,070
Thi notification of the Armistice on
November 11, 1918, was received in the colony
with feelings of thankfulness that the end of
danger and suffering was in sight. Public rejoic-
ings took place, and the enthusiasm was sponta-
neous and genuine, there being a sense of pride
that the colony had in its small way contri-
buted to the enemy's downfall.
The official peace celebrations were carried
through in July 1919, separate public holidays
being appointed for the several districts, in
order to allow the attendance of the public at
the various functions. The Grenada contingents
of the British West Indies Regiment returned to
the colony during the year, with the fortunate
record of no casualties except from disease. The
men were well looked after by the Returned
Soldiers' Committee, and liberal grants and
allowances, including refunds of voluntary
allotments, were paid to them from the
colony's funds. Pensions and gratuities in
respect of disabled men were given at liberal
rates, comparing favourably with those in force
in the neighboring West Indian colonies.
Although the local contingents of the British
West Indies Regiment were fortunate in
suffering no direct war casualties, many distin-
guished families residing in or connected with
Grenada mourned the loss of members who had
served in various other regiments. Among the
fallen were the elder son of the Governor, Sir
George B. Haddon-Smith, two sons of the late,
Governor, Sir James Hayes-Sadler, Captain C.E.
Strachan, Staff Officer of the Windward Islands
during 1910-12, Captain E. Henderson, Staff
Officer during 1912-14, Captain Ness, Aide-de-
Camp to Sir James Hayes-Sadler, Major E.B.
Amphlett, Magistrate of the Eastern District,
Lieutenant Montagu Seton-Brown, elder son of
the Honourable G.S. Seton-Brown, Gordon
Sharpe, second son of Mr. H.W. Sharpe,
Assistant Treasurer, Captain Dick Bertrand,
M.C., of St. George's and Gerald Ferguson, son
of the Honourable Ruggles L. Ferguson.
Others who had served in the war and
returned safely to the colony included Lieuten-
ant Ernest Harford, of the Royal Garrison
Artillery, Captain Golding, M.C., Royal Field
Artillery, Lieutenant Maurice Sharpe, D.F.C.,
R.A.F., Lieutenant Ralph Alexander, Lieuten-
ant Walter Degale and Trooper Walter Bertrand
of King Edward's Horses.
The honours gained by members of the
British West Indies Regiment were the
Distinguished Conduct Medal Sergeant
Meritorious Service Medal Company-
Sergeant-Major Terence B. Comissiong.
Royal Humane Society's Bronze Medal and
Certificate Sergeant L.O. Taylor.
Although during the war the main activities
of the colony were concerned with drafting
contingents and raising war funds, other
interests were not neglected. Much progress was
made in educational and medical affairs. In
1916 the Grenada Scholarship was established,
of the value of 1751. (later increased to 2101.)
per annum, tenable for five years at any
university or college in Europe or Canada. The
scholarship is awarded on the results of the
Cambridge Senior Local Examination to the
best competitor provided he has reached the
standard of honours. Amendments of the
Primary Education Ordinance were passed with
the object of improving the standard of
The campaign against ankylostomiasis,
which was commenced in 1914, continued until
November, 1916, when the contemplated
entrance of the United States into ihe war led
to a cessation of the work through lack of
medical officers. The disease is prevalent
throughout the colony, and great difficulty in
the war of prevention of the spread of the
disease and in improvement of general sanita-
tion arose from the lack of domestic latrine
accommodation of the poorer classes. Steps to
deal with the problem were taken, and to
permit of operations being resumed by the
International Health Board the Government
undertook to bring the areas to be operated on
to a sufficient standard of sanitary efficiency.
Two special campaigns, against venereal
diseases and yaws respectively, were also
initiated during the war period. The campaign
against yaws had almost phenomenal results,
exceeding the most optimistic anticipations.
Under the present Colonial Surgeon, Dr. G.W.
Paterson, who succeeded Dr. Hatton in 1917,
extensive and sustained efforts to eradicate this
loathsome disease were vigorously prosecuted.
Government dispensaries were established in
each parish, and a motor ambulance for the
Colony Hospital was purchased in 1919.
The Grenada Chronicle, which had been in
circulation since 1784, and the oldest news-
paper in the Western Hemisphere and the
second oldest in the English speaking world,
ceased publication in 1915. The same year
witnessed the start of a new newspaper, The
1. Not the present town it was on the next
bay to the south.
2. Described on the map of the period of
3. This officer was the second In command on
H.M.S. 'Blanche' In her famous engagement
with the French frigate 'La Pique.'
4. Besides this the House of Commons on June
11 granted 1,500,0001, to the merchants
concerned in the trade to Grenada and St.
5. They had also three posts at Gouyave under
the command of Captain Jossey: one at
Mabouya, one on Gouyave Hill, and a third
at a place then called Dallncourt.
6. Its motto Is 'Clarior e tenebrls.'
BIBLIOGRAPHY ON GRENADA -
WORKS OF SOCIOLOGICAL INTEREST
1. Alexis, Lionel Agricola Port of Spain, 1956.
2. Auchinleck, Gilbert, G.W. Smith and W. Bertrand Government Scheme of
Land Settlement in Grenada and the Grenadines" West Indian Bulletin
Vol. 14, No. 1, 1914.
3. Bell, Hesketh J. Obeah, -Witchcraft in the West Indies, 1889. Reprinted by
Negro University Press, Connecticut 1970.
4. Bullen, Ripley P. "Archeological Research at Grenada, W.I." In Yearbook of
the American Philosophical Society. Philadelphia 1964.
5. Archeology of Grenada, W.I. Gainsville. University of Florida
(Contributions of the Florida State Museum) Social Sciences No. 11,
6. Coard, F.M. Bittersweet and Spice Arthur H. Stockwell Ltd. Devon 1970.
7. Devas, Raymund P. "The Roman Catholic Church in Grenada, B.W.I."
(1650-1927) Irish Ecclesiastical Record 5th Series. May and July, 1927.
8. History of the Island of Grenada, 1964.
9. Emmanuel, P.A.M. Crown Colony politics in Grenada 1917-1951. M.Sc.
Thesis, U.W.I. 1967.
10. Gittens-Knight, E. (compiler) The Grenada Handbook and Directory 1946
11. Government Printer (Publ.) A proposed Federation of the eight units -
Barbados, St. Vincent, Grenada, St. Lucia, St. Kitts, Nevis & Anguilla,
Montserrat and Antigua.
12. Harbin, John "Agriculture in the elementary schools of Grenada and St.
Vincent. 1902-4." West India Bulletin Vol. 6, No. 2, 1905.
13. Harewood, Jack "Population Growth in Grenada" in the Twentieth Century"
SES Vol. 15, No. 2.
14. Hughes, Alistair "Non-standard English of Grenada." CQ Vol. 12, No. 4.
15. Kay, Frances This is Grenada, Caribbean Printers, 1967.
16. Kempton, James H. "Nutmeg East Indian Settlers in the West" Foreign
Agriculture, Vol XV, No. 4, April 1951.
17. McWhinnie, Harold J. "Teaching Art in Grenada" Oversea Education, Vol. 34,
No. 3, October 1962.
18. Mischel Francis "Faith Healing and Medical Practice in the Southern
Caribbean" South Western Journal of Anthropology Vol. 15, No. 4,
19. Parker, John A Church in the Sun. Cargate Press. London 1959.
20. Rottenburg, Simon "Labour Relations in an underdeveloped economy"
Economic Development and Cultural Change (Chicago) Vol. 4, December
21. Shepherd, C.Y. Peasant Agriculture in the Leeward and Windward Islands.
I.C.T.A. Trinidad 1945.
22. Singham, Archie "Three Cases of cuckoo Politics Ceylon, British Guiana
and Grenada." New World Quarterly Vol. 2, No. 1, Dead Season 1965.
23. The Hero and the Crowd in a Colonial Polity Yale University
Press, New Haven and London. 1968.
24. Smith, Michael G. "Structure and Crisis in Grenada 1946-1954" In The Plural
Society in the British West Indies. University of California Press. Berkeley
and Los Angeles 1965.
25. Stratification in Grenada. University of California Press. Berkeley
and Los Angeles 1965.
26. The Dark Puritan, U.W.I., Department of Extra Mural Studies,
27. West Indian Family Structure. Seattle. University of Washington
28. Southwell, Garth S. "Socio-Economic Factors Affecting Extension Education
Among Farmers in Grenada, W.I." Unpublished M.Sc. Thesis, University of
Reading. August 1971.
29. Tang Kai, Sister Gertrude Education for Society in Grenada. Oxford Institute
of Ed. Overseas Secondary Headteachers' Course 1968.
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