Gems from the Archives – 80 Curtain Call 1964 Arts Festival

In August 1964, St. Kitts had its first Arts festival. It was meant as a commemoration of the 400th anniversary of the birth of William Shakespeare. Our image today is the Curtain Call following the performance of Twelfth Night at the Factory Social Centre. It comes to us as part of a photographic collection from SSMC and we are very grateful to Mr Reginald George for keeping it safe till it was handed over to […]

Gems from the Archives – 79 Letter about Police 1868

Sometime before the 10th of October 1868, thirty Police Constables signed a petition which was submitted to the Inspector of Police. He in turn forwarded it to the Liuetenant Governor, who in the absence of the Governor, was the head of the Government in St. Kitts at the time. This petition and the accompanying letter have yet to be found. We hope that they still exist in copy form in one of the volumes of […]

Gems from the Archives – 78 Negro burying ground in Basseterre

One of the questions we are often asked is “where were the enslaved buried?” For those who lived and worked on the estates the answer is usually on the estate itself. But there were a significant number who worked in private homes in towns and villages as servants, porters, and even skilled workers whose services were available for rent by anybody willing to pay the enslaver for the privilege. There were also those who were […]

Gems from the Archives – 77 St Johnston Village

Our item for today is a blue print of a labourer’s hut designed in 1929. This was to be the beginning of what came to be called St. Johnston Village after the Administrator (later Governor) who had started the project. Compared to today’s house plans, it almost looks like the project was going to be about the building of doll’s houses. However this was actually a major improvement on the working class housing then available. […]

Gems from the Archives – 76 Register of Midwives

At the beginning of the 20th century, rudimentary health practices were having a serious effect on the survival of new born babies. St. Kitts actually had one of the highest infant mortality rates in the Caribbean, possible the world. In 1913 the Health report had to concede that this was “generally admitted to be one of the more serious blots on our records.” Nanas delivered babies at home. These women would have learnt their skill […]