Gems from the Archives – 38 Before National Bank

Taken some time in the 1980’s this image highlights the changing face of Basseterre.  The white house has been replaced by the main building of St. Kitts-Nevis-Anguilla National Bank. The brown building, formerly the home of Sir Maurice Davis, is now the bank’s parking lot.  The difference between what is there now and the old wooden houses is stark. All around the square there have been dramatic changes. Most of Basseterre was burnt to the ground in 1867 […]

Gems from the Archives – 36 southwell leads independence talks

It’s the first week of September and the beginning of our Independence Anniversary Celebrations.  In 1976 Deputy Premier C A Paul Southwell lead a delegation to London for the start of discussions on the independence for St. Kitts, Nevis and Anguilla though it had been ten years since Anguilla had opted for a different path for itself. Our image shows the Deputy Premier  and Minister St. John Payne ready for travel  while Goldwyn Caines interviewed Premier Bradshaw who was […]

Gems from the Archives – 35 Kittitians in Liverpool

The Second World War and the post-war recovery in Europe, encouraged by American investment,  made that continent an attractive place for migration from  the West Indies. In Britain, the need for men in the armed forces and  the Merchant Navy quickly caused serious labour shortages. Women, young people and Irish workers were the first recruits to fill the gaps left by the men who went to war.   But this was not enough.  Workers from the colonies were therefore recruited […]

Gems from the Archives – 34 St Kitts cricket team

We are sharing our archival gem, this week to honor past cricketers and to improve the listings of our holdings.   Our photograph is probably the oldest cricket photo in our collection that is in analog format rather than digital.  Because Administrator Howard is seated in the front row, we know that this had to have been taken between 1956 and 1966.  We recognize Captain McMahon holding the shield and St. Clair Phillip and Leroy Coury in the back row.  We are […]

Gems from the Archives – 33 Rawlins List 1817

Many have asked us if there is any documentation regarding where the enslaved of St. Kitts came from.    To answer that question, we are sharing the return of slaves made by James Blair on behalf of Sarah Rawlins, widow of John Rawlins.  This is entered in the first register of Slaves created in 1817.  (5 scanned pages and an excel document transcribing the return) In total Rawlins claimed ownership over 177 enslaved workers.  While the majority had been […]