Caribbean Project: SNN on Caribbean Origins of Southern Plantation System

British West Indies

Palmetto Patriot has an excellent article on this at SNN: it was pioneered by Dutch and Portuguese Jews in Brazil, who played a decisive role in bringing it to the British and French West Indies in the 1640s and 1650s.

Note: In Caribbean Project: “Beyond The Line,” I briefly discussed James Drax, the first sugar baron in Barbados, who visited Brazil in 1640 and whose successful experiment in sugarcane was the decisive moment in the creation of the first “slave society” in the English West Indies.*

Oddly enough, Drax had a Puritan background. He sided with Cromwell, Parliament, and the Roundheads in the English Civil War. The Cavaliers who later settled in Barbados snapped up lucrative plantations created by the original settlers and expelled Drax from Barbados, but were themselves defeated when a naval blockade strangled the island into submission.

* “Great Britain” did not yet exist at the time.

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  1. Drax has relatives alive today.

    MP for Devon or Cornwall. You should contact him with questions. He’s quite open about the family history. A jolly interesting Tory.

  2. Thanks, HW. And thanks for pointing out that the Act of Union (1801) had not taken place at at that time. I hadn’t thought about that but after seeing your note I made the changes in the article.

  3. The Acts of Union 1707 was with the Kingdom of England and the Kingdom of Scotland.

    The Acts of 1800 and 1801 were the same and were with the Kingdom of GB and the Kingdom of Ireland. Passed in the summer of 1800 and went into effect on 1 January 1801. Anyhow, all of this takes us away from the point of the article. But I will be more careful with this in the future.

  4. Wasn’t knocking anything.

    Kingship is Subtle. Union was personally effected with James I invited to London.

    Ireland has never settled in Henry VIII was the King of Ireland. All kings since him have taken that title up til 1921.

    But yeah you lot are Baijans! Even your blacks are Baijans by the looks of it.

  5. “Derien” or something. The colonists all died, All the investors went bust and they decided to hook up with Westminster.

    Politics in the mothercountry are important. Before Flodden for example England could not begin expansion. James acceptance in London was epoch making.

    Jamestown was effectively Scottish accountants and English adventurers.

  6. @ John It’s amazing how many times the English raided, and held Spanish cities like Cadiz in the 16th century. Including raids led by Drake on Spain proper.

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