Jamaican History

Jamaica: Kingston

Historical Events

Voyage of Discovery

1494-05-05 On 2nd voyage to New World Christopher Columbus sights Jamaica, landing at Discovery Bay

Pirate Attack

1720-11-15 Pirates Anne Bonny, Mary Read, and John Rackham are captured by Capt. Jonathan Barnet and brought to Spanish Town, Jamaica, for trial

Historic Event

1720-11-28 Anne Bonny and Mary Read are tried, found guilty of pirating, and sentenced to death in Spanish Town, Jamaica, although their discovered pregnancies win them stays of execution

  • 1865-10-11 Paul Bogle led hundreds of black men and women in a march in Jamaica, starting the Morant Bay rebellion.
  • 1903-04-27 Long Island's Jamaica Race Track opens
  • 1907-01-14 An earthquake in Kingston, Jamaica, kills more than 1,000
  • 1911-04-05 MCC tour match v Jamaica finishes in a tie
  • 1911-08-02 Haiti's dictator Simon flees on US warship near Jamaica
  • 1951-08-17 Hurricane winds drive 6 ships ashore, Kingston, Jamaica
  • 1957-10-31 Yip Harburg, Fred Saidy, and Harold Arlen's musical "Jamaica", starring Lena Horne, opens at Imperial Theater, NYC; runs for 558 performances
  • 1959-04-11 Yip Harburg, Fred Saidy, and Harold Arlen's musical "Jamaica", starring Lena Horne, closes at Imperial Theater, NYC, after 558 performances
  • 1959-07-04 Cayman Islands separated from Jamaica, made a crown colony
  • 1962-02-09 Jamaica signs agreement to become independent
  • 1962-03-01 American Airlines 707 plunges nose first into Jamaica Bay, NY, killing 95
  • 1962-08-06 Jamaica becomes independent after 300 years of British rule
  • 1962-09-18 Rwanda, Burundi, Jamaica & Trinidad admitted (105th-108th) to UN

Historic Event

1966-04-21 Ethiopian Emperor Haile Selassie visits Kingston, Jamaica

  • 1966-08-04 8th British Empire Games & Commonwealth Games open in Kingston, Jamaica; first Games held outside 'White Dominions'

Assassination Attempt

1967-12-03 Assassination attempt made on Bob Marley and others during concert rehearsals in Jamaica

  • 1976-12-15 Jamaica premier Manley wins elections
  • 1978-12-17 The Workers' Party of Jamaica is founded by Trevor Munroe.
  • 1980-05-20 Fire in nursing home in Kingston Jamaica, kills 157
  • 1981-05-21 Reggae musician Bob Marley receives a Jamaican state funeral

Sports History

1982-03-12 1st-class debut of Courtney Walsh, Jamaica v Leeward Islands

  • 1982-12-29 Jamaican Post issues commemorative postage stamp featuring reggae singer Bob Marley
  • 1985-02-08 1st-class cricket debut of Jimmy Adams (age 17), Jamaica v Barbados
  • 1988-09-10 -18] Hurricane Gilbert, kills 300 in Jamaica, Texas & Yucatan
  • 1988-09-12 Gilbert, strongest hurricane ever (160 mph), devastates Jamaica
  • 1988-10-16 "Smile Jamaica" concert for Hurricane Gilbert victims held in London
  • 1989-02-09 Michael Manley's Socialist Party wins Jamaica parliamentary election
  • 1989-02-10 Tony Robinson of Jamaica becomes Nottingham's 1st black sheriff
  • 1992-03-30 P J Patterson, resigns as 6th Prime Minister of Jamaica
  • 1993-03-30 Jamaican premier Percival Patterson wins parliamentary election
  • 1993-11-27 Lisa Hanna, 18, of Jamaica, crowned 43rd Miss World
  • 1996-01-27 Shiv Chanderpaul scores 303* for Guyana v Jamaica at Kingston
  • 1996-12-23 Four women ordained priests in Jamaica, 1st in 330-year Anglican history
  • 1997-02-27 British singer Sade arrested in Jamaica for disobeying a police officer
  • 1997-06-25 Jamaica issues warrant for singer Sade, who fails to report to court on charges of failure to obey a cop who signaled her to stop
  • 2005-06-14 Asafa Powell of Jamaica sets a new Men's 100 meters world record of 9.77 at the Athens Olympic Stadium
  • 2012-10-24 Hurricane Sandy makes landfall in Jamaica killing 1 person and causing over $50 million in damage
  • 2014-11-18 Jamaica win the 2014 Caribbean Cup in football

Sports History

2015-08-27 15th Athletics World Championships: Usain Bolt of Jamaica adds the men's 200m gold to his 100m win

  • 2016-01-23 Zika virus outbreak in Brazil prompts Colombia, Ecuador, El Salvador and Jamaica to recommend women delay pregnancies for up to 2 years

Famous Birthdays

Stamford RafflesStamford Raffles (1781-1826)

1781-07-06 British statesman and founder of Singapore, born in off the coast of Port Morant, Jamaica

  • 1811-07-20 James Bruce, 8th Earl of Elgin & Kincardine and Governor (Jamaica), born in London (d. 1863)
  • 1815-08-05 Edward John Eyre, British explorer and Governor of Jamaica, born in Whipsnade, England (d. 1901)
  • 1890-06-09 Leslie Banks, English actor and director (Jamaica Inn, 48 Hours), born in Liverpool, England (d. 1952)
  • 1890-09-15 Claude McKaye, Jamaican-American author (Songs of Jamaica, Banjo), born in Clarendon Parish, Jamaica (d. 1948)
  • 1893-09-18 Arthur Benjamin, Australian composer (Jamaican Rumba), born in Sydney, New South Wales (d. 1960)
  • 1900-03-01 Edna Swithenbank Manley, Jamaican sculptor, wife of PM
  • 1901-08-04 Clarence Passailaigue, Jamaican cricketer (487 for 6th wkt for Jamaica), born in Kingston, Jamaica (d. 1972)
  • 1909-06-20 Robert Marley, Jamaican cricketer (Jamaican batsman 1928-1946, WICBC pres), born in Half Way Tree, Kingston, Jamaica (d. 1995)
  • 1909-09-25 Florizel Glasspole, 3rd Governor-General of Jamaica (1973-91), born in Kingston, Jamaica (d. 2000)
  • 1914-07-24 Frank Silvera, Jamaican-American actor (High Chaparral, Killer's Kiss, Fear and Desire), born in Kingston, Jamaica (d. 1970)
  • 1915-11-13 Howard Cooke, Governor-General of Jamaica (1991-2006), born in Goodwill, St. James, Jamaica (d. 2014)
  • 1920-03-25 Arthur Wint, Jamaican runner (d. 1992)
  • 1922-07-10 Herb McKenley, Jamaican athlete (Olympic gold 4 x 400m relay 1952; 3 x silver 1948, 52), born in Pleasant Valley, Clarendon, Jamaica (d. 2007)
  • 1923-03-27 Louis Simpson, Jamaican-American poet (Good News of Death), born in Kingston, Jamaica (d. 2012)
  • 1925-02-19 Leslie Laing, Jamaican athlete (Olympic gold men's 4x400m relay 1952 WR 3:03.9), born in Linstead, Saint Catherine, Jamaica (d. 2021)
  • 1926-12-13 George Rhoden, Jamaican athlete (Olympic gold 400m, 4 x 400m relay 1952), born in Kingston, Jamaica
  • 1927-04-22 (Lorenzo) "Laurel" Aitken, Cuban-Jamaican singer and one of the pioneers of Caribbean pop and ska music, born in Havana, Cuba (d. 2005)
  • 1928-08-16 Eddie Kirkland, Jamaican-American blues guitarist, singer and harmonica player (Have Mercy On Me), born in Kingston, Jamaica (d. 2011)
  • 1928-12-10 Barbara Nichols, American actress (Dear Heart, Disorderly Orderly), born in Queens, New York (d. 1976)
  • 1929-06-09 Keith Gardner, Jamaican athlete (Olympic bronze 1960)
  • 1929-08-06 Mike Elliott, British-Jamaican ska-pop-rock saxophonist (The Foundations - "Now That I've Found You"), born in Jamaica, British West Indies
  • 1930-04-29 Alf Valentine, Jamaican cricketer (great West Indian lefty spinner)
  • 1930-05-28 Edward Seaga, PM (Jamaica)
  • 1932-01-26 Clement "Sir Coxsone" Dodd, Jamaican record producer, born in Kingston, Jamaica (d. 2004)
  • 1933-02-27 Edward Lucie-Smith, British poet and poetry critic, born in Kingston, Jamaica
  • 1934-11-12 Ann Flood, American actress (Edge of Night), born in Queens, New York
  • 1936-03-20 Lee "Scratch" Perry [Rainford Hugh Perry], Jamaican reggae singer-songwriter and producer (The Upsetters), born in Kendal, Jamaica (d. 2021)
  • 1938-04-28 Madge Sinclair (née Walters), Jamaican-American actress (Conrack; Roots - "Bell"; Trapper John, M.D. - "Ernestine"; The Lion King), born in Kingston, Colony of Jamaica (d. 1995)
  • 1938-05-28 Prince Buster [Cecil Bustamente Campbell], Jamaican-born reggae musician and producer (Madness), born in Kingston, Jamaica (d. 2016)
  • 1942-07-16 Desmond Dekker, Jamaican reggae pioneer (Aces - "Israelites"), born in Saint Andrew Parish, Jamaica (d. 2006)
  • 1943-11-12 Errol Brown, British-Jamaican singer-songwriter (Hot Chocolate - "You Sexy Thing"), born in Kingston, Jamaica (d. 2015)
  • 1944-01-29 Patrick Lipton Robinson, Jamaican judge
  • 1944-10-19 Peter Tosh [Winston Hubert McIntosh], Jamaican reggae musician (The Wailers -"Get Up Stand Up"; Mystic Man, Legalize It), born in Westmoreland, Jamaica (d. 1987)

Bob MarleyBob Marley (1945-1981)

1945-02-06 Jamaican reggae musician ("Exodus"; "One Love"; "No Woman No Cry"; "Three Little Birds"), born in Nine Mile, Saint Ann, Jamaica

  • 1946-08-29 Bob Beamon, American track and field long jumper (Olympic gold 1968, 29' 2½" 8.9m), born in South Jamaica, Queens, New York
  • 1946-10-06 Millie Small, Jamaican ska singer, and songwriter ("My Boy Lollipop"), born in Clarendon, Jamaica (d. 2020)
  • 1946-11-22 Aston Barrett, Jamaican reggae bassist (I Shot the Sheriff)
  • 1947-04-10 Bunny Wailer [Neville O'Riley Livingston], Jamaican vocalist and percussionist (The Wailers with Bob Marley), born in Kingston, Jamaica (d. 2021)
  • 1947-12-05 Bruce Golding, Jamaican politician (8th Prime Minister of Jamaica 2007-11), born in Chapelton, Jamaica
  • 1948-03-01 Burning Spear [Winston Rodney], Jamaican reggae singer
  • 1949-05-25 Jamaica Kincaid [Elaine Cynthia Potter Richardsonn], Antiguan-American journalist (NYer), born in St. John's, Antigua and Barbuda
  • 1949-06-18 "Prince" Lincoln Thompson, Jamaican reggae singer-songwriter ("Humanity"; "Daughters Of Zion"), born in Kingston, Jamaica (d. 1999)
  • 1949-10-06 Bobby Farrell, Aruban disco vocalist (Boney M), born in San Nicolaas, Aruba (d. 2010)
  • 1950-06-24 Derrick "Duckie" Simpson, Jamaican rocker (Black Uhuru), born in Kingston, Jamaica
  • 1950-12-17 Carlton "Carly" Barrett, Jamaican reggae drummer (The Upsetters; Bob Marley & Wailers), born in Kingston, Jamaica (d. 1987)
  • 1951-02-25 Don Quarrie, Jamaican runner
  • 1951-10-14 Marcia Barrett, Jamaican-British rock vocalist (Boney M), born in Saint Catherine Parish, Jamaica
  • 1952-05-10 Sly Dunbar, Jamaican reggae drummer (Sly & Robbie), born in Kingston, Jamaica
  • 1952-07-12 Liz Mitchell, Jamaican-British rock vocalist (Boney M), born in Clarendon, Jamaica
  • 1953-06-21 Augustus Pablo, Jamaican musician (King Tubbys Meets Rockers Uptown), born in St. Andrew, Jamaica (d. 1999)
  • 1953-09-27 Robbie Shakespeare, Jamaican reggae bassist (Sly & Robbie - "DJ Riot"), born in Kingston, Jamaica (d. 2021)
  • 1953-10-05 Sandra "Puma" Jones, American reggae singer (Black Uhuru, 1979-86), born in Columbia, South Carolina (d. 1990)

Trevor BerbickTrevor Berbick (1954-2006)

1954-08-01 Jamaican boxer (WBC heavyweight champion 1986), born in Norwich, Port Antonio, Jamaica

  • 1956-03-14 Tessa Sanderson, British javelin thrower (Olympic gold. 1984), born in Kingston, Jamaica
  • 1956-05-25 Lincoln Barrington "Sugar" Minott, Jamaican singer (The African Brothers), born in Kingston, Jamaica (d. 2010)
  • 1956-08-08 David Grant, British pop-soul singer ("Stop & Go"; "Could It Be I'm Falling in Love"), and televeion personality (Pop Idol), born in Hackney, London, England
  • 1957-07-11 Michael Rose, Jamaican Grammy award-winning reggae singer (Black Uhuru, 1977-84 - Anthem), born in Kingston, Jamaica
  • 1958-09-28 Angella Issajenko, Jamaica, 4X100m relayer (Olympic silver 1984)
  • 1959-02-03 Molly Killingbeck, Jamaica, 4X400m relayer (Olympic silver 1984)
  • 1959-11-16 Bert Cameron, Spanish Town Jamaica, 4X400m relayer (Olympic silver 1988)
  • 1960-04-02 Linford Christie, British athlete (Olympic gold men's 100m 1992), born in Saint Andrew, Jamaica
  • 1960-05-10 Merlene Ottey, Jamaican/Italian running star (Olympics)
  • 1961-04-26 Al Lawrence, Jamaican 4X100m relayer (Olympic silver 1984), born in Jamaica
  • 1961-06-10 Maxi Priest [Max Elliott], Jamaican-English singer (Wild World), born in London, England
  • 1961-06-14 Grace Jackson, Jamaican 200m runner (Olympic silver 1988), born in St. Ann, Jamaica
  • 1961-12-30 Ben Johnson, Canadian athlete (Olympic 100m gold 1988-disqualified), born in Falmouth, Jamaica

Patrick EwingPatrick Ewing (60 years old)

1962-08-05 Jamaican-American NBA center, 1985-2002, 11X All-Star (NY Knicks, and 2 other teams; Olympic gold 1992), and collegiate coach (Georgetown, 2017-present), born in Kingston, Jamaica

  • 1962-08-18 Sandra Farmer-Patrick, Jamaican-born American 400m hurdler, born in Kingston, Jamaica
  • 1963-02-22 Devon Malcolm, Jamaican cricketer (in Jamaica England fast bowler 1989-95), born in Kingston, Jamaica
  • 1963-10-13 Colin Channer, Jamaican writer (often referred as "Bob Marley" with a pen), born in Kingston, Jamaica
  • 1964-04-30 Barrington Levy, Jamaican reggae and dancehall singer ("Englishman"), born in Clarendon, Jamaica
  • 1965-11-17 Winthrop Graham, Jamaica, 4x400m runner (Olympic silver 1988)
  • 1965-12-05 Wayne Smith, Jamaican reggae musician (Under Mi Sleng Teng), born in Kingston, Jamaica
  • 1966-01-17 Shabba Ranks [Rexton Gordon], Jamaican dancehall musician & reggae deejay (X-tra Naked), born in St. Ann, Jamaica
  • 1966-04-02 Garnett Silk [Garnet Smith], Jamaican reggae singer and songwriter (Hey Mama Africa; Greenline), born in Manchester, Jamaica (d. 1994)
  • 1966-10-19 Roger R. Cross, Jamaican-born actor
  • 1967-05-24 Heavy D [Dwight Errington Myers], Jamaican-American rapper, born in Mandeville, Manchester, Jamaica (d. 2011)
  • 1967-12-16 Donovan Bailey, Canadian athlete (WR 100m 9.84 1996; Olympic gold 100m, 4x100m 1996; World C'ship gold 100m, 4x100m 1995, 4x100m 1997), born in Manchester Parish, Jamaica
  • 1968-01-02 Evan Parke, Jamaican actor
  • 1968-01-09 Katie Anderson, Canadian 100m hurdler (Olympic 7th-92, 96), born in Kingston, Jamaica
  • 1968-06-16 Nehemiah Perry, Jamaican cricketer (fine Jamaican off-spinner for the West Indies), bornin Kingston, Jamaica

ShaggyShaggy (54 years old)

1968-10-22 Jamaican-American Grammy Award-winning reggae rapper and songwriter ("It Wasn't Me", "Boombastic",), born in Kingston, Jamaica

  • 1969-01-02 Glen Johnson, Jamaican boxer (IBF, IBO and Ring magazine light heavyweight titles 2004-05), born in Clarendon Parish, Jamaica
  • 1970-11-08 Diana King, Jamaican singer and songwriter ("Shy Guy", "I Say a Little Prayer" remake), born in St. Catherine, Jamaica
  • 1971-12-03 Frank Sinclair, Jamaican soccer defender (28 caps; Chelsea, Leicester City), born in Lambeth, England
  • 1972-04-20 Stephen Marley, Jamaican-American reggae musician, son of Bob Marley, born in Wilmington, Delaware
  • 1972-06-12 Bounty Killer [Rodney Basil Price], Jamaican deejay, born in Trench Town, Kingston, Jamaica
  • 1972-07-05 Robert Esmie, Canadian 4X100m runner (Olympic gold 1996), born in Kingston, Jamaica
  • 1973-01-09 Sean Paul, Jamaican dancehall singer, born in Kingston, Jamaica
  • 1973-07-04 Michael Johnson, English-born Jamaican footballer, born in St. Louis, Missouri
  • 1976-08-21 Jeff Cunningham, Jamaican American soccer player, born in Montego Bay, Jamaica
  • 1976-09-11 Elephant Man [Oneal Bryan], Jamaican musician ("Let's Get Physical"), born in Kingston, Jamaica
  • 1977-04-17 Sizzla Kalonji [Miguel Orlando Collins], Jamaican reggae musician, born in Kingston, Jamaica
  • 1978-07-21 Damian Marley, Jamaican musician, born in Kingston, Jamaica
  • 1978-09-25 Ricardo Gardner, Jamaican footballer, born in St. Andrew Parish, Jamaica

Chris GayleChris Gayle (43 years old)

1979-09-21 Jamaican West Indies cricketer (1999-) and fastest century maker in history, born in Kingston, Jamaica

  • 1979-10-31 Ricardo Fuller, Jamaican footballer, born in Kingston, Jamaica
  • 1981-01-18 Khari Stephenson, Jamaican footballer, born in Kingston, Jamaica
  • 1981-07-11 Carla Campbell, Jamaican model

Famous Weddings

Forest Whitaker

1996-05-04 Actor-producer Forest Whitaker (35) weds actress-model Keisha Nash (23) in Montego Bay, Jamaica

Idina Menzel

2003-01-11 "How Stella Got Her Groove Back" actor Taye Diggs (32) weds broadway actress Idina Menzel (31) at Round Hill Hotel and Villas in Montego Bay, Jamaica

  • 2003-04-22 "Star Trek: Enterprise" actress Jolene Blalock (28) weds "Live Nation" CEO Michael Rapino in Negril, Jamaica
  • 2004-07-10 "The West Wing" actor Dule Hill (29) weds actress Nicole Lyn (26) in Montego Bay, Jamaica

Lennox Lewis

2005-07-15 Heavyweight boxing champion Lennox Lewis (39) weds former Miss Jamaica runner-up Violet Chang at William Knibb Memorial Baptist Church in Falmouth, Jamaica

Carlene Carter

2006-02-04 Daughter of June Carter country singer Carlene Carter (50) weds (for a fourth time) Joe Breen at Cinnamon Hill in Jamaica; divorce 2020

  • 2008-09-19 NBC's The Biggest Loser contestant Matt Hoover (30) weds Suzy Preston (30) at the Grand Lido Negril resort in Jamaica

Famous Deaths

  • 1863-11-20 James Bruce, 8th Earl of Elgin & Kincardine and Governor (Jamaica), dies at 52
  • 1901-11-30 Edward J Eyre, British explorer/governor (Jamaica), dies at 86
  • 1917-09-20 Herbert Morris, Jamaican deserter in France, executed at 17
  • 1948-05-22 Claude McKaye, Jamaican-American author (Banjo, Home to Harlem), dies at 57
  • 1967-04-11 Donald Sangster, Jamaican prime-minister (b. 1911)
  • 1970-06-11 Frank Silvera, Jamaican-American actor (High Chaparral, Killer's Kiss, Fear and Desire), accidentally electrocutes himself at 55
  • 1972-01-07 Clarence Passailaigue, Jamaican cricketer (487 for 6th wkt for Jamaica), dies at 70
  • 1987-04-17 Carlton "Carly" Barrett, Jamaican reggae drummer (The Upsetters; Bob Marley & Wailers), murdered at 36
  • 1989-04-19 Daphne Du Maurier, English writer (Rebecca, Jamaica Inn), dies at 82
  • 1995-05-13 Robert Marley, Jamaican cricketer (WICBC pres 1971-74, Jamaican capt 1946), dies at 85
  • 1997-03-06 Michael Manley, Jamaican PM (PNP, 1972-80, 89-92), dies
  • 1999-01-23 Prince Lincoln Thompson, Jamaican musician (b. 1949)
  • 1999-05-18 Augustus Pablo, Jamaican musician (King Tubbys Meets Rockers Uptown), dies at 44
  • 1999-06-02 Junior Braithwaite, Jamaican musician (The Wailers) (b. 1949)
  • 2000-10-19 Hortense Ellis, Jamaican reggae singer ("Right On the Tip of My Tongue"), dies from a stomach infection at 59
  • 2004-06-09 Brian Williamson, Jamaican Gay Activist (b. 1945)
  • 2004-07-05 Hugh Shearer, Prime Minister of Jamaica (b. 1923)
  • 2005-07-17 (Lorenzo) "Laurel" Aitken, Cuban-Jamaican singer and one of the pioneers of Caribbean pop and ska music, dies of a heart attack at 78
  • 2006-05-25 Desmond Dekker, Jamaican reggae pioneer (Aces - "Israelites"), dies at 64

Trevor BerbickTrevor Berbick (1954-2006)

2006-10-28 Jamaican boxer (WBC heavyweight champion 1986), dies from blows to the head by his nephew at 52

  • 2010-10-25 Gregory Isaacs, Jamaican reggae musician, dies of lung cancer at 59
  • 2011-11-08 Heavy D [Dwight Errington Myers], Jamaican-American rap artist, dies at 44
  • 2011-12-03 Philip Burrell, influential Jamaican record producer, dies of a heart attack at 57
  • 2012-09-14 Louis Simpson, Jamaican-American poet (Good News of Death), dies from Alzheimer's disease at 89
  • 2015-05-06 Errol Brown, British-Jamaican singer-songwriter (Hot Chocolate - "You Sexy Thing"), dies at 71