|Capital||Villa de la Vega|
|10,991 km2 (4,244 sq mi)|
Part of a series on the
|History of Jamaica|
| Invasion of Jamaica |
1692 Jamaica earthquake
First Maroon War
Second Maroon War
Morant Bay rebellion
| Independence of Jamaica |
Jamaican political conflict
Santiago was a Spanish territory of the Spanish West Indies and within the Viceroyalty of New Spain, in the Caribbean region. Its location is the present-day island and nation of Jamaica.
Around 650 AD, Jamaica was colonized by the people of the Ostionoid culture, who likely came from South America.Alligator Pond in Manchester Parish and Little River in St. Ann Parish are among the earliest known sites of this Ostionoid people, who lived near the coast and extensively hunted turtles and fish.
Around 950 AD, the people of the Meillacan culture settled on both the coast and the interior of Jamaica, either absorbing the Ostionoid people or co-inhabiting the island with them.
The Taíno culture developed on Jamaica around 1200 AD.They brought from South America a system of raising yuca known as "conuco." To add nutrients to the soil, the Taíno burned local bushes and trees and heaped the ash into large mounds, into which they then planted yuca cuttings. Most Taíno lived in large circular buildings (bohios), constructed with wooden poles, woven straw, and palm leaves. The Taino spoke an Arawakan language and did not have writing. Some of the words used by them, such as barbacoa ("barbecue"), hamaca ("hammock"), kanoa ("canoe"), tabaco ("tobacco"), yuca , batata ("sweet potato"), and juracán ("hurricane"), have been incorporated into Spanish and English.
Christopher Columbus set sail on his second voyage to the Americas on September 24, 1493.On November 3, 1493, he landed on an island that he named Dominica. On November 22, he landed on Hispaniola and spent some time exploring the interior of the island for gold. He left Hispaniola on April 24, 1494, and arrived at the island of Juana (Cuba) on April 30 and Jamaica on May 5. He explored the south coast of Juana before returning to Hispaniola on August 20. After staying for a time on the western end, present-day Haiti, he finally returned to Spain.
Columbus returned to Jamaica during his fourth voyage to the Americas. He had been sailing around the Caribbean nearly a year when a storm beached his ships in St. Ann's Bay, Jamaica, on June 25, 1503.
For a year Columbus and his men remained stranded on Jamaica. A Spaniard, Diego Mendez, and some natives paddled a canoe to get help from Hispaniola. The island's governor, Nicolás de Ovando y Cáceres, detested Columbus and obstructed all efforts to rescue him and his men. In the meantime, Columbus allegedly mesmerized the natives by correctly predicting a lunar eclipse for February 29, 1504, using the Ephemeris of the German astronomer Regiomontanus.Help finally arrived, from the governor, on June 29, 1504, and Columbus and his men arrived in Sanlúcar de Barrameda, Castile, on November 7, 1504.
The Spanish Empire began its official governance of Jamaica in 1509. That year, Columbus's son, Diego Columbus, instructed conquistador Juan de Esquivel to formally occupy Jamaica in his name.Esquivel had accompanied Columbus in his second trip to the Americas in 1493 and participated in the invasion of Hispaniola. A decade later, Friar Bartolomé de las Casas wrote Spanish authorities about Esquivel's conduct during the Higüey massacre of 1503.
The first Spanish settlement was founded in 1509 near St Ann's Bay and named Sevilla la Nueva, or New Seville.
In 1534 the settlers moved to a new, healthier site, which they named Villa de la Vega, and later St Jago de la Vega, which the English renamed Spanish Town when they conquered the island in 1655.This settlement served as the capital of both Spanish and English Jamaica from its foundation in 1534 until 1872, after which the capital was moved to Kingston.
Other settlements established by the Spanish included Esquivel (now Old Harbour Bay, Jamaica), Oristan (Bluefields, Jamaica), Savanna-la-Mar, Manterias (Montego Bay), Las Chorreras (Ocho Rios), Oracabeza (Oracabessa), Puerto Santa Maria (Port Maria), Mellila (Annotto Bay) and Puerto Anton (Port Antonio).
In 1611, the population of Spanish Jamaica was 1,510, including 696 Spaniards, 107 free people of color, 74 Tainos, 558 black slaves, and 75 "foreigners".However, that census did not include the Taino who fled to the mountainous interior, where they mingled with freed African slaves, and became the ancestors to the Jamaican Maroons of Nanny Town.
The Spaniards enslaved many of the native people, overworking and harming them to the point that many had perished within fifty years of European arrival.Subsequently, the lack of indigenous opportunity for labour was mended with the arrival of African slaves. Disappointed in the lack of gold on the isle, the Spanish mainly used Jamaica as a military base to supply colonizing efforts in the mainland Americas.
The Spanish colonists did not bring women in the first expeditions and took Taíno women for their common-law wives, resulting in mestizo children.Sexual violence with the Taíno women by the Spanish was also common.
Although the Taino referred to the island as "Xaymaca," the Spanish gradually changed the name to "Jamaica."In the so-called Admiral's map of 1507 the island was labeled as "Jamaiqua" and in Peter Martyr's work "Decades" of 1511, he referred to it as both "Jamaica" and "Jamica."
In 1597, English privateer Anthony Shirley landed on Jamaica and plundered the island, marching on St Jago de la Vega with the help of a Taino guide, and he sacked the town.Governor Fernando Melgarejo tried to protect the island from pirate raids, and in 1603 he successfully repelled an attack by Christopher Newport.
In 1643, William Jackson (pirate) landed at Caguaya, marched on St Jago de la Vega, and plundered it.
In late 1654, English leader Oliver Cromwell launched the Western Design armada against Spain's colonies in the Caribbean. In April 1655, General Robert Venables led the armada in an attack on Spain's fort at Santo Domingo, Hispaniola. However, the Spanish repulsed this poorly-executed attack, known as the Siege of Santo Domingo, and the English troops were soon decimated by disease.
Weakened by fever and looking for an easy victory following their defeat at Santo Domingo, the English force then sailed for Jamaica, the only Spanish West Indies island that did not have new defensive works. In May 1655, around 7,000 English soldiers landed near Jamaica's Spanish Town capital. The English invasion force soon overwhelmed the small number of Spanish troops (at the time, Jamaica's entire population only numbered around 2,500).
In the following years, Spain repeatedly attempted to recapture Jamaica, and in response in 1657 the English Governor of Jamaica invited buccaneers to base themselves at Port Royal, to help defend against Spanish attacks. Spain never recaptured Jamaica, losing the Battle of Ocho Rios in 1657 and the Battle of Rio Nuevo in 1658. When the Spanish Maroon leader, Juan de Bolas, switched sides and joined the English, the Spanish acting governor Ysasi conceded defeat in his attempts to reconquer the island. For England, the Colony of Jamaica was to be the "dagger pointed at the heart of the Spanish Empire", although in fact it was a possession of little economic value then.
Hispaniola is an island in the Caribbean archipelago known as the Greater Antilles. It is the most populous island in the West Indies and the region's second largest after Cuba.
The Caribbean island of Jamaica was inhabited by the Arawak tribes prior to the arrival of Columbus in 1494. Early inhabitants of Jamaica named the land "Xaymaca", meaning "Land of wood and water ". The Spanish enslaved the Arawak, who were so ravaged by their conflict with the Europeans and by foreign diseases that nearly the entire native population was extinct by 1600. The Spanish also transported hundreds of West African people to the island.
The Arawak are a group of indigenous peoples of South America and of the Caribbean. Specifically, the term "Arawak" has been applied at various times to the Lokono of South America and the Taíno, who historically lived in the Greater Antilles and northern Lesser Antilles in the Caribbean. All these groups spoke related Arawakan languages.
The Lucayanpeople were the original inhabitants of the Bahamas before the arrival of European colonizers. They were a branch of the Tainos who inhabited most of the Caribbean islands at the time. The Lucayans were the first inhabitants of the Americas encountered by Christopher Columbus. The Spanish started seizing Lucayans as slaves within a few years of Columbus's arrival, and they had all been removed from the Bahamas by 1520.
Mona is the third-largest island of the Puerto Rican archipelago, after the main island of Puerto Rico and Vieques. It is the largest of three islands in the Mona Passage, a strait between the Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico, the others being Monito Island and Desecheo Island. It measures about 7 miles by 4 miles, and lies 41 mi (66 km) west of Puerto Rico, of which it is administratively a part. It is one of two islands that make up the Isla de Mona e Islote Monito.
Maroons are descendants of Africans in the Americas who formed settlements away from slavery.
Frey Nicolás de Ovando y Cáceres was a Spanish soldier from a noble family and a Knight of the Order of Alcántara, a military order of Spain. He was Governor of the Indies (Hispaniola) from 1502 until 1509, sent by the Spanish crown to investigate the administration of Francisco de Bobadilla and re-establish order. His administration subdued rebellious Spaniards, and completed the brutal "pacification" of the native Taíno population of Hispaniola.
Anacaona also known as Golden Flower, was a Taíno cacique (chief), religious expert and poet born in Xaragua (Haiti). Before the arrival of Christopher Columbus in 1492, Ayiti, now known as the island of Hispaniola was divided into five kingdoms. Anacaona was born into a family of chiefs, and was the sister of Bohecio, the chief of Xaragua.
Guarionex was a Taíno cacique from Maguá in the island of Hispaniola at the time of the arrival of the Europeans to the Western Hemisphere in 1492. He was the son of cacique Guacanagarix, the great Taíno prophet who had the vision of the coming of the Guamikena.
Santo Domingo, officially the Captaincy General of Santo Domingo or alternatively the Kingdom of Santo Domingo was the first colony established in the New World under Spain in 1492. The island was named "La Española" (Hispaniola) by Christopher Columbus. In 1511, the courts of the colony were placed under the jurisdiction of the Real Audiencia of Santo Domingo.
Juan de Esquivel was a Spanish officer involved with the Colon family's government of the West Indies, particularly Jamaica.
The Invasion of Jamaica took place in May 1655, during the 1654 to 1660 Anglo-Spanish War, when an English expeditionary force captured Spanish Jamaica. It was part of an ambitious plan by Oliver Cromwell to acquire new colonies in the Americas, known as the Western Design.
Taíno is an Arawakan language that was spoken by the Taíno people of the Caribbean. At the time of Spanish contact, it was the principal language throughout the Caribbean. Classic Taíno was the native language of the northern Leeward Islands, Puerto Rico, the Turks and Caicos Islands, and most of Hispaniola, and it was expanding into Cuba. The Ciboney dialect is essentially unattested, but colonial sources suggest it was very similar to Classic Taíno and was spoken in the westernmost areas of Hispaniola, the Bahamas, Jamaica, and most of Cuba.
The Taíno were an indigenous people of the Caribbean. At the time of European contact in the late fifteenth century, they were the principal inhabitants of most of Cuba, Hispaniola, Jamaica, Puerto Rico, The Bahamas and the northern Lesser Antilles. The Taíno were the first New World peoples to be encountered by Christopher Columbus during his 1492 voyage. They spoke the Taíno language, an Arawakan language.
The Colony of Jamaica gained independence from the United Kingdom on 6 August 1962. In Jamaica, this date is celebrated as Independence Day, a national holiday.
Juan de Bolas originally Juan Lubolo (??-1664) was the one of the first chiefs of the Jamaican Maroons.
The Spanish settlement in Jamaica was a settlement that originated from the 16th century, when Jamaica was Spanish, ending essentially in 1670, the date on which Spain delivered the island to the British Crown under the Treaty of Madrid. However, there were never significant Spanish communities on the island, which was why it easily occupied by the British.
Juan de Serras was one of the first Jamaican Maroon chiefs in the seventeenth century. His community was based primarily around Los Vermajales, and as a result the English called his group of Maroons the Karmahaly Maroons. It is likely that his Maroons are descended from escaped African slaves and Taino men and women.
The Yamaye people are the descendants of Arawak peoples in Jamaica. They also are typically mixed with European and sometimes, Asian ancestry. They are commonly known as Arawak. In the 1990s, people started to refer to all indigenous Jamaicans as Taíno There is a minor population of Yamaye people in Jamaica, most notably in Saint Elizabeth Parish, as well as mountainous regions throughout Jamaica and the Maroon community, Canada, and the United States. It is unknown the exact amount of Yamaye people there are. It is estimated that there are around 3,500
Caonabo was a Taíno cacique (chieftain) of Hispaniola at the time of Christopher Columbus's arrival to the island. He was known for his fighting skills and his ferocity. He was married to Anacaona, who was the sister of another cacique named Bohechío.