Alison's Writing Portfolio · On Culture & Trends · On History · On Places & Travel

Jewish Barbados? Reading about Pirates, Rum and Slavery

I had a great time doing the background reading for my piece on Jewish Barbados, which is now up on the Huffington Post. Here are my suggestions to learn more.

  • For more on Jewish history in the Caribbean, check out Jewish Pirates of the Caribbean, by Edward Kritzler, (Doubleday 2008). Lately, visitors to the Nidhe Israel cemetery get excited when they see skull and crossbones iconography on several of the Jewish graves, but that was a common island gravestone motif, and the buried were not pirates.
  • For more on the history of rum, And a Bottle of Rum (Crown 2006) by Wayne Curtis provides a lively look at the elite planter’s life on the island, and the connection between sugar and rum production. He cites no less than Adam Smith, in The Wealth of Nations, who explained that rum and molasses would defray the entire cost of production of a sugar crop, making the sale of actual sugar pure sweet profit.
  • A Brief History of the Caribbean by Jan Rogonzinski (Plume 200)  hardly mentions the Jews, but does provide a sobering look at the human toll exacted on the slaves who were involved in sugar production.

If you’re looking for images, here’s the link!

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3 thoughts on “Jewish Barbados? Reading about Pirates, Rum and Slavery

  1. Just to drop a line to indicate that I have published an article on the Jews of Barbados in the local journal, the Journal of the Barbados Museum and Historical Society (J.B.M.H.S)
    Best Wishes
    Pedro Welch

  2. traced my ancestors back to a jewish man b.1647 in Barbados, Lorentz Springer. Do you have any info that may help me further my search

  3. Hi Connie,
    I would suggest that you get in touch with the Nidhe Israel Museum in Bridgetown. 246-436-6869.

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