Sunday, September 2, 2007


British sailors who landed on Barbados in 1625 at the site of present-day Holetown on the Caribbean coast found the island uninhabited. From the arrival of the first British settlers in 1627–1628 until independence in 1966, Barbados was under uninterrupted British control. Nevertheless, Barbados always enjoyed a large measure of local autonomy. Its House of Assembly began meeting in 1639.
Large numbers of Scots-Irish went to Barbados as indentured servants. This group became a buffer between the Anglo-Saxon plantation owners and the larger African slave population, variously serving as members of the Colonial militia and allies of the slaves in a long string of colonial rebellions. As well, in 1659, the English shipped many Irishmen and Scots off to Barbados as slaves, and King James II and others of his dynasty also sent Scots and English off to the isle, e.g., after the crushing of the Monmouth Rebellion in 1685. The modern descendants of this Scots-Irish slave/servant population are sometimes derisively referred to as Red Legs, or locally, "ecky becky," and are some of the poorest inhabitants of modern Barbados. There has also been large-scale intermarriage between the African and Scots-Irish populations on the islands.

(Source: Wikipedia)