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Island People

Read about the people of, and related to, our island

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I judge people by what they might be, not are, nor will be.
Robert Browning, in ‘The Speed of Darkness’ (1968)

History, they say, is not about events; it’s about people. This is a subset of our Island Detail pages which covers items related to St Helena people.

If there is something about St Helena’s people that we have not covered please contact us and we’ll try to add it in.

Island People [Saint Helena Island Info:Island People]

If what you’re looking for isn’t in this index, please consult our Information Index page (the master index) or use the Page Search facility (below).

Below: Information IndexCommunity PagesSubject IndexBoer Prisoners (1900-1902)Characters of St HelenaExilesFamily And FriendsFamous VisitorsThe Friendly SocietiesGhost Stories of St HelenaThe Governor of St HelenaHistorians of St HelenaImportant PeopleIndustries‘Local’?Memories of St HelenaMyths Debunked!Napoleon BonaparteNapoleonic BicentenaryNicknamesSaint HelenaOur Sister IslandsSlaves and slaveryOrigins of island surnamesTitbits from the recordsZzyzx

Information Index • Start here… [Saint Helena Island Info:Island People]

Information Index

Start here…

Community Pages • It’s what’s happening… [Saint Helena Island Info:Island People]

Community Pages

It’s what’s happening…

Subject Index • These are the pages you are searching for [Saint Helena Island Info:Island People]

Subject Index

These are the pages you are searching for

Boer Prisoners (1900-1902) • Home-from-home - almost [Saint Helena Island Info:Island People]

Boer Prisoners (1900-1902)

Home-from-home - almost

Characters of St Helena • Eccentric? Colourful? Mad? Criminal? You decide… [Saint Helena Island Info:Island People]

Characters of St Helena

Eccentric? Colourful? Mad? Criminal? You decide…

Exiles • Not all our visitors wanted to be here! [Saint Helena Island Info:Island People]

Exiles

Not all our visitors wanted to be here!

Family And Friends • How to find people on St Helena [Saint Helena Island Info:Island People]

Family And Friends

How to find people on St Helena

Famous Visitors • Let’s drop a few names [Saint Helena Island Info:Island People]

Famous Visitors

Let’s drop a few names

The Friendly Societies • Lending a hand [Saint Helena Island Info:Island People]

The Friendly Societies

Lending a hand

Ghost Stories of St Helena • Don’t look round, but… [Saint Helena Island Info:Island People]

Ghost Stories of St Helena

Don’t look round, but…

The Governor of St Helena • The one at the top [Saint Helena Island Info:Island People]

The Governor of St Helena

The one at the top

Historians of St Helena • Recording our past [Saint Helena Island Info:Island People]

Historians of St Helena

Recording our past

Important People • They made their mark [Saint Helena Island Info:Island People]

Important People

They made their mark

Industries • It’s the economy, stupid [Saint Helena Island Info:Island People]

Industries

It’s the economy, stupid

‘Local’? • Isn’t that everything? [Saint Helena Island Info:Island People]

‘Local’?

Isn’t that everything?

Memories of St Helena • ‘Well, back in the day…’ [Saint Helena Island Info:Island People]

Memories of St Helena

‘Well, back in the day…’

Myths Debunked! • Everybody knows that… [Saint Helena Island Info:Island People]

Myths Debunked!

Everybody knows that…

Napoleon Bonaparte • His imprisonment, his death, and some things you maybe don’t know about him [Saint Helena Island Info:Island People]

Napoleon Bonaparte

His imprisonment, his death, and some things you maybe don’t know about him

Napoleonic Bicentenary • A reason to celebrate… [Saint Helena Island Info:Island People]

Napoleonic Bicentenary

A reason to celebrate…

Nicknames • Who on earth is ‘Gavin Ellick’? [Saint Helena Island Info:Island People]

Nicknames

Who on earth is ‘Gavin Ellick’?

Saint Helena • She gave our island her name [Saint Helena Island Info:Island People]

Saint Helena

She gave our island her name

Our Sister Islands • Part of our Territory [Saint Helena Island Info:Island People]

Our Sister Islands

Part of our Territory

Slaves and slavery • Part of what makes us what we are [Saint Helena Island Info:Island People]

Slaves and slavery

Part of what makes us what we are

Origins of island surnames • How islanders got their family names [Saint Helena Island Info:Island People]

Origins of island surnames

How islanders got their family names

Titbits from the records • To amuse and inform [Saint Helena Island Info:Island People]

Titbits from the records

To amuse and inform

Zzyzx • Anything that didn’t fit in elsewhere [Saint Helena Island Info:Island People]

Zzyzx

Anything that didn’t fit in elsewhere

 

Read More

Article: “Family life

From the 2002 Master’s thesis in Human Geography, University of Utrecht, The Netherlands, by Maarten Hogenstijn and Daniël van Middelkoop, Page 63{1}

St Helena people [Saint Helena Island Info:Island People]

The family is what holds Saint Helenian society together. Relatives help each other with odd jobs or goods all the time, and the flow of remittances is through family relations. Family is a favourite topic of conversation and an important source of identity. What family you are from determines to a large extent what place you will occupy in society. It is the first source of identification, as French consul Michel Martineau stresses: “You will hear that if you ask someone who is he or who is she, they will always classify the person by which family he or she belongs to. The first son of, you know. Or, he belongs to this branch. I mean just ask around, who is that, and they will tell family. The individual identity only comes through that. It never works from friendship. They will never tell he is a friend of.

The importance of family life is stressed in many ways. Many people spend Sundays with family. If you go out on Saint Helena, it will often be with the whole family. At Donny’s Club for example, there is always a children’s disco before the adult disco starts on Friday or Saturday nights. A ‘Family day out’ is often organised. Families go out picnicking on Horse Pasture or at Lemon Valley in weekends. As an outsider, you are very lucky to get invited to such occasions. Bishop John comments: “I am lucky, because at Christmas I get invited to family celebrations and it’s not just mother-father-children, but it is more what I would call an extended family. It’s far more close-knit here that it would be say in the UK, where the nucleus tends to be just father, mother children. Whereas here, uncles, aunts, brothers, sisters all tend to live in the same area.”A comment that is often heard informally is that “everyone is related to everyone else”. This is especially true in outlying districts like Blue Hill or Levelwood, where people tended to marry within their districts. But even in total the number of families on the island is not that great. The phone book listed 153 different family names. But six family names together accounted for a third of the total number of entries.

More stories [Saint Helena Island Info:Island People]

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Footnotes:

{1} Reproduced for educational non-commercial use only; all copyrights are acknowledged.



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