blank Saint Helena Island Info Saints

Saints

Maybe it’s a state of mind?

blank Saint Helena Island Info Saints

Surrounded by Saints, you’ll think you’re in Paradise
Inscription on a t-shirt

Saints are renown for their warm, friendly and welcoming attitude to visitors, but what are we like to live amongst?

This page is in indexes: Island History, Island People, Island Detail

Saints Saint Helena Island Info{a}

Below: The Legal DefinitionSaint CultureSaints OverseasWhy ‘Saints’?Where did Saints come from?Read More

Editor’s Personal Note:
This is possibly the most difficult Saint Helena Island Info page I have had to write. Everybody has their own idea of what being a Saint is all about and whatever I write someone will disagree. Then I am myself an ‘adopted Saint’ - I have neither Saint parents nor was I born here; I acquired ‘Saint Status’ in 2012 after living exclusively here since 2005, so I can really only address this topic as an outsider looking in. In particular, defining Saint Culture and what makes you culturally a Saint is somewhat harder than nailing fog to a wall, but I’ve given it a go. I hope what follows will be helpful in understanding the people of St Helena, whether they currently live here or not, and also that it won’t attract too much criticism!
If there is anything you want to add please make contact.

If you are thinking of coming here to settle, you should also read our Could you live here? page and Jobs on St Helena page.

The Legal Definition

Legal Definition Saint Helena Island Info Saints

Unsurprisingly, there is a legal definition of what makes you a Saint, though in practice it only really addresses the subject of who is legally entitled to settle and work on St Helena. It cannot and does not atempt to address the many cultural issues associated with ‘Saint-ness’.

The legislation in question is the Immigration Control Ordinance{1}. You can download this from the Government of St Helena website. In summary it says that you can hold ‘Saint Status’ if either you are ethnically a Saint, i.e. you have one or more Saint parents; you marry or become the Life Partner of a Saint; or you explicitly apply for and are granted Status (after complying with certain rules).

Anyone with Saint Status can reside here, work here without the need to apply for a work permit, and buy and sell land and property here without limits. Non-Saints are restricted in these matters - the precise restrictions vary from time to time.

But, ” you say, “you can become an American Citizen but does that make you truly an American?” and that question can only be answered by asking what makes you culturally a Saint?

Saint Culture

Do you have to enjoy Country Music? Do you have to like Plo{2}? Do you have to be a Christian? Do you have to go camping at Easter and weep uncontrollably whenever somebody plays ‘My St Helena Island’? Many of these things are typical of Saints, and so could be described as part of the culture, but they are by no means universal. So what follows{3} is an attempt to describe what being a Saint living on St Helena is about.

Peters Family Saint Helena Island Info Saints

The most important place to start is with the family, because it underpins life on St Helena. If a Saint meets another Saint for the first time (which is, of course, rare), the most important question is not where you live or what job you do, it’s “Who is you family to?”. Knowing somebody’s family allows you to fit them into the map, though it may lead you to make assumptions about them that are not true in the case of this particular individual{4}. Everything is family-based; often even Nicknames, so when ‘Lizzie Dover’ got married she became ‘Lizzie Dick’. Births, Birthdays, Weddings, Baptisms, Anniversaries and Funerals are all big family affairs and everybody attends (unless there’s a family feud in progress, of course!) A large family funeral, which almost always takes place mid-week{5}, can bring the island to a stand-still and no employer would consider refusing time off to attend a funeral{6}. Weddings can pack even the largest Churches and Castle Gardens is never busier than when it’s filled with wedding guests for the post-marriage photo shoot. Resulting from the emphasis on family, elderly care is not a problem on St Helena, with most older people remaining in their family home until physical disabilities make this impossible. After this there is sheltered accommodation or the Community Care Complex, but even there elderly people are regularly visited by family and remain part of family life. Similary it is not uncommon for a Saint child to be raised by grandparents, uncles/aunts, etc., due to both parents working overseas (where children are not permitted). Family is undoubtedly the most fundamental aspect of being a Saint. However it is worth noting that ‘family’ does not, in many cases, imply a married reltionship between the parents, or even that all the children in the group will have the same father or mother{7}. Families are strong and committed units on St Helena, but are flexibly defined.

Age too is not a big divider on St Helena. As mentioned above, the older members fully participate in family life. You will also see children playing in groups with ages ranging from 5 to 15. The eldest look after the youngest and incorporate them into the play. This is not how it is done elsewhere, where children tend to operate is strictly age-stratified groups, and probably relates to the strong influence of family and the simple fact that if you only played with children of your own age+/-1 your group would be too small for any viable games.

Bus Ride Saint Helena Island Info Saints

Celebrations are interesting. Big family events are usually held at the local Community Centre, but what do you do for a Hen Night, or if you and your work colleagues want to celebrate some event, or you simply want to party? Restaurants are too expensive and bars will only usually close for a private party until 10pm. For a group of 20-30 people the answer is a ‘Bus Ride’. This is exactly what the name implies. Everybody boards a bus (possibly a normal take-you-to-work bus, but there are a few dedicated vehicles), and travels around the island, visiting the various bars but by far the majority of drinking and partying takes place on the travelling bus itself. Normally only the bus driver remains sober! It is sometimes said that more than just tobacco is smoked on some bus rides but we have no evidence of this. Plo is often cooked and eaten onboard. Fancy dress (or even rather limited dress) is normal. Pole dancing is popular (the bus provides several convenient poles). The party continues until the participants run out of energy or the bus driver decides to call a halt, and then everybody is delivered either home or to one of the bars to continue partying.

Talking of celebrations, special days, for example St Helena’s Day, are celebrated with great fervour. Compare this to England, where most people could not even say when St George’s Day is…{8} And the Christmas lights in Half Tree Hollow would put Las Vegas to shame!

St. James Saint Helena Island Info Saints

Church used to be a bigger thing on St Helena than it is today. Formerly most people attended on a Sunday morning and many on Sunday evening too. Nowadays most Saints will only attend for ‘hatching, matching and despatching’. The majority of Saints are nominally Anglican{9}, but that does not mean they are practicing Christians - many were Confirmed simply because the local Anglican Church will not allow you to be a Godparent unless you have been Confirmed, and being a Godparent is an important family position. The non-Anglican churches have a higher rate of attendance amongst their members but even so most Saints on a Sunday morning are engaged in more normally British pursuits - washing the car; fixing up the house or just sleeping off the effects of the bus ride the night before! Sunday Lunchtime is when you visit relatives for ‘Sunday Dinner’, which usually goes on well into the evening thus precluding evening Church attendance by all but the dedicated few. It should also be noted that bars used to close at midnight on Saturday and remain closed all day Sunday, as did shops and pretty-much everything else. Now the bars don’t close until 1:30am Sunday and re-open early on Sunday morning. Shops open Sundays and a 2017 Ordinance now allows businesses to open and alcohol to be sold on Good Friday and Christmas Day (previously prohibited). The various religions on St Helena operate separately but apparently without rancour{10}. Stories are occasionally told of people being refused jobs because they are of the ‘wrong’ religion, but then rumours abound here about almost anything and no hard evidence has ever been uncovered. Even atheists are accepted{11}!

Radio 90.5MHz Saint Helena Island Info Saints

The radio plays an important part in St Helena life. Before TV and the Internet it was the primary means of official news distribution (though Rumour was - and still is - quicker). Many older Saints have limited literacy so radio took over where newspapers could not reach. Even though most Saints now have access to TV and/or the Internet, wherever you go you will hear a radio playing, especially in shops and even in offices. Birthday dedications are more essential than birthday cards{12}. A particularly busy morning at the radio studios is when the RMS is about to leave, with everybody ringing up to request ‘leaving songs’ for friends and relatives. ‘Sailing’ (Rod Stewart) is popular, but presumably once the RMS has been replaced by air travel ‘Leaving on a Jet Plane’ will take over. ‘The Announcements’ (radio adverts), read after the News, are so popular that when you contact Connect St Helena to ask why your electricity has gone off they will advise that they announced the interruption on the radio and be incredulous that you therefore didn’t know.

Taking about rumour, it has been said that the only thing that can exceed the speed of light is a rumour on St Helena. Maybe it started when the radio was Government-controlled and only told people what the Government of St Helena wanted them to know, or perhaps it’s much older. Mis-deeds of the ex-patriate Government officials are the basis of many rumours, the majority of which have no basis whatsoever in fact. A woman seen accepting a lift in a man’s car will start stories spreading that they are ‘Talking To’ each other, i.e. having an affair. Anything that might happen on St Helena is surrounded by a selection of rumours ranging from: It will happen; It won’t happen; or Something entirely different will happen. As a consequence of this, secrecy is much prized and extremely hard to achieve. It has been known for a woman to be congratulated by passers-by on her way to the hospital to get the results of her pregnancy test.

Gossip Saint Helena Island Info Saints

Sport Saint Helena Island Info Saints

Sport is popular, though probably no more so than in Britain or Europe. Local sport is usually played Saturdays & Sundays on Francis Plain and many families with both adult and child participants effectively camp out on ‘The Plain’ for the weekend. Plo is prepared and beer is consumed. Things are smoked. Work on Monday is time to rest. What happens if you don’t like sport? For adults there have always been other options but until recently the only group for teenagers was New Horizons which has a sport and physical activities orientated ethos (though not exclusively so). Nowadays Creative Saint Helena runs the ‘In+ventive’ arts-based youth club and teenagers wanting to play computer games with others can go to the ‘Geek Boutique’ computer gaming emporium, open most nights except Sundays.

One thing that is not popular amongst Saints is precise timekeeping. If something is supposed to start as 10:00 the chances are it will get underway sometime between 10:00 and 10:25. We explore this further (and advance a tentative explanation) on our Time page.

Saint cuisine is also distinctive, being a fusion of the many groups from which Saints were derived. It is not uncommon to be served roast meat & potatoes with curry on the same plate. We explore local food more on our Fishcakes, and other food page.

And then there is the distinctive way Saints speak

Some aspects of Saint Culture can be clearly seen to be routed in the island’s past, particularly its former isolation and relative poverty. Being resourceful is essential. If you wait to import the precise replacement part for your broken car, fridge or other machine it will be out of action for months, even assuming that the necessary part is still available. So you adapt something else to do the job. A car that was originally a Ford can quickly become mostly Ford, partly Vauxhall and with a bit of Toyota thrown in. One of the local garages even machines spare parts for old cars, long since discontinued by the original manufacturer. Also, few people could afford to go away from St Helena on holiday, so in the old days people used to stay in the disused DWS buildings at Piccolo Hill until these were re-purposed to house Government officials. People still go to Blue Hill Community Centre (usually referred to as ‘camping’, but often there are no tents are involved).

Country Music Saint Helena Island Info Saints

While most particularly older Saints like Country Music, many other styles are popular on the island which, for example, boasts several Rock Bands (including Blue Magic). S.A.M.S. Radio 1 plays mostly non-Country music and most modern styles have their fans. The days when if you didn’t want to listen to Loretta Lynn or Charley Pride you had few opportunities for entertainment are gone (though you would do well to avoid The Standard on Saturday nights and Saint FM Community Radio all day on Sundays!)

LGBT Saint Helena Island Info Saints

Being Gay used to be more of a problem here than it is today. Recent arrivals of openly Gay ex-pat officials have made ‘being out’ much easier than it was and where previously many Gay Saints simply left the island, some are now returning. If world norms apply around 10% of Saints are Gay.

Other often-quoted aspects of ‘Saint-ness’ are:

  • Union flag Saint Helena Island Info Saints

    Fierce loyalty to the UK and The Queen (or King). Most houses have at least one royal portrait on display and Saints see themselves as irrevocably British. Even when the UK denied them Citizenship that loyalty did not significantly waver. It is sometimes said there is more chance of getting Americans to be ruled by Russia than there is of getting Saints to be anything other than British. The motto ‘Loyal And Unshakeable’ may have dubious origins but is unquestionably accurate.

  • Politeness and courtesy. Both of these have largely survived the arrival of TV and the Internet (though this can sometimes be lacking in postings on Facebook™!) The effect of this is that most Saints have a strongly ‘live-and-let-live’ attitude to anybody who is different from themselves.

  • Lack of colour prejudice. Because of their mixed genetic history Saints themselves vary in colour from darker more-African to almost white and facially some appear more European, or African, or Asian, or none of these. All live together in harmony without distinction{13}. The concept of racially-segregated areas, clubs, etc. would seem ridiculous to Saints. Interestingly, though, it is generally considered more beautiful to have a lighter skin.

beer Saint Helena Island Info Saints

It should be noted that alcohol has been an issue on St Helena since the 18th Century. Early attempts to control the consumption of Arrack{23} largely ended in failure and while most Saints treat alcohol responsibly, a few do not. In this respect St Helena is no different from most communities worldwide, though Governor Hollamby is on record as describing alcohol as “the biggest social ill on the island”, blaming it for much of the island’s crime. There are few social events on St Helena that do not involve alcohol and even events notionally for children will normally also have a bar. There are few evening adult entertainments where alcohol is not available. Alcohol is a fact-of-life here. Incidentally, the island’s first ever Temperance Society meeting was held on 21st July 1851, and a Total Abstinence League was formed on 6th November the same year. There is no trace of either today.

Freemasons, 1941 Saint Helena Island Info Saints
Freemasons, 1941{15}

There are Freemasons on St Helena but they are hardly a secret society. In such a small community everybody knows who the Masons are, where and when they meet (alternate Tuesday evenings in Napoleon Street{16}), etc. Their influence on St Helena is unclear.

Laid back Saint Helena Island Info Saints

Governor Gallwey frequently expressed frustration at what he described as the ‘laid back’ attitude of the Saints. The 1921 Mason report into St Helena Agriculture stated that in Saints “self-reliance and initiative are - with a few exceptions - to a great degree lacking.” This is all completely untrue. Saints are as industrious and hard-working as anybody anywhere, but what Governor Gallwey and Mason were probably responding to was a lack of enthusism for yet another ‘make everybody rich’ plan. So many of these have been tried without success (see our Industries page for many) a degree of cynicism is only to be expected.

When dealing with Saints be aware that they are normally not confrontational. Do not assume that because the person does not advance and defend a counter argument that means they agree with you. The reasons for this may be that in a small and very connected community it is tricky to speak out, or it may be that in not too distant history the ‘colonial masters’ didn’t care what the Saints thought and ignored their opinions (and as the ‘Bailey Bridge’ project and the Airport Wind Shear debacle illustrates, they sometimes still don’t!) This also perhaps explains why many of the letters printed in our newspapers are written under a pseudonym{22}.

Inter-District Tug-of-War, 1970s Saint Helena Island Info Saints
Inter-District Tug-of-War, 1970s

It used to be that, after your family, the next most important group was your District. Previously you were schooled locally and worked locally, so your District mattered. These days this is much less the case. Most of the local primary schools have closed, all secondary education is centralised at Prince Andrew School and with improved transport only farmers tend to work locally. District distinctions, including regional dialects, have declined and are noticeable only in a few, mostly older Saints.

Half Tree Hollow Saint Helena Island Info Saints

Owning your own home is also important. According to the 2016 Census 72% of Saints own the home in which they live and 63% of them own it outright. Houses and the land on which they are built are passed down through the family, and it is not uncommon for the children’s house to be built within the plot owned and occupied by the parents. This explains why areas such as Half Tree Hollow are apparently crowded; sizeable plots have been divided and sub-divided over the generations.

Most Saints are not comfortable with satire, which is often seen as a personal attack rather then humourous. This even applies to politicians…

Saints Overseas

Saints Overseas Saint Helena Island Info

Saints moving abroad often settle in groups, thus recreating island life as much as possible. The Saints on Ascension Island and The Falklands live, work and socialise together, and most of the Saints in the UK live in an area of Swindon (Wiltshire) usually known as ‘Swindhelena’. Cape Town is said to house more Saints than are living on St Helena. Those that live in the UK, and many living elsewhere in Europe and beyond travel whenever possible for the annual Reading Sports.

Off-Island Saints on Facebook™ always refer to St Helena as ‘home’ and remain fiercely loyal, even though many have not lived here or even visited for more than twenty years. There is also a tendency amongst them to be more cautious about developments on St Helena, with many decrying the passing of the RMS; they perhaps want St Helena to remain as they remember it?

Why ‘Saints’?

The history of the title ‘a Saint’ is obscure. It does not seem to have religious origins. According to our research the term was probably coined by Americans in the 1940s to describe the people from St Helena who worked on Ascension Island building the airport there. It certainly doesn’t seem to appear in any earlier Records{14}. The nickname ‘The Old Saints’ was given to the St Helena Regiment in the 19th Century but it doesn’t seem to have been applied more generally.

Where did Saints come from?

The ethnic group that we now know as Saints also has an interesting genesis. Originally the island was settled by ethnic English, who were divided (by social class) into Planters{18} (i.e. landowners) and skilled craftsmen. Unskilled manual labour was provided by ‘Blacks’. A fourth group was ‘The Regiment’ - soldiers serving here, either for the East India Company or the Crown. These groups intermingled to some extent - soldiers married tradesman’s, and sometimes Planters{18}’ daughters - but it was illegal for a non-Black to have any form of relationship with a Black, and the Records{14} give several accounts of quite serious penalties being applied against transgressors (there are some examples on our Titbits from the records page). These divisions remained even after the emancipation of the slaves in the early 19th Century.

Liberated Africans Saint Helena Island Info Saints
Liberated Africans

From about 1840 to 1849 nearly 300 slave ships were intercepted by the Royal Navy and 15,076 freed slaves, known as ‘Liberated Africans’ were landed on the island. Most of those who did not die from their mistreatment were shipped off to other destinations, but according to the ‘Blue Book’{19}s around 1,000 chose to settle here. Sometime between then and today the divisions between white and black broke down and the formerly separate groups began to inter-marry. St Helena’s physical isolation was probably a factor in this; it would be hard to remain in segregated groups in an area of only 16 by 8 kilometres, or 121 km²(see our How Small Is St Helena? page to understand this better.). Some of the Chinese labourers also joined the mix, as later did many of the Boer Prisoners and it is hard to imagine that the many visiting sailors and Whalemen did not make their own genetic contribution, and so gradually the homogenous group we now know as Saints came about. Certainly in 1864 Bishop Welby, writing to the UK, referred to:

…a large native population of East Indian, African, Malay, Chinese and all European races blended together…

It is often said that the genetic makeup of Saints can be defined by the three ‘S’s - Settlers, Soldiers and Slaves, but actually it is more complex than that. One Saint has traced his lineage back to white settlers, black slaves, a Chinaman and a Boer. Another identified genetic markers from Europe, various different parts of Africa, India, various parts of Asia and Scandinavia{20}.

Incidentally, slaves were only ever known by a firstname, and freed slaves were often given as a surname the firstname of their former owner. This explains the number of islanders with surnames like Benjamin, Duncan, Francis, George, Henry, Joshua, Lawrence and Leo.

Read More

Below: The Doctorate Thesis ‘Spatial identities of the citizens of Saint Helena’ (2002)Article: “What makes a Saint?”Article: “What it means to be a Saint essays”

More stories on our page Read articles about St Helena.

The Doctorate Thesis ‘Spatial identities of the citizens of Saint Helena’ (2002)

Maarten & Daniël - ‘The Dutchies’ - in 2002 Saint Helena Island Info Saints
Maarten & Daniël - ‘The Dutchies’ - in 2002

By Maarten Hogenstijn & Daniël van Middelkoop, University of Utrecht.{17}

Although written in 2002, this provides a picture of what it means to be a Saint that is still remarkably current at the time of writing{21}. Also, despite being a Doctorate Thesis the document is very readable with only a little jargon. We quote from this below.

You can download and read the entire Thesis (5.7Mb){17}.

Article: “What makes a Saint?”

Extracted from the Doctorate Thesis ‘Spatial identities of the citizens of Saint Helena’{17}

Looking at the issue of social identity in less scientific terms leads to the question: what makes a Saint? This was exactly the question of an essay competition held in Prince Andrew School in July 2002. It is interesting to first hear what young Saints themselves see as core elements of being a Saint.

A number of key elements were stressed throughout the essays, some of which were published in the St Helena Herald of 19th July 2002. In a general review of the essays, a teacher wrote: “Saint Helenians are proud of their island, their reputation for courtesy and friendliness, lack of colour prejudice, acceptance of other religious denominations and their loyalty”. Other typicalities of Saints that were apparent throughout the essays included:

  • resourcefulness;

  • local dialect;

  • local food;

  • sense of freedom.

The first prize winner of the competition was Lesley Constantine. It is worth quoting his essay at some length:

St. Helena is an isolated island in the South Atlantic Ocean. The only access is by ship. Perhaps this is why Saints are renowned for improvising. The island develops slowly at times, and this can be seen as being for the better. It has been said that Saints don’t like change. In my opinion, it is only natural for islanders to greet change with mixed feelings because change can threaten the culture of our island.

…Many visitors will notice how everyone greets them and St Helenians are known as some of the friendliest people in the world. Our island has shaped the way we approach life. There is little crime and we have almost nothing to fear. That is why we welcome others and hope that they will feel as we do about our home.

…Saints are made by the island which we live on; the ground which we tread upon has our culture embedded in it.

Second prize winner Jackie Williams stressed other aspects of being a Saint:

If you are born here or have parents from St Helena you are born into an island wide family. One of the unique and wonderful things about St Helena is that everyone knows everyone else. St Helena is also proud to say that people here can let their guards down and just have fun, because we have no major crimes committed.

In our interviews, many of the same issues came up. Comments on the identity of Saints can be grouped under the following headings:

  • Ethnic background;

  • Britishness and dependency;

  • Insularity;

  • Family life and social control;

  • Uniqueness.

Article: “What it means to be a Saint essays”

St Helena Herald Saint Helena Island Info Saints

Here is the St Helena Herald’s report on the essays discussed above{17}

Some of the children at Prince Andrew School were asked to write a page about what it means to be a Saint Helenian. Here is a summary of what came out of those written by all the children. Of course, these are the ideals and we all know that we are not as perfect as they sound, but this is the best of what a St Helenian can be, and how most of our children see us.

We accept each other as “brothers and sisters”, and are, generally “tolerant towards and accepting of others”, and see ourselves as “One Community”.

St Helenians are proud of their island, their reputation for courtesy and friendliness, lack of colour prejudice, acceptance of other religious denominations, and their loyalty.

They feel they are diplomatic, and one comment said “We are very tolerant people who don’t like change and grumble among ourselves when something doesn’t suit us, but we accept everything.” This has been true in the past at least - let us hope not now!!

Resourcefulness was stressed in the fact that we can make something out of nothing - be it food or repairs.

The local dialect came in for comment. Just as we cannot understand a strong Scottish, Irish, Geordie or Dorset dialect - although all English, - so foreigners find it difficult to understand the St Helena dialect. It is something that people are rightly proud of, as language is part of identity.

Food was a big feature - mentioning how Saints adore their food, and how people take a great deal of pride in preparing the traditional dishes.

The sense of freedom that we have is in sharp contrast to the outside world - and something which our young people cherish. Long may it last!

Closing Humour Image Saint Helena Island Info Saints

Laugh at funny saints humour - LOL Saint Helena Island Info

Rumours


Credits:

{a} St Helena Online from Reading Sports.



Footnotes:

{1} Normally we would give a year, as in ‘Immigration Control Ordinance, 2011’, but this Ordinance is constantly being changed so whatever date we gave would probably be incorrect within a few months.

{2} Sorry - doesn’t everybody like Plo???

{3} And with the caveats outlined in the Editor’s Personal Note (above).

{4} Sometimes your family reputation and standing can be more important than your individual skills and personality, which is sad when it means you get turned down for a job you are qualified to do, and equally sad when you are given a job for which you are not really qualified.

{5} Nobody it seems, even the clergy, wants to work at the weekend.

{6} And because everybody pretty much knows everybody else’s family, the system isn’t abused - if you tried to get the day off for a funeral that didn’t exist or where you weren’t related your employer would know immediately.

{7} According to the 2016 Census only 35% of Saints declared themselves as Married. 41% described themselves as Single and 13% as Co-habiting.

{8} 23rd April.

{9} 83.8%, according to the 2016 Census.

{10} Although it should be noted that, apart from Bahá’ís and Atheists, most are variations of Christianity.

{11} Saint Helena Island Info’s editor is openly atheist.

{12} Possibly a cost issue but also there is no local door-to-door postal delivery and a birthday card that you have to go to the local shop to collect loses some of its impact!

{13} Note that there is a degree of divide between resident Saints and the ex-patriate (usually from the UK) Government officials, who are sometimes viewed locally as being aloof and overpaid. They are, however, still treated with courtesy and any grumbling that may occur applies equally whether the official is white or black, so can be seen more as an economic issue rather than a racial one.

{14} The St Helena Records is a collection of documents dating back to the earliest days of St Helena, held in the Government of St Helena Archives. The Archives can be accessed in person or via email - see our Family And Friends page for more. From the records and other sources we have compiled an events database, which drives our events-based pages e.g. On This Day page. You can search our events database in various ways on our Chronology page.

{15} In this case the Governor is not present, but other Governors have been members - including Governor Capes.

{16} We understand that prior to Napoleon’s exile Napoleon Street was known as Cock Street. We do not know exactly when it was renamed. The moonbeamsforall.com: Moonbeams Shop • opens in a new window or tab Saint Helena Island Info SaintsMoonbeams Shop is in Napoleon Street.

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

{18} The original term for the Settlers, from 1659 onwards and still in use in the 19th Century. When slaveswere emancipated they we given the status of Planters (but no financial means to acquire any land to plant).

{19} Formally the ‘Colonial Annual Report’ - a document setting out the island’s income, expenditure and other administrative matters for the year. Signed by the Governor or acting Governor usually in April-June of the year following.

{20} Most of these are explained by St Helena being on the main sailing route between Britain and the far east. The Scandinavian link may come from the 19th Century whaling fleets.

{21} .

 

Anon Saint Helena Island Info Saints

{22} Though other explanations have also been advanced. Yes, it can be challenging to voice an opinion that might upset someone else in your family, but there have also been recent documented examples of employers badly treating employees who have spoken out in the press against them. There is no ‘whistle-Blower Charter’ here. The image (right) comes from a 2017 newspaper{17}.

{23} A locally-brewed spirit distilled from potatoes that is mentioned often in the Records{14}. Its origins are in South and Southeast Asia, where it is made from either the fermented sap of coconut flowers, sugarcane, grain or fruit, depending upon the country of origin. Since it became economic to import spirits from overseas its production seems to have been discontinued.



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