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Colonial Surgeon and Inspector of Hospitals, P. B. Ayres, $3,984,|| $288 for conveyance, and private practice.
Surgeon Superintendent of Lock Hospital, L. P. Marques, $1,800.
Superintendent of Civil Hospital, C. J. Wharry, M.D., $3,000.
Health Officer, W. S. Adams, M.D., $3,200.** Apothecary and Government Analyst, W. E. Crow, $1,920.††
Fire Brigade. Superintendent, H. E. Wodehouse, $960. Assistant Superintendents, Geo. Horspool and J. S. Brewer, $480 each.
Denmark, Hon. Wm. Keswick, consul.
France, Leon Déjardin, consul.
Germany, Dr. O. F. Von. Möllendorff, acting
Hawaiian Islands, Hon. Wm. Keswick, consulgeneral.
Italy, D. Musso, consul.
Japan, Teiske Minami, consul.
Peru, John Grant Smith, consul.
Portugal, A. G. Romano, consul-general.
Spain, Manuel Cárcer, consul.
Sweden and Norway, Peter Julius Rudolph Diedrich
United States, R. E. Withers, consul.
An island situated in the Caribbean Sea, and to the southward of the eastern extremity of the Island of Cuba, within N. lat. 17° 43′ and 18° 32'. and W. long. 76° 10' and 78° 20'. It is the largest of the British West Indies, being 144 miles in length, and 50 in extreme breadth, and containing about 4,913 square miles. There were 198 sugar estates in operation.
The Cayman Islands, lying between 19° 10′ and 19° 45' N. lat., and 79° 30' and 80° 35′ W. long., are appendages of Jamaica. The largest of the islands, Grand Cayman, contains about 2,000 inhabitants, who as well as the inhabitants of the other two, Little Cayman and Cayman Brac, are mainly engaged in catching turtle for export.
It is estimated that Jamacia contains 2,683,520 acres, from which may be deducted 365,828 acres as useless for agriculture, consisting chiefly of swamps, rocks, and inaccessible lands, leaving 2,317,692 acres available for cultivation. Of this 592,405 acres are returned as under cultivation in 1884.
Jamaica was discovered by Columbus on the 3rd May, 1494. He called it St. Jago. It remained in the posesssion of the Spaniards for 161 years, when it was attacked by a force sent by Cromwell, under Admirals Penn and Venables, against Hispaniola, and capitulated, after a trifling resistance, on the 3rd May, 1655. After the capture of the island, until the Restoration of Charles II, Jamaica remained under military jurisdiction. In 1660 the first establishment of a regular civil government was made by Charles II, who appointed G. D'Oyley Governor-in-Chief, with an Elective Council. In 1670 peace was made with Spain, and the title of England to Jamaica was recognized by the Treaty of Madrid. In 1807 the Slave Trade was abolished, at which time there were 323,827 slaves in Jamaica. During the last eight years of the trade, 86,821 slaves were imported. On the abolition of slavery in 1833, Jamaica received 6,161,9271. of the 20,000,0001. granted by the Imperial Government as compensation to the slave-owners; being rather more than 197. a head on a slave population of 309,338.
There is great variety of climate; the mean temperature of Kingston is about 80°, rising to 90° in the day time, and falling to 70° at night. As the temperature falls about 1° for every 300 feet of ascent, and as there is a lofty range of mountains which run down the middle of the whole island, it is
possible, in a few hours, to reach a cool and delightful climate. From Kingston, the capital, a change of 10 or 15° in temperature can be attained by a rde of three hours.
In the country the difference of temperature between day and night is seldom more than 10° and the difference of temperature in summer and winter is much less, say 5 or 6°.
During this century Jamaica was tolerably free from hurricanes and earthquakes, until the 18th ef August, 1880, when the effects of a cyclone were felt in the north and north-eastern portions of the island.
The rainy seasons are in May and October, and last for about three weeks; but besides these heavy and periodical rainfalls, the ground is refreshed by entinual showers. The annual rainfall varies throughout the island from about 30 inches to as much as 180 inches.
The Constitution, which, after existing for nearly 200 years in Jamaica, was surrendered in 1866, was a representative one, consisting of a Governor, a Frivy Council, a Legislative Council, and an Assembly of 47 elected members. The abolition of this form of government, and the substitution for it of a new form, resulted from the serious disturbacces amongst the black population which occurred in October, 1865.
After the suppression of disaffection in St. Thomas's-in-the-East, Governor Eyre, at the meetng of the Legislature, urged the unsuitability of the then existing form of Government to meet the circumstances of the community, and the necessity of making some sweeping change, by which a strong Government might be created.
The Legislature unanimously responded, abrorated all the existing machinery of legislation, and fit to Her Majesty's Government to substitute ty other form of Government which might be ketter suited to the altered circumstances of the Colony.
An Act of the Imperial Parliament and an Order | Council of the 9th April, 1866, were passed profiling a new Constitution for Jamaica, as follows:A Legislative Council was, by Orders in Council of the 11th June, 1866, and 11th November, 1869, established, consisting of such numbers of official and unofficial members as Her Majesty might think it. The numbers of each were six until 1878, When they were enlarged to eight, and a ninth was added in 1881. One or more persons to act Provisionally as unofficial. The Governor sat as President. The official members, by virtue of their ices, were the Senior Military Officer, the Secretary, and the Attorney-General.
Her Majesty, by Order in Council dated the 1th of May, 1884, was pleased further to alter Le constitution of the Legislative Council in the flowing manner :
The Council to consist of the Governor and four officio members, viz.: the Senior Military tier, the Colonial Secretary, Attorney-General and Director of Public Works, and such other persons not exceeding five in number as Her Majesty may from time to time appoint, or as the Governor may from time to time provisionally appant, and nine persons to be elected as therein provided. The Council shall be dissolved at the end of five years from the last preceding general election, if it shall not have been previously dissolved. The first general election was completed on the 12th September, 1884, and the Council met on the 30th idem.
There is also a Privy Council, consisting of the Lieutenant - Governor, if any, the Senior Military Officer in command, the Colonial Secretary, and Attorney-General, and such other persons, not to exceed eight in number, as may be named by the Queen, or provisionally appointed by the Governor subject to the approval of Her Majesty. Governor is to preside at each meeting, and the Governor and two members form a quorum. The Governor is to consult in all cases with the Councillors, excepting only when the case is of such a nature that this service would in his judgment sustain material prejudice by consultation, or when the matters to be decided are too unimportant to require their advice, or too urgent to admit of the necessary delay; and he is to propose all questions on which they are to advise and decide; but any member may apply in writing for permission to propose a question, and the member may record upon the minutes his written application" and the Governor's answer. The Governor is authorised to act in opposition to the advice and decision of the Privy Council, "if in any case it shall appear right so to do," and he must report to the Secretary of State for the Colonies "the grounds and reasons of his opposition, and any member may record on the minutes the nature of the advice or opinion brought under the consideration of the Privy Council.
In the Legislative Council, any member may propose questions for debate, excepting only that no law shall be enacted, nor any vote or resolu tion passed, nor any question admitted to debate, when the object is to dispose of or charge any part of the revenue, unless the proposition be made by the Governor, or the proposal expressly allowed or directed by him. All laws passed are to be styled, "Laws enacted by the Governor with the advice and consent of the Legislative Council of the Island of Jamaica."
For many years prior to the establishment of Crown Government, in 1866, the expenditure of the island exceeded the revenue by large amounts; but a better collection of the imposts, and the increase of the community in numbers and substance, has permitted a large increase of revenue and a considerable reduction of debt. The total general and local revenues of Jamaica amount to about 208. a head of the population, but this calculation includes local rates, railway telegraph and postal receipts, and reimbursements The customs tariff and the excise produce respectively 68. 6d. and 23. 4d, a head of the population. The taxes on land are almost nominal, yielding only about 12,0007.
The number of parishes (which are the units of local government) has been reduced from 22 to 14. Each parish has its own parochial institutions, viz., almshouses, &c., &c., managed by the Parochial Board of the parish, the members of which are, under a law of 1885, elected by the persons entitled to vote for the election of members of the Legislative Council. The several direct taxes received on land, houses, horses, carriages, &c., &c., are devoted entirely to the parish in which they are collected. The revenue is collected by the officers of the Revenue Department, with a collector in cach parish at the head of a branch office. The principal sums are derived from import duties, which yield about 250,0007.; excise duty on rum, at 5s. per gallon, yielding 86,000l.; stamps, 15,500l.; licenses, 16,000l.; and postal revenue, 16,500/ The new railway receipts, estimated at 47,300l. for 1885-86, and reimbursements 20,0007., swell the
total of revenue.
There is a regular postal service three times a-week to and from all parts of the island, and a daily one to some limited parts. The rate for letters by the tri-weekly post is 2d. per oz. ; but to those places with which there is daily communication the rate is 1d. per oz.
Government savings banks were established in 1871, in all the principal towns, and there is now deposited about 330,000l., on which the rate of interest has, from 1st April, 1881, been reduced from 4 to 3 per cent., with the result of a very inconsiderable withdrawal of deposits. The deposits, with the exception of a working balance, are invested in home and colonial securities, and the institution is thus self-supporting.
District courts, somewhat on the model of County Courts in England, are held all over the island. The judges are barristers or advocates.
The constabulary was placed on its present footing in 1867, and is modelled on the system of the Royal Irish Constabulary, and " partially under military organisation and discipline." There are 18 officers (inspectors and sub-inspectors), under an Inspector-General, and 693 sub-officers and men, distributed throughout the island.
An "island medical service," under the control of a superintending medical officer, was established in 1870. The several medical practitioners, who receive a retaining fee or salary from the Government, are designated "district medical officers." They are located throughout the island, and for the fixed salary paid by Government they have to attend sick paupers, parochial hospitals and almshouses, the constabulary officers and men, and prisons. For attending East Indian immigrants, vaccination, &c., &c., they are paid extra. They are not restricted in private practice, and at the same time are allowed the privileges of pension after twenty years' service, and six months' leave of absence on half-pay after six years' service.
There is regular and frequent communication between Europe and Jamaica. The Royal Mail contract steamers leave Southampton on every alternate Thursday throughout the year. The average passage is 17 days. The Royal Mail cargo steamers leave Southampton on 11th and 23rd of the month. The West India and Pacific steamers leave Liverpool on the 10th of each month, their average passage being 21 days. A French steamer leaves St. Nazaire once a month. There is also frequent steam communication between the United States and Jamaica.
Telegraphic communication with Europe is complete. Jamaica is the first British possession in
the West Indies which the cables from Cuba touch at, whence it branches away via St. Thomas, Barbados, &c., to Demerara, and in the opposite direction to the Isthmus of Panama.
A line of inland telegraph, connecting all the principal towns, and having 41 stations, is now completed.
The Government Railway extends from Kingston to Porus, in the parish of Manchester, in one direction, a distance of 50 miles, and to Ewarton, in the parish of Clarendon, in the other direction, a distance of 43 miles.
A weekly steam communication round the island to the principal outports has been established. The circuit is completed within 120 hours.
The rate of interest on the colony's debentures, which had been 6 per cent., was for some years subsequently reduced to 5 per cent., until the Railway Purchase and Railway Extension Loans were recently raised at 44 and 4 per cent. respectively.