Accounts of the Final Settlement of the Jamaica Maroon Concerns in Nova Scotia : 1798-1804.

Call Number: HIL-MICL FC LPR .N6P8M7
Category: Nova Scotia
Creator: Nova Scotia. Public Records.
Description: 1 microfilm textual records () ; 35 mm

The Maroons, Black people in Jamaica who had fought against slavery for over a century, had just lost a rebellion against the British.  The group of Maroons from Trelawney Town were deported in 1796 from Jamaica to Nova Scotia after their failed rebellion.  Governor Wentworth was given financial support from Jamaica and Britain to assist the settlement of the Maroons (543 men, women and children) in what would become Preston (outside Halifax).  Discontentment among them arose for many reasons.  Governor Wentworth consequently accepted their request to go to Sierra Leone, West Africa, which they did in 1800.

            The documents detail the financial support given to the Jamaica Maroons mostly pertaining to their last year in Nova Scotia and the dispensation of their property upon leaving Nova Scotia in 1800.  The Records contain a volume of accounts and receipts for articles supplied and services rendered to the Maroons. Many records include detailed lists of food, clothing and other necessities with the amount charged for each item.  The accounts are arranged by date from 31 December 1798 to 8 May 1804.  Topics for research include black history, emigration, finances, business and commerce, health and medicine, Nova Scotia (Halifax, Preston, Boydville or Sackville area today), and Jamaica.  In providing information about the support given to the Maroons at the end of their stay in Nova Scotia, the documents also show some of the locals who profitted, including a few women.

Additional information can be gleaned from the documents: lists of supplies can include prices and supplier; service providers often contain the number of days or hours worked, wage expected and specifics of work. The documents, arranged chronologically, include the following matter:


One document indicating the supplies provided by John Lawlor for beef, sugar and fish for the use of the maroons.


1. Supplies - hay, medicines, foodstuffs (flour, indian meal, cracked corn, pollard)
2. Services - blacksmith, wheelwright, house rent, chaplain, Doctor Michael Head, labourer, building construction, overseer of labourers, assistant superintendant, surveyor of land, hauling baggage with oxeteam, horse hires to Boydville and Beaver Bank, and lawyer - Richard Uniacke for advice concerning lands at Dartmouth, right of road at Beaver Bank, care of maroon Smith, payment to sheriff for services of writ for the case of Smith versus Tinker, and drawing four deeds to establish the bounds of maroon lands


1. Services - arbitrators concerning partition lines of property, overseer of labourers, taking charge of property at Boydville such as securing windows and preserving buildings from August 1800 to June 1801, mason work for large house bought by Mr. Wallace for the accomodation of the maroons, advertising maroon land for sale, surveying maroon lands and subdividing into lots, superintendant of maroons from January to October, labour for the same time period, and lawyer - writing 41 deeds (Wentworth to purchasers of maroon property), drawing arbitration bonds respecting boundaries, and advice
2. Supplies - sadlery, foodstuffs - flour, indian meal, cracked corn, pollard from December 1800 to August 1801

1802 (14 January)

One document concerning services provided by John Howe in advertising maroon land for sale at Preston, Windsor Road and Cole Harbour.

1803 (30 April)

One document concerning the service of the Hon. Benjamin Wentworth for registering deeds from 1799 to 1803; among other services listed within - Cochran's release.

1804 (8 May)

One document concerning the services of Theophilus Chamberlain from January 1801 to 1804 for adjusting, arranging and making out all maroon accounts since 1800 to the final close, and making final settlement.
Originals: The original documents are held by the Nova Scotia Archives.
Archival Ref. No.: PANS MG 15, Series C, vol. 10.
Finding Aids:
Electronic Finding Aid Record:

Note found at the start of the film is misleading as it relates to content.

Related material:

Researchers may want to look at material in Great Britain. Colonial Office 217 (CO 217), pertaining to the British colony of Nova Scotia.  This includes correspondence between the governor of Nova Scotia and representatives in England.  The correspondence also contains enclosures, such as, a census taking of those leaving for Sierra Leone which also contained a description of each person's possessions as they boarded the vessel Asia (6 & 7 Aug. 1800) In the Loyalist catalogue record for CO 217, under Finding Aids, is found a link to a listing of each of the documents online as transcribed by Library and Archives Canada.

Papers Relating to the Negro Refugees held in The Loyalist Collection is relevant to this topic.

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