[1972] Sisters Elected To Parliament

The Free Lance-Star, Fredericksburg, VA
December 6th, 1972

[c. 1900] Bermuda Stone


The predominance of stone as a building material came about early in Bermuda's history. The first settlers built using the native and abundant Bermuda cedar, but such structures were rarely able to withstand either the normal winds or the occasional hurricane. Further, the Somers Isles Company intended to exploit the value of cedar wood, particularly for shipbuilding, and soon passed laws that forbade the felling and use of that wood without express permission. Settlers turned the limestone foundation with the stone being cut into square bricks – typically about 2 feet (610 mm) by 10 inches (250 mm).


Picture: Bermuda: Souvenir guide and business directory...
J.W. Dalton [Boston, The International Pub. Co., 1901., p 21.]

[1976] Independence an issue in 1976

As can be seen in this news reports, independence was a hot topic in 1976; however, almost 20 years later the country voted against it in a referendum.

Click for larger image
Winnipeg Free Press, March 25th, 1976

[1973] Bermuda Governor murdered

The Victoria (Texas) Advocate, March 12th, 1973

[1922] Hotel development advertised (New York Tribune)

Bermuda continued its growth as a tourist destination. Here the island is promoted as a recreational resort and its hotels are advertised in the New York press.

New-York tribune., December 17, 1922, Page 9
Image provided by: Library of Congress, Washington, DC

[c.1909] Bermuda hotels



Source: Bermuda Verses By William Lawrence (Larry) Chittenden
G.P. Putnam's and Sons | The Kickerbocker Press | 1909

[1893] Bermuda seeks tariff reciprocity from U.S.



The New York Times, Wednesday July 17, 1893, p8.

[1910] Mark Twain returns from Bermuda one week before his death


The New York Times, April 15, 1910
Click image to view full article

Mark Twain's last letter was written from Bermuda:




Source: Mark Twain's letters, Volume 1 (of 2) By Mark Twain, Albert Bigelow Paine.

Harper & Brothers Publishers, 1917.

From the same:

From the early Bermuda letters we may gather that Mark Twain's days were enjoyable enough, and that his malady was not giving him serious trouble, thus far. Near the end of January he wrote: "Life continues here the same as usual. There isn't a flaw in it. Good times, good home, tranquil contentment all day and every day, without a break. I shouldn't know how to go about bettering my situation." He did little in the way of literary work, probably finding neither time nor inclination for it. When he wrote at all it was merely to set down some fanciful drolleries with no thought of publication.

We sailed on the 12th of April, reaching New York on the 14th, as he had planned. A day or two later, Mr. and Mrs. Gabrilowitsch, summoned from Italy by cable, arrived. He suffered very little after reaching Stormfield, and his mind was comparatively clear up to the last day. On the afternoon of April 21st he sank into a state of coma, and just at sunset he died. Three days later, at Elmira, New York, he was laid beside Mrs. Clemens and those others who had preceded him.

[1881] Letters From Bermuda


Letters written from Bermuda originally for the Concord (NH) Daily Chronicle, were published in book form in 1881. Click here to read the book.

[c.1911] Panoramic photograph of Hamilton

From the new Cathedral tower, south.








By W. H. Wallace, photographic illustrator, 563 Amsterdam Avenue, New York. Repository: Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C. 20540 USA

[1968] The Bermuda Constitution



In 1968 the UK Government enacted a Constitution for Bermuda that sets out its structure of government. Queen Elizabeth II is head of state and is represented in Bermuda by a Governor, whom she appoints. Internally, Bermuda has a parliamentary system of government. The British Governor has reserved powers in three areas which are External Affairs, Internal Security and the Police.

UK Statutory Instrument (SI 1968 No. 1821968) | The Bermuda Constitution Order.

[1957] Advertisement for the Bermuda Electric Light Co.


Advertisement for the Bermuda Electric Light Co. from Bermuda Historical Quarterly | Spring Quarter | 1957 | Volume XIV. No.1.

[1995] Bermuda voters reject independence


Click for larger image
The Jamaican Weekly Gleaner, August 25-31st, 1995

[1921] Bermuda criminalises the export of liquor to US



The Eighteenth Amendment (XVIII) of the United States Constitution established the Prohibition of alcohol in the United States. Its ratification was certified on January 16, 1919 and came into effect one year after ratification, on January 17, 1920. It is the only amendment to the Constitution that has been repealed (by the Twenty-first Amendment) (1933).

[1939] Bermuda film includes railway



Includes footage of the Bermuda Railway.

[before 1949] Town of St. George



Source: The Rotarian,  May 1949.

Established in 1911, The Rotarian is the official magazine of Rotary International and is circulated worldwide. Each issue contains feature articles, columns, and departments about, or of interest to, Rotarians. Seventeen Nobel Prize winners and 19 Pulitzer Prize winners – from Mahatma Ghandi to Kurt Vonnegut Jr. – have written for the magazine.

Picture from issue May 1949, p39.
64 pages
Vol. 74, No. 5
ISSN 0035-838X
Published by Rotary International

From an article in that magazine entitled:

 Bermuda | At New York's Front Door | By Sir Stanley Spurling

[1953] The Big 3 Conference

Kindley Airport, December 3rd, 1953: An Air France jet arrives with French Premier Joseph Laniel arriving for the Big 3 Conference. He is greeted by the Governor of Bermuda, along with UK Prime Minister, Winston Churchill, and UK Foreign Secretary, Anthony Eden. Also in attendance is the regimental mascot of the Welsh Fusiliers. They were joined later by US President Dwight D. Eisenhower for the meeting at the Mid Ocean Club, Tucker's Town.

For the rationale for the conference, see clipping below the video.

Video: Copyright © 2010 British Pathe Ltd
Clipping: Copyright 2011 Oxford University Press


Opens in new window. There is sound later in the video.


[1941-43] Land reclamation to form Kindley Air Force Base, St. David's



The reclamation was carried out by the US Army by levelling Longbird Island, and smaller islands at the North of Castle Harbour, infilling waterways and part of the harbour to make a land-mass contiguous with St. David's Island. This added 750 acres (3 km2) to Bermuda's land mass, bringing the total area of the base to 1,165 acres (4.7 km2).

The airfield was completed in 1943, and known as Kindley Field after the Great War aviator Field E. Kindley.

The land has been variously used as an airfield, a US Naval Air Station and latterly as the site of Bermuda International Airport.

[1939-45] RAF Darrell's Island



Flying boats of RAF Transport (the two PB2Y Coronado aircraft) and Ferry Commands on the tarmac at RAF Darrell's Island during the Second World War. From personal collection. Original photograph from Wing Commander Mo Ware, Commanding Officer of RAF forces in Bermuda during the War.

[1966] Destination Bermuda, travel film

Commissioned by the Bermuda Trade Development Board

[1924] The Royal Gazette (founded 1828)

The Royal Gazette, founded in 1828, Bermuda's only daily newspaper. See below archived copy of the paper from 1924 (courtesy Digital Library of the Caribbean).

The Royal Gazette and Colonist Daily (Jan. 21st, 1924)
The Royal Gazette (Feb. 14, 1882)

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[mid to late 1920s] Bermuda becomes a popular destination

In the early 20th century, as modern transport and communication systems developed, Bermuda became a popular destination for wealthy American, Canadian and British tourists arriving by frequent steamship service.

In the first picture is Charles Gerald Roosen, the mayor of Delano, Minnesota, with his daughter Lotta Roosen Bachman in a wickerwork pedal chair cab; driver unidentified.


Hamilton and the harbour, 1926 (click to enlarge)

Passengers on cruise ship at port in Hamilton, 1929

Honeymoon couple in Bermuda, 1929

Girl on balustrade, 1929

Visitor from USA enjoys a legal beer during prohibition, 1929

[1940] Socialite Vincent Astor's private railway at Ferry Reach



Though he had homes in New York, Newport, and Rhinebeck, N.Y., Vincent Astor's favourite house was "Ferry Reach" in Bermuda. Built in 1932, it consisted of 20 acres of wooded estate overlooking Castle Harbour and included a private railway.

Read article from LIFE magazine.

LIFE, Jan 29, 1940
80 pages
Vol. 8, No. 5
ISSN 0024-3019
Published by Time Inc.

[1931-1948] The Bermuda Railway


The Bermuda Railway was a 21.7-mile (34.9 km) common carrier line that operated between October 31, 1931 and May 1, 1948, providing frequent passenger and freight service over its length spanning most of the archipelago from St. George in the east to Somerset, Sandys Parish, in the west.

The railway was a single-track, standard-gauge line (with 14 passing sidings) that ran mainly along a coastal route to minimize land acquisition for the right-of-way. This meant that extensive trestles and bridgework were necessary, indeed more than ten percent of the line was elevated on 33 separate structures of timber or steel construction spanning the ocean.

In 1924 the Bermuda government granted a 40-year charter to the Bermuda Railway Company, and construction began in 1926 and completed 1931. The initial cost of construction and rolling stock purchase made it one of the most expensive cost-per-mile lines ever built. 

Maintenance also proved to be costly owing to the proximity of the line to sea air which made rot and corrosion significant. This and the introduction of private automobiles to the island after World War II, would ultimately doom the line.

In 1984, 18 miles (29 km) of the defunct rail line's right-of-way were dedicated as the Bermuda Railway Trail for hiking and, on some paved portions, biking. The Bermuda Tourism Department publishes a pamphlet describing the Trail's highlights, which Frommer's travel guide calls one of its "Favorite Bermuda Experiences", extolling its "panoramic seascapes, exotic flora and fauna, and soothing sounds of the island's bird life".



Picture 1: opening the line at Bridge Hill.
Picture 2: passengers alight at Shelly Bay station for the races.
Picture 3: copyright BalfourBeatty.com.

For many more images see our separate Bermuda Railway Gallery page.

[1957] Eisenhower and Macmillan in Bermuda

In January 1957, President Eisenhower invited British prime minister Harold Macmillan to a meeting designed to improve relations recently strained over U.S. criticism of the British role in the Suez Crisis. From 20 to 24 March, the two leaders met in Bermuda to demonstrate publicly their friendship—they had served together in North Africa during World War II—and to discuss privately their differences over Middle East issues.

  

Macmillan later wrote about President Eisenhower during the 20 minute ride to the Mid Ocean Club, after meeting and collecting him from the Civil Air Terminal in Bermuda: "He talked very freely to me - just exactly as in the old days. There were no reproaches - on either side; but (what was more important) no note of any change in our friendship or the confidence he had in me. Indeed, he seemed delighted to have somebody to talk to. In America, he is half King, half Prime Minister. This means that he is rather a lonely figure, with few confidants. He told me very frankly that he knew how unpopular Foster Dulles was with our people and with a lot of his people. But he must keep him. He couldn't do without him."


[1897] Book: Tom Moore in Bermuda: A Bit of Literary Gossip

Thomas Moore (28 May 1779 – 25 February 1852) was an Irish poet, singer, songwriter, and entertainer, now best remembered for the lyrics of The Minstrel Boy and The Last Rose of Summer.

In 1803 he was appointed registrar to the Admiralty in Bermuda. He spent around three months on the island, and drew inspiration from the scenery of Bermuda.

Tom Moore in Bermuda: A Bit of Literary Gossip - John Calvin Lawrence Clark, published by W.J. Coulter, Clinton, MA, 1897.

Click here to read the book.




















See also Walsingham House (Tom Moore's Tavern)

[1923] Bermuda Houses

Many examples of the use of indiginous limestone blocks and Bermuda cedar in domestic architecture are illustrated in Bermuda Houses, by John S. Humphreys, AIA - published by Marshall Jones Company, Boston 1923.





[c.1941] Bermuda House of Assembly

From LIFE magazine August 18th, 1941
View the full Magazine and the article: Old Bermuda


[c.1902] Front Street


Source: Stark's Illustrated Bermuda Guide, p5 | Boston | James H. Stark, Publisher, 1902

[1879] The Police Establishment Act 1879


During its early days Bermuda was policed by just nine constables, one for each Parish of the islands, who were appointed for twelve months unpaid, in a system akin to jury service. Inevitably, dissatisfaction with the quality of this part-time Constabulary led to the formation of the Bermuda Police Service under the Police Establishment Act, 1879.

The new body consisted of ten full time constables under Superintendent J. C. B. Clarke. Three of the constables were based in Hamilton with Clarke, three in St. George's with Chief Constable H. Dunkley, plus two officers in Somerset, and there were twenty-one part-time Parish constables.

The size of the police force tripled in 1901. The first Detective was appointed in 1919, and the service was reorganised in 1920 with eighteen constables recruited from the UK raising its strength to forty-six. The size of the force grew steadily over successive decades.

picture 1: Hamilton Police Constable Thomas Joseph Powell, ca. 1890 (Wikipedia)
picture 2: Police Cars, Hamilton 1957 (Flickr)

[1932] Women's Suffrage (2 of 2)



From: The Vote | The Organ of the Women's Freedom League (London, UK)
Vol. XXXIII No. 1171, April 1st, 1932

[1932] Women's Suffrage (1 of 2)



From: The Vote | The Organ of the Women's Freedom League (London, UK)
Vol. XXXIII No. 1175, April 29th, 1932

[1838] Bermuda as a penal colony of Canada?

The (London) Courier reports the Quebec Gazette.

[1907] Postcard of Aunt Peggie's No. 1, St Georges


[1813] British Act extending to Hamilton the importation of certain goods

British Parliamentary Act that further allowed for the Importation and Exportation of certain Articles [namely Plantation sugar and coffee] at Hamilton pursuant to an Act passed in the previous session of parliament that allowed the same at the Port of Saint George.

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