Barbados during World War I and World War II

Stories about Barbados during the war years 1914 to 1945.

SS Quaker City torpedoed by U-156

SS Quaker City. Torpedoed 18th May 1942. The story of John Heller

The morning of the 18th May 1942 dawned like all previous mornings since the SS Quaker City, a Hog Island class merchant ship, left Bombay and sailed via South Africa on the way to Norfolk, Virginia. She was loaded with 4,500 tons of Manganese Ore. This is a very important ingredient in the production of steel …

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Col. Duke - 1939

The Duke Affair – A West Indian versus the colonial establishment

Oriel St. Arnaud Duke was born in Montserrat the second son of Dr Mansergh Duke, a Dublin doctor, and Emily née Wilkin. His family nickname was Konks. His first job was as a clerk in the Antiguan government. During World War I he volunteered for the British West India Regiment and was transferred to 10th …

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Frederick Gustave Ameile Delisle Saphile Wooding Deane FRCS

Frederick Gustave Ameile Delisle Saphile Wooding Deane RAMC FRCS Nov 1859 to 31 Oct 1935

Surgeon: Frederick Gustave Ameile Delisle Saphile Wooding Deane was born in Nevis of Barbadian Parents. His parents were Joseph Dean and Mary Elizabeth Ashby Wooding. Joseph Deane was working in the sugar industry at the time. When the family returned home Frederick went to school at Harrisons College. After completing his education in Barbados he …

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SS Scottish Star Survivors Arrive Barbados Feb 1942

British Ship: SS Scottish Star Torpedoed – 19th February 1942

This is the story of Sid Graham, Arthur Walker and Michael Doyle – three survivors of The Blue Star Line SS Scottish Star that was torpedoed 600 miles off of Barbados on 19th February 1942. The survivors lifeboat was towed into Barbados by the fishing boat “Stella” on 27th February 1942. The sixteen survivors remained …

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2nd Lt Walter Tull – first black infantry officer in British Army (1888 – 1918)

Walter Daniel John Tull was born in Folkestone, Kent, on 28 April 1888 to Barbadian carpenter Daniel Tull and Kent-born Alice Elizabeth Palmer.  In 1895, when Walter was seven, his mother died of cancer. A year later his father married Alice’s cousin, Clara Palmer. She gave birth to a daughter Miriam, on 11 September 1897. …

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Sidney Graham 2005 A forgotten Bajan WWII hero

Sid Graham. A forgotten Bajan WWII hero (1920 – 2017)

Sid Graham was born in Tidal Basin, Custom House in the London’s East End in 1920, the son of Sidney “Siddy” Graham a seaman from Barbados and his English wife Emma an East Ender.  Sid made it to his 97th birthday on 28th January 2017  and sadly passed away on 30th April 2017.  Until then …

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CNS Cornwallis torpedo damage

Torpedoing of the Cornwallis in Carlisle Bay, Barbados, 11th September 1942: 75th Anniversary

The torpedoing of the Cornwallis in Carlisle Bay, Barbados on the afternoon of Friday 11th September 1942 by German U-Boat 514 is remembered by older Bajans as the dark day in 1942 when World War II reached Barbados’ shores. The 75th anniversary of the torpedoing of the CNS Cornwallis in Carlisle Bay was Monday 11th …

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HMS Victorious 1942 commanded by Bajan Henry C. Bovell

Vice Admiral Henry C. Bovell (1893 – 1963)

Henry Cecil Bovell was born in Barbados on the 4th of January 1893 the only son of the Sir Henry Alleyne Bovell KC, Attorney General of Barbados, and Lady Annie Cecil (nee Briggs) Bovell.  He died aged 70 on 31st March 1963. He left Hazelwood School ( In Collymore Rock)  in the summer of 1905 for …

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