Jamaica was an island of the Greater Antilles, situated in the Caribbean Sea. It was approximately 620 kilometres (385 mi) northeast of the Central American mainland. It contained the colony of Port Royal.
Jamaica was discovered by Christopher Columbus in 1494. The first Spanish settlers arrived on the island in 1510. The Spaniards grew sugar and bananas on Jamaica but it remained mainly a re-supplying stop between Central America and Spain. Meanwhile the native people, Arawaks, were decimated by European diseases. They were also enslaved. Eventually the native population was almost wiped out. From 1517 the Spaniards imported African slaves to work in Jamaica.
In 1655, the island was captured by the English expedition led by Admirals Penn and Venables. A few years after capturing the island, the British imported African slaves on large scale for sugar plantations. Jamaica brought prosperity to the English plantation owners and many English cities. Plantation dominated economic, political and religious life on the Island.
In 1657 Jamaica became a base of operations for English buccaneers, pirates and privateers, including Captain Henry Morgan. Port Royal was an infamous pirate locale, though this was countered through the efforts of individuals such as Governor Weatherby Swann and Commodore James Norrington of the British Royal Navy. Lord Cutler Beckett of the East India Trading Company set himself up in Jamaica, and from there spearheaded a war against piracy across the Seven Seas.
Behind the scenes
- Jamaica was featured in Terry Rossio's original script for Dead Men Tell No Tales. Following the Battle for the Fountain of Youth, Philip Swift would part ways with Syrena, eventually becoming a cartographer's apprentice in Kingston, spending years in search of a legendary mermaid treasure called the Mermaid Trove, hoping to be reunited with his love.
- Jamaica was featured in Jeff Nathanson's 2013 early draft of the Dead Men Tell No Tales script, serving as the main British location, a role which was played by Saint Martin in the final version of the script.
- Jamaica appears in the video game Pirates of the Caribbean: Armada of the Damned. But, since that game was canceled, it is unknown if the island's appearance in the game is canon or not.
- Jamaica appears in Tim Powers' novel, On Stranger Tides, which was used as the basis for Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides.
- Jack Sparrow: Bold New Horizons (Mentioned only)
- The Price of Freedom (First identified as Jamaica)
- Pirates of the Caribbean: Armada of the Damned
- Legends of the Brethren Court: Wild Waters (Mentioned only)
- Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl (First appearance)
- Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl (comic)
- The Guardians of Windward Cove
- Smoke on the Water
- Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest
- Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End (video game)
- The Brightest Star in the North: The Adventures of Carina Smyth
- Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales