A Documentary History of the Cinnamon Bay Estate

1718 - 1917

PART I

Establishment and Consolidation, 1718 - 1755

The 300 acre Cinnamon Bay Plantation was formed by the gradual consolidation of three approximately 100 acre agricultural land grants, generally referred to in Danish as "plantagies" [SJLL, 1728]. While it is evident that at least two of these parcels were associated through common family ownership within a decade of their establishments, all were independently settled as singularly functioning endeavors. By virtue of necessity, each of these holdings would have been minimally comprised of a processing facility, known in the era as a "works"; a residence, with associated cook house and bake oven; a grouping of shelters for the enslaved laborers, collectively referred to as the "village"; and, a field system, made up of cultivated areas, land cleared for pasture, and substantial acreage left in forest to provide the necessary resources of timber and fuel-wood. It can therefore be stated, that within the bounds of the modern day Cinnamon Bay Estate, there lies at least some evidence of the remains of three well established early period plantagies, although to this date none of these original sites have been conclusively located or defined.

Initially, the three small agricultural holdings taken up at Cinnamon Bay were all known by the names of the owners. Hence the plantation name, Cinnamon Bay, was probably not adopted until well after the properties were merged to form a single estate, perhaps as late as the 1760s when it first appeared in mortgage records [MP, 1766-69]. The bay that fronted these properties, however, was noted as Cinnamon Bay in colonial documents dating back as far as the earliest records for St. John, so it may well be that the name predates Danish settlement [SJLL, 1728]. It is believed that the name was given to the bay for the abundance of "Kaneel boom", the Dutch term for Cinnamon trees, which early Europeans encountered there. These trees were not true Cinnamon trees, but rather a type of Myrtle which can still be found there today, pimenta racemosa, known locally as the Bay-rum Tree [Little & Wadsworth, 1964].

The Daniel Jansen Property

We may never know for certain which of the Danish colonists was the first to take up a plantagie at Cinnamon Bay, but the first to receive a formal Danish deed was Daniel Jansen, the Creole son of an Irish born St. Thomas innkeeper, John Hatch, and his Dutch born wife, Adriana Delicat.1 By the time St. John tax rolls began to be compiled in 1728, the thirty-nine year old Burger Captain Daniel Jansen was noted as the owner of a 3000 (Danish) foot long, by 2000 foot wide, Caneel Bay Quarter sugar plantagie which had been taken up since 1718, so it is presumed he was the original claimant of that property (see Map 1; parcel A, p. 18). Further supporting Jansen's early presence on St. John is the fact that his name appears on a list of the island's colonists compiled in 1722; however, no geographical location was indicated on that occasion [LD, 1720-22].

Although the sugar works on Jansen's plantagie was described in the 1728 tax rolls as "meedelmaadig" (mediocre or run-of-the-mill) [SJLL, 1728], even a rudimentary sugar operation would have been a fairly well developed affair. In 1718, when Governor Bradel first laid out a set of guidelines for the occupation of St. John, one of the six requirements was that a sugar works had to be erected within five years on penalty of the confiscation of the property [BD, 1718]. While it was later realized that not all of the land on St. John was suitable for growing sugarcane and the order was never enforced, any planter with the necessary capital and appropriate location was clearly encouraged to do so.

To establish a sugar plantagie, the first step was the arduous process of clearing away the dense subtropical forest which still covered much of the island. After the larger trees and woody bush were cut off, the land was further cleared by burning. As the task of preparing the ground for cultivation commenced, construction of the necessary plantagie structures was also begun. A circular, level earthen platform was built, upon which an animal driven crushing machine for the extraction of sugarcane juice was mounted. Next, a stout, fire resistant boiling house, with at least three built-in kettles, would begin to take shape, followed soon after by a warehouse, a shed for the dry-storage of fuel-wood and magass, a cooper's shop, pens for the property's beasts of burden, and a rum still. Additionally, shelters for the enslaved, a house for the overseer, and a residence with a detached cook house and bake oven, suitable for a prominent burger and his family, would all be raised in relative close proximity to the sugar factory complex (see Figure 1).

Figure 1: Depiction of a rudimentary sugar works

of the early eighteenth century

The largest of the properties that would later be merged to form the broader Cinnamon Bay estate, and the only one of the three which was well suited for development as a sugar plantagie, the Daniel Jansen parcel was the most economically viable of the holdings. As development of the property progressed, production capabilities increased, leading the Jansen family to seek additional lands in order to raise their level of production and attain maximum profitability from the holding. The first substantial expansion of the Jansen property came in 1728, not by purchase, but through the marriage of Daniel and Adriana Jansen's widowed daughter, Elizabeth, to Pieter Durloo. In that year, Durloo had expanded his St. John holdings to include a well situated shorefront cotton plantagie, which lay alongside the Jansen property (see Map 1; parcel B, p.18) [JP, Durloo vs. Jansen, 1745-49].

But Captain Jansen did not survive to realize his goal of establishing a large and lucrative sugar plantation on St. John. After his death in 1729 [JP, 1745-49], it was to be his widow and their heirs who would see the property through the final stages of development to emerge as a valuable and highly coveted estate.

Map 1: Detail from a 1918 United States survey map of

St. John overlaid with the approximate boundaries of

the Jansen (parcel A), Gandy/Durloo (parcel B), and

de Buyck/Beaudewyn (parcel C) plantagies.

The Gandy / Durloo Property

Described in the 1728 tax rolls as being located "inde flacten af Caneel Bay" (in the flat of Cinnamon Bay), Peter Durloo's newly acquired cotton plantagie bounded the Jansen holding on its south barricade, and ran 3000 feet in length along the shoreline of Cinnamon Bay. The Durloo property had been previously taken up in 1722 by William Gandy2 [SJLL, 1728], an Englishman and master builder by trade [PCR, 1723]. Gandy had lived on his waterfront holding with his wife, Elizabeth, and her two daughters, Anna Maria and Rachel Mauor [STBP, 1724-32]. Given his abilities as a builder one would assume that the structures Gandy erected on his property were soundly constructed and well finished. Experienced in the construction of packhouses on St. Thomas, it might well be that the warehouse, which still stands on the Cinnamon Bay waterfront today, comprises at least elements of Gandy's handiwork. It is also possible that even after taking up a plantagie Gandy had continued to practice his trade, and he may have been responsible for overseeing the construction of the original structures on the nearby Jansen sugar plantagie.

Figure 2: A bay side cotton plantagie of the early eighteenth century

The physical infrastructure of a cotton plantagie was sparse in comparison to a property engaged in sugar production, the only necessary structures being a shed, where the ginning and baling of the cotton took place, a dry weatherproof storage building, a residence with its associated cook house and bake oven, and shelters for the workers (see figure 2). Labor requirements were also comparatively low, and no more than ten slaves were ever noted as working the Gandy plantagie before it was purchased by Peter Durloo in 1728 [SJLL, 1729]. It is likely, therefore, that only three or four wattle and daub structures comprised the entire workers village on the site during this period.

Unlike William Gandy, Peter Durloo did not live on his Cinnamon Bay plantagie, and as early as 1729 the property may have already been integrated with the Jansen holding. In fact, records suggest that Durloo only financed the acquisition of the parcel for the already heavily indebted Jansen heirs. In any event, the purchase of the waterfront Gandy plantagie by the husband of Daniel Jansen's eldest daughter, not only increased the amount of land available to the Jansen family for cultivation, but also secured them unencumbered access to the shoreline for the export of their products and the import of materials and supplies [JP, 1745-49]. However, a formal merging of the two properties' operations was not reported until 1731, when land records show Daniel Jansen's widow, Adriana, in possession of both plantagies [SJLL, 1731]. And, although the former Gandy parcel continued to be recorded in the tax rolls as a cotton plantagie until 1739, it is evident that at least a portion of the property had long since been converted to sugarcane cultivation by that date [JP, 1745-49].

Further cementing the Jansen family's ties to the former Gandy plantagie was the marriage of Daniel and Adriana Jansen's son, Johannes, to William Gandy's stepdaughter, Rachel Mauor, in 1731 [STBP, 1723-32]. After their wedding, the couple took up residence on the property where they resided until Johannes' death ten years later [SJLL, 1732].

So it can be stated with assurance that while the industrial heart of the Jansen plantagie continued to be the property's active sugar works, by 1731 the buildings associated with the former Gandy/Durloo cotton plantagie had become integral elements of the recently expanded Jansen estate complex: a property worked at that time by a combined labor force of twenty-seven adult male and female slaves.

It is just an aside, but there is a poignant postscript to the story of William Gandy. After selling his plantagie to Peter Durloo in 1728, Gandy moved to his wife's inherited property on Lovango Cay, where it is said that soon after he was murdered in his sleep by his slaves [Martfeldt, c. 1765].

The St. John Slave Insurrection of 1733 and its Impact on the

Jansen Properties at Cinnamon Bay

By 1733, the Cinnamon Bay sugar plantagie, now run by the widowed Adriana Jansen with her two younger sons, Lieven and Johannes, and worked by fifty slaves, appears to have been going through a period of stable productivity. In the previous year more than eleven thousand pounds of sugar had been delivered to the Company warehouse on St. Thomas for credit to Madam Jansen's account [LD, 1730-32], and in early May another fourteen hogsheads of brown sugar and three barrels of kill-devil (rum) had been sent [STRB, 1730-37].

But this situation was soon to change. The spring of 1733 proved to be the driest in memory, and it was soon followed by a long and destructive summer hurricane season. As provisions became increasingly scarce, more and more slaves took to the secluded hills of St. John's well forested interior to escape the famine that had gripped the plantagies.

In October, word spread across the island that all of the enslaved from the Suhm property on the East End of St. John, as well as a number from the Company estate and other plantagies around the Coral Bay area, had gone maron. Despite all efforts to hunt them down, the runaways deftly avoided capture; their lurking presence serving only to heighten the already tense atmosphere in the colony. Then, at three o'clock on the morning of November 23, 1733, the first defiant acts of outright rebellion took place on the Coral Bay plantagie owned by Magistrate Johannes Sødtmann [Pannet, 1733 (trans. Caron & Highfield, 1984)].

The well documented 1733 slave insurrection on St. John, proved to be one of the longest and most costly uprisings in the history of the West Indies colonies. After gaining control of the Danish fort in Coral Bay, the rebels swept across the island plundering the plantagies and killing any white inhabitant they encountered. But not all of the slaves were drawn into the plot. Many fled along with their masters or escaped into hiding to avoid confrontation. Some even stood their ground against the onslaught, protecting both their homes and the planters' properties. Such was the case at the Jansen plantagie, where it was reported that when the insurgents arrived to enlist Madam Jansen's laborers into their group, "these Negroes, who had armed themselves defensively, received the rebels with indescribable courage [Pannet, 1733]." They were not, however, able to protect the property's dwelling house, storage building, and boiling house from being looted and burned, nor could they prevent the Jansen cane fields from being set ablaze [BD, 1734]. As for Madam Jansen and her family, Adriana was on St. Thomas when the revolt broke out and thereby avoided being caught up in the fray, but it was later reported that her sons Johannes and Lieven, along with their families, had narrowly escaped death by concealing themselves on tiny Cinnamon Cay which lies only a few hundred feet off the beach at Cinnamon Bay [Martfeldt, c.1765].

For three months the rebels doggedly held St. John, continually laying siege upon a makeshift fortress the colonists had erected at Peter Durloo's Klein Caneel Bay plantagie. It was only after the Danes enlisted the help of French troops from Martinique that they were able to shake the Africans' resolve. Still, for months to come many of the rebels remained at large, and it was not until August 25, 1734, that the last fifteen stragglers were finally lured into surrender.

The de Buyck / Beaudewyn Property

The St. John slave revolt stunned the island's colonists and suppressed development on the plantagies for a number of years. Yet it was during this time period that the Jansen family again increased their land holdings. When the yearly tax accountings for St. John were resumed in 1736, Daniel and Adriana Jansen's eldest son, Jasper, was reported as the owner of a small coastal cotton plantagie directly west of the two Jansen properties occupied by his mother and younger brother, Johannes [SJLL, 1736] (see Map 1; parcel C, p.18).

The property that Jasper Jansen acquired had first been taken up by Pieter de Buyck in 1719. After de Buyck's death in 1728, it became the property of Abraham Beaudewyn, husband and legal guardian of de Buyck's widow [STBP, 1728]. Despite Pieter de Buyck's relatively short tenure of ownership, the bay which fronted his plantagie has continued to be known to this day by his name: Peter Bay -- as has Peter Peak, Peter Cay, and Peter Point [Edwards, 1993].

Neither de Buyck nor Beaudewyn ever lived on their Peter Bay property. Instead, they relied on hired masterknegts to oversee the day-to-day running of the plantagie [SJLL, 1728-33]. The least developed of the holdings which were joined to form the Cinnamon Bay estate, only three enslaved laborers, Piero, Janno, and Lena, had been on the plantagie at the time of de Buyck's death [STBP, 1728], and no more than six workers were ever reported on the property prior to Jasper Jansen's purchase [SJLL, 1736-39]. With such a small labor force it is apparent that only modest amounts of provisions, cotton, and some sugar (which was processed elsewhere) were being grown. Given the property's limited production, coupled with the fact that the owners were seldom, if ever, in residence, it is unlikely that the plantagie consisted of anything more than a simple field system, a baling and ginning shed, a storage building, one small dwelling for an overseer, animal pens, and a few shelters for the enslaved. It was reported in the tax records, however, that soon after Jasper Jansen's purchase an upgraded cotton works was erected on the property [SJLL, 1737-39].

Like their predecessors, Jasper Jansen and his wife Rebecca van Still did not live on their property, but neither were they recorded to have employed a masterknegt. Upon Jasper's death, in August of 1737, Rebecca became the recorded owner of the Peter Bay plantagie. It is of interest to note that in the three years following Jasper Jansen's death, one Mulatto woman was reported as the only free person in residence on the property, while as many as eleven enslaved men, women, and children, still labored on its ground [SJLL, 1737-39].

By all appearances it would seem that while the Jansen, Gandy/Durloo, and de Buyck/Beaudewyn properties remained listed in the St. John tax records as separate parcels throughout the first half of the eighteenth century, by the late 1730s all three were already being run as a single Jansen family holding. And while the administrative core of this broadly diversified operation was undoubtedly the original Daniel Jansen plantagie, the extended Jansen family took full advantage of all the resources and infrastructures associated with each of the properties they had acquired. As a result, during this time period the activities on the Cinnamon Bay land holdings were still relatively non-centralized, and population dispersal over the broad area of their lands was most likely at its peak.

The First Recorded Inventory of the Jansen Family's Cinnamon Bay Property

Some years before the death of Madam Adriana Jansen, members of the family had begun to be concerned that the aging matriarch might "distribute the estate to the disadvantage of the heirs." To aid in a proper evaluation of the Jansen sugar plantagie, in 1738 Peter Durloo and Lieven Jansen requested that a formal appraisal of the combined Jansen and Gandy/Durloo properties be carried out. While it is unfortunate that the standing structures on the parcels were not itemized in the appraisal inventory, the following extract provides not only our first detailed look at conditions on the Jansen's Cinnamon Bay property, but also offers a rare glimpse at the composition of a Danish colonial sugar plantagie during the pre-consolidation era (for a copy of the original inventory see Appendix III, document 1):

bullet...a plantation located on the Northside in Caneel Bay. The length of 3000 feet runs from Joachim Delicat's plantation to the barricade of Willem Vessuup, and the breadth of 2000 feet runs from the plantation of the widow of Vlack to the plantation of William Gandy. To make this plantation more complete the piece of land has been acquired from the late William Gandy. The widow was not able to supply with any information about the length and breadth [of the said piece of land], [but she told] that both plots were cultivated by all her slaves.
bulletBy means of the following evidence and the more definite information of the land-letter the plantation and the buildings etc. is estimated at 4000 Rd.3
bullet 
bulletSlaves, Negro-men
bullet 
bulletThomas, a bomba and sugar-boiler ........... 250
bullet 
bulletCupido, a sugar-boiler ................................ 250
bullet 
bulletFrancie, a cooper ........................................ 250
bullet 
bulletCongo, a cooper .......................................... 250
bullet 
bulletFrancies, a cooper ....................................... 225
bullet 
bulletGedanda ...................................................... 220
bullet 
bulletKicko or Fransischo, a carpenter ................ 100
bullet 
bulletJan ............................................................... 180
bullet 
bulletSimon .......................................................... 180
bullet 
bulletToni .............................................................. 150
bullet 
bulletTitis .............................................................. 180
bullet 
bulletScipio, an old one ......................................... 50
bullet 
bulletQuamina ....................................................... 150
bullet 
bulletJan Broer ...................................................... 160
bullet 
bulletJantje ............................................................ 150
bullet 
bulletPowel ........................................................... 150
bullet 
bulletTromp .......................................................... 125
bullet 
bulletMawinga ...................................................... 110
bullet 
bulletPowel, an old one ........................................ 50
bullet 
bulletAndreas, an old one ..................................... 40
bullet 
bulletJochum, an old one ...................................... 90
bullet
bullet 
bulletNegro-women
bullet 
bulletMartha, a domestic slave ............................. 180
bullet 
bulletAnna, a washerwoman ................................. 200
bullet 
bulletMariana ........................................................ 160
bullet 
bulletRosie ............................................................ 75
bullet 
bulletDaal .............................................................. 160
bullet 
bulletSerrina, an old one ....................................... 50
bullet 
bulletSerrina, a young one .................................... 130
bullet 
bulletGresie ........................................................... 130
bullet 
bulletAnna Maria .................................................. 160
bullet 
bulletLeena ........................................................... 160
bullet 
bulletMaritje ......................................................... 160
bullet 
bulletSnartje, with a child ..................................... 130
bullet 
bulletKattitta, old and worn out ............................ 4
bullet 
bulletSebella .......................................................... 150
bullet 
bulletFena, an old one ........................................... 10
bullet
bullet 
bulletNegro boys
bullet 
bulletDieter, a Negro boy ..................................... 130
bullet 
bulletHaving asked if there were no more slaves belonging to the estate to value, it was answered that some were at Mr. Durloo's. They were procured and valued:
bullet
bullet 
bulletNegro-men
bullet 
bulletJantje Lamaer ............................................... 150
bullet 
bulletNegro boys
bullet 
bulletManuel ......................................................... 120
bullet 
bulletWanu ............................................................ 120
bullet
bullet 
bulletSundries
bullet 
bulletJack, another carpenter ................................ 300
bullet 
bulletOranie, who is valued in the estate of Jasper
bullet 
bulletJansen is belonging to this plantation .......... 160
bullet
bullet 
bulletBeasts
bullet 
bulletA red stallion ................................................ 30
bullet 
bulletAnother one .................................................. 20
bullet 
bulletA red mare .................................................... 30
bullet 
bullet2 mules, each of 65 rd. ................................ 130
bullet 
bullet2 old "bouriquers", each of 10 rd. ............... 20
bullet 
bullet1 bourrique stallion ..................................... 20
bullet 
bullet1 bourrique mare ......................................... 18
bullet 
bullet1 bullock ...................................................... 40
bullet 
bulletA red milk-cow ............................................ 25
bullet 
bulletA black milk-cow ........................................ 25
bullet 
bulletA young heifer ............................................ 14
bullet 
bulletAnother young heifer .................................. 12
bullet 
bulletA young bull ............................................... 16
bullet 
bullet2 sucking calves, each of 5 rd. .................. 10
bullet
bullet 
bulletDomestic utensils
bullet 
bullet5 old silver spoons, about 32 ounces, and
bullet 
bullet8 old silver forks, about 32 ounces, and
bullet 
bullet6 wooden forks ......................................... 32
bullet 
bullet6 silver plated [?] each of 20 real .............. 15
bullet 
bullet6 old dishes of pewter, and
bullet 
bullet2 ditto, all together .................................... 6
bullet 
bullet3 ditto new ones ........................................ 3
bullet 
bullet6 new plates .............................................. 2.3
bullet 
bullet7 old ditto .................................................. 2
bullet 
bullet1 pot of pewter for wooden spoons .......... 1
bullet 
bullet1 coffeepot ................................................ 3
bullet 
bullet1 smaller ditto ........................................... 1
bullet 
bullet1 candlestick of brass ................................ 2
bullet 
bullet1 old ditto .................................................. 0.3
bullet 
bullet1 mortar of metal ....................................... 3
bullet 
bullet6 old knives, and
bullet 
bullet6 old forks, all together ............................. 2.1.8
bullet 
bullet1 iron balance with 2 brass scales ............ 2.3
bullet 
bullet1 tea kettle ................................................ 2
bullet 
bullet1 table and 6 old chairs ........................... 8
bullet 
bullet1 basin [or pitcher ] with a bench ............. 0.3
bullet 
bullet1 old pine chest of drawers with no cover 0.3
bullet 
bullet1 dozen of tea cups,
bullet 
bullet1 tea pot, and
bullet 
bullet1 wash basin, all together ........................ 2.3
bullet 
bullet1 pie pan ................................................... 4
bullet 
bullet1 piece of iron for sharpening ................. 1
bullet 
bullet1 frying pan and an old pan ...................... 1
bullet 
bullet2 iron pots .... ........................................... 2.3
bullet 
bullet1 old iron ................................................... 0.2
bullet 
bullet2 old box containing some clay bottles .... 2
bullet 
bullet1 Ameranth four-poster with bedding ....... 30
bullet 
bullet4 tablecloths and 1 dozen of old napkins .. 3
bullet
bullet 
bulletThe widow was asked once again, if there was nothing more to value, or if something was missing that might be in favor of the heirs. The widow answered, that there was in a house in the town on St. Thomas, a brown wardrobe, and a silver pot, and nothing further to her knowledge.
bullet
bullet 
bulletAll together ..................................... 10702. 8. 0 Pcs 4
bullet 
bullet[JP, Jansen vs. Durloo, 1745-49]

The Formal Consolidation of the Jansen, Durloo / Gandy

and De Buyck / Beaudewyn Properties

No St. John tax records have survived for the period 1740 to 1754, making it difficult to track ownership and property development throughout those years. It is unfortunate that this is precisely when formal consolidation of the Cinnamon Bay plantation took place. However, it has been possible to piece together enough information from other sources to gain a general understanding of how this final merging of properties came about.

Jasper Jansen died in 1737, leaving his wife, Rebecca van Still, and two sons, Gabriel and Daniel, as the heirs to not only his Peter Bay plantagie, but major shares in the other Jansen family properties as well [JP, 1745-49]. Madam Adriana Jansen died four years later in 1741, as did her youngest son, Johannes. With the deaths of Adriana, Johannes, and Jasper Jansen, Jasper's still underage sons came in line to inherit controlling interests in all of the Jansen family's Cinnamon Bay properties as the sole natural male heirs of Daniel and Adriana's oldest son. As a result, when Jasper's widow, Rebecca van Still, remarried to an English emigrant named John Hobby, it was Hobby who gained possession of the Jansen family holdings as guardian for his wife and stepsons: a situation which did not sit well with some of the other Daniel Jansen heirs [JP, 1745-49].

Not long after Adriana Jansen's death, Peter Durloo, husband of the oldest of the two Jansen daughters, Elisabeth, filed formal claim in the colony's courts for a more equitable distribution of the Jansen estate: a case that would eventually go all the way to the Danish high court in Copenhagen. After the death of Daniel and Adriana's second oldest son, Lieven, in 1751, what had developed into an all-out battle over the Jansen inheritance was carried to new heights when Durloo filed yet another suit against the estate [JP, Friis vs. Jansen, 1750-55].

It comes as no surprise that a resolution to the issues surrounding the rightful inheritance of the Cinnamon Bay properties became so bogged down in the courts. By Adriana's death the Jansen family was well proliferated, and many of the claims against the heirs' estate were long standing. With little or no unencumbered equity in their holding, no one wanted to be saddled with the responsibility of servicing the property's debt without the security of title: a privilege which could not be gained as long as Rebecca van Still and John Hobby managed to hold possession of the plantagies. So, as the Jansen family squabbled amongst themselves, it would appear that Rebecca simply held her ground. But, as time wore on, whatever value the heirs might have been able to salvage from their estate at the time of Madam Jansen's death rapidly diminished to a negative balance.

John Hobby and Rebecca van Still continued to commit considerable sums to the further development of their newly unified Cinnamon Bay holdings. During the early years of their tenure, the number of enslaved laborers on the property rose from forty-four in 1739, to sixty-five in 1755 [SJLL, 1739; SJA, 1755] (see Appendix II, Table A). This increase in manpower was most likely utilized to expand the number of acres under sugar cane cultivation, as well as to upgrade, maintain, and man the property's sugar works to meet the demands of the corresponding escalation in the estate's volume of production. It is also probable that some repairs and modifications to the estate's main residence and associated outbuildings -- warehouse, stable, cook house, etc. -- were carried out during this time period.

Summary of the Era of Consolidation, 1718 - 1755

In closing the chapter on the Jansen family's participation in the development of the Cinnamon Bay estate, it is important to point out that the pattern of property consolidation was far from unusual in the Danish colony throughout the first half of the eighteenth century. In fact, it was a recurrent pattern which resulted in the gradual emergence of the islands' large and diversified plantation estates -- the boundaries and names of which we relate to until this day as our primary geographical context. Along with this pattern of development, came the centralization of the estates' activities to better manage production and control the enslaved labor force. The gradual dismantling and eventual abandonment of the small independent holdings which lay within the bounds of the newly consolidated estates, completed St. John's conversion from a colonial system based on struggling low output plantagies, to one of large scale diversified plantations with well developed nuclear residential and industrial complexes.

CLEARLY IN PERIL !

During a two day exploratory survey performed in June of 1999, an archaeological team from Syracuse University, under the direction of Professor Douglas V. Armstrong, identified what may prove to be one of the earliest colonial period structures on the Cinnamon Bay property. This building, which was possibly an element of the William Gandy cotton plantagie, is in imminent peril of being lost to the coastal erosion which is effecting the study area.

1 Daniel Jansen could the son of Adriana Delicat from her first marriage to an unknown individual (Henry B. Hoff, F.A.F.G. and The Rev. F. Kenneth Barta, "De Windt Families of the West Indies, Descendants of Lieven De Windt of St. Thomas", The Genealogist, Vol. 10, #2 [Utah, Association for the Promotion of Scholarship in Genealogy, Ltd., 1998]). However, in the 1688 St. Thomas census the nine year old Daniel Jansen's surname was spelled Johnsen, suggesting that he had been named in the standard patronymic fashion of the era in which a child's surname was taken from his father's first name (e.g. Johan's-son). Over a period of time the name Johnsen seems simply to have been transliterated in the Danish colony into Jansen.

2 There is reason to believe that the Gandy / Durloo site, which today is in immediate peril of being lost to seasonal beach erosion, was once the scene of an earlier European settlement at Cinnamon Bay. While further archival investigations into the backgrounds of the Gandy, Hatch, Durloo and Delecat families may well link one or more of them to pre-Danish settlers in the Virgin Islands, only a thorough archaeological survey will conclusively reveal the date of the earliest European attempt to occupy the area.

3 Rd.= Rigsdalers: a unit of Danish currency made up of ninety-six Skillings.

4 The unit of currency used at the end of the Jansen inventory was abbreviated as "Pcs.", which most likely stood for Pieces, or Pieces of Eight. Due to its high quality and stable evaluation, Spanish silver was a widely accepted common currency throughout this era.