The Saba Islander

by Will Johnson

The Dinzey’s on St. Barth’s

Recently when doing research on their great grandfather Capt. Charles Barnes of Saba who moved to St. Barth’s, a box of old documents relating to the Dinzey family was found. The last Dinzey on St. Barth’s Julia willed her house to Capt. Barnes who had befriended her in her last years. Her father Sir Richard Dinzey son of Governor Thomas Dinzey of Saba played along with other Sabans a prominent role on St. Barth’s during the time that the island belonged to Sweden.
The Sabans there were the largest slave owners on that island it turns out in documents which I recently had access to via Raymond Simmons.
I will come back in detail on more of the history of the Dinzey’s even though I have carried in the past an article in my column “Under The Sea Grape Tree.”
This small document was among the Dinzey papers which I am going through via Mr. Montoya who is married to one of Capt. Barnes’s great granddaughters.
The document reads as follows:
” We the undersigned Burgers and Inhabitants of the island of St. Eustatius hereby certify and declare that this island was taken in possession by his Britannic Majesty’s forces in the month of April 1801 and held by them until the month of November 1802 when in consequence of the treaty of peace ratified at Amiens it was restored to the Dutch government.
Thus certified and declared at St. Eustatius this 29th October 1850.”
signed: Sarah Waag, A.S. Mussenden, G.C. Lespier
This document does not say so but the British reoccupied St. Eustatius later on and kept it until 1816 after which the island remained permanently Dutch.
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