Sir Noël Peirce Coward was an English playwright, director and singer, known for his wit and what Time magazine called "a sense of personal style, a combination of cheek and chic and poise". Coward attended a dance academy in London as a child, making his professional stage début at the age of eleven; as a teenager he was introduced into the high society. Coward achieved enduring success as a playwright, publishing more than 50 plays from his teens onwards. Many of his works, such as Hay Fever, Private Lives, Design for Living, Present Laughter and Blithe Spirit, have remained in the regular theatre repertoire, he composed hundreds of songs, in addition to well over a dozen musical theatre works, poetry, several volumes of short stories, the novel Pomp and Circumstance, a three-volume autobiography. Coward's stage and film acting and directing career spanned six decades, during which he starred in many of his own works. At the outbreak of the Second World War Coward volunteered for war work, running the British propaganda office in Paris.
He worked with the Secret Service, seeking to use his influence to persuade the American public and government to help Britain. Coward won an Academy Honorary Award in 1943 for his naval film drama, In Which We Serve, was knighted in 1969. In the 1950s he achieved fresh success as a cabaret performer, performing his own songs, such as "Mad Dogs and Englishmen", "London Pride" and "I Went to a Marvellous Party". Coward's plays and songs achieved new popularity in the 1960s and 1970s, his work and style continue to influence popular culture, he did not publicly acknowledge his homosexuality, but it was discussed candidly after his death by biographers including Graham Payn, his long-time partner, in Coward's diaries and letters, published posthumously. The former Albery Theatre in London was renamed the Noël Coward Theatre in his honour in 2006. Coward was born in 1899 in a south-western suburb of London, his parents were Arthur Sabin Coward, a piano salesman, Violet Agnes Coward, daughter of Henry Gordon Veitch, a captain and surveyor in the Royal Navy.
Violet's cousin, Rachel Veitch, was mother of Field-Marshal Douglas Haig. Noël Coward was the second of their three sons, the eldest of whom had died in 1898 at the age of six. Coward's father lacked ambition and industry, family finances were poor. Coward appeared in amateur concerts by the age of seven, he attended the Chapel Royal Choir School as a young child. He was a voracious reader. Encouraged by his ambitious mother, who sent him to a dance academy in London, Coward's first professional engagement was in January 1911 as Prince Mussel in the children's play The Goldfish. In Present Indicative, his first volume of memoirs, Coward wrote: One day... a little advertisement appeared in the Daily Mirror.... It stated that a talented boy of attractive appearance was required by a Miss Lila Field to appear in her production of an all-children fairy play: The Goldfish; this seemed to dispose of all argument. I was a talented boy, God knows, when washed and smarmed down a bit, passably attractive.
There appeared to be no earthly reason why Miss Lila Field shouldn't jump at me, we both believed that she would be a fool indeed to miss such a magnificent opportunity. The leading actor-manager Charles Hawtrey, whom the young Coward idolised and from whom he learned a great deal about the theatre, cast him in the children's play Where the Rainbow Ends. Coward played in the piece in 1912 at the Garrick Theatre in London's West End. In 1912 Coward appeared at the Savoy Theatre in An Autumn Idyll and at the London Coliseum in A Little Fowl Play, by Harold Owen, in which Hawtrey starred. Italia Conti engaged Coward to appear at the Liverpool Repertory Theatre in 1913, in the same year he was cast as the Lost Boy Slightly in Peter Pan, he reappeared in Peter Pan the following year, in 1915 he was again in Where the Rainbow Ends. He worked with other child actors including Hermione Gingold. In 1914, when Coward was fourteen, he became the protégé and the lover of Philip Streatfeild, a society painter.
Streatfeild introduced him to her high society friends. Streatfeild died from tuberculosis in 1915, but Mrs Astley Cooper continued to encourage her late friend's protégé, who remained a frequent guest at her estate, Hambleton Hall. Coward continued to perform during most of the First World War, appearing at the Prince of Wales's Theatre in 1916 in The Happy Family and on tour with Amy Brandon Thomas's company in Charley's Aunt. In 1917, he appeared in a comedy produced by Hawtrey. Coward recalled in his memoirs, "My part was reasonably large and I was quite good in it, owing to the kindness and care of Hawtrey's direction, he took endless trouble with me... and taught me during those two short weeks many technical points of comedy acting which I use to this day."In 1918, Coward was conscripted into the Artists Rifles but was assessed as unfit for active service because of a tubercular tendency, he was discharged on health grounds after nine months. That year he appeared in the D W Griffith film Heart
William James "Count" Basie was an American jazz pianist, organist and composer. In 1935, Basie formed his own jazz orchestra, the Count Basie Orchestra, in 1936 took them to Chicago for a long engagement and their first recording, he led the group for 50 years, creating innovations like the use of two "split" tenor saxophones, emphasizing the rhythm section, riffing with a big band, using arrangers to broaden their sound, others. Many musicians came to prominence under his direction, including the tenor saxophonists Lester Young and Herschel Evans, the guitarist Freddie Green, trumpeters Buck Clayton and Harry "Sweets" Edison and singers Jimmy Rushing, Helen Humes, Thelma Carpenter, Joe Williams. William Basie was born to Harvey Lee Basie in Red Bank, New Jersey, his father worked as a caretaker for a wealthy judge. After automobiles replaced horses, his father became a groundskeeper and handyman for several wealthy families in the area. Both of his parents had some type of musical background.
His father played the mellophone, his mother played the piano. She took in laundry and baked cakes for sale for a living, she paid 25 cents a lesson for Count Basie's piano instruction. Not much of a student in school, Basie dreamed of a traveling life, inspired by touring carnivals which came to town, he finished junior high school but spent much of his time at the Palace Theater in Red Bank, where doing occasional chores gained him free admission to performances. He learned to improvise music appropriate to the acts and the silent movies. Though a natural at the piano, Basie preferred drums. Discouraged by the obvious talents of Sonny Greer, who lived in Red Bank and became Duke Ellington's drummer in 1919, Basie at age 15 switched to piano exclusively. Greer and Basie played together in venues. By Basie was playing with pick-up groups for dances and amateur shows, including Harry Richardson's "Kings of Syncopation"; when not playing a gig, he hung out at the local pool hall with other musicians, where he picked up on upcoming play dates and gossip.
He got some jobs in Asbury Park at the Jersey Shore, played at the Hong Kong Inn until a better player took his place. Around 1920, Basie went to Harlem, a hotbed of jazz, where he lived down the block from the Alhambra Theater. Early after his arrival, he bumped into Sonny Greer, by the drummer for the Washingtonians, Duke Ellington's early band. Soon, Basie met many of the Harlem musicians who were "making the scene," including Willie "the Lion" Smith and James P. Johnson. Basie toured in several acts between 1925 and 1927, including Katie Krippen and Her Kiddies as part of the Hippity Hop show, his touring took him to Kansas City, St. Louis, New Orleans, Chicago. Throughout his tours, Basie met many jazz musicians, including Louis Armstrong. Before he was 20 years old, he toured extensively on the Keith and TOBA vaudeville circuits as a solo pianist and music director for blues singers and comedians; this provided an early training, to prove significant in his career. Back in Harlem in 1925, Basie gained his first steady job at Leroy's, a place known for its piano players and its "cutting contests."
The place catered to "uptown celebrities," and the band winged every number without sheet music using "head arrangements." He met Fats Waller, playing organ at the Lincoln Theater accompanying silent movies, Waller taught him how to play that instrument.. As he did with Duke Ellington, Willie "the Lion" Smith helped Basie out during the lean times by arranging gigs at "house-rent parties," introducing him to other leading musicians, teaching him some piano technique. In 1928, Basie was in Tulsa and heard Walter Page and his Famous Blue Devils, one of the first big bands, which featured Jimmy Rushing on vocals. A few months he was invited to join the band, which played in Texas and Oklahoma, it was at this time. The following year, in 1929, Basie became the pianist with the Bennie Moten band based in Kansas City, inspired by Moten's ambition to raise his band to the level of Duke Ellington's or Fletcher Henderson's. Where the Blue Devils were "snappier" and more "bluesy," the Moten band was more refined and respected, playing in the "Kansas City stomp" style.
In addition to playing piano, Basie was co-arranger with Eddie Durham. Their "Moten Swing", which Basie claimed credit for, was acclaimed and was an invaluable contribution to the development of swing music, at one performance at the Pearl Theatre in Philadelphia in December 1932, the theatre opened its door to allow anybody in who wanted to hear the band perform. During a stay in Chicago, Basie recorded with the band, he played four-hand piano and dual pianos with Moten, who conducted. The band improved with several personnel changes, including the addition of tenor saxophonist Ben Webster; when the band voted Moten out, Basie took over for several months, calling the group "Count Basie and his Cherry Blossoms." When his own band folded, he rejoined Moten with a newly re-organized band. A year Basie joined Bennie Moten's band, played with them until Moten's death in 1935 from a failed tonsillectomy; when Moten died, the band tried to stay together but couldn't make a go of it
Sir George Albert Shearing, OBE was a British jazz pianist who for many years led a popular jazz group that recorded for Discovery Records, MGM Records and Capitol Records. The composer of over 300 titles, including the jazz standards "Lullaby of Birdland" and "Conception", had multiple albums on the Billboard charts during the 1950s, 1960s, 1980s and 1990s, he died of heart failure in New York City, at the age of 91. Born in Battersea, Shearing was the youngest of nine children, he was born blind to working class parents: his father delivered coal and his mother cleaned trains in the evening. He started to learn piano at the age of three and began formal training at Linden Lodge School for the Blind, where he spent four years. Though he was offered several scholarships, Shearing opted to perform at a local pub, the Mason's Arms in Lambeth, for "25 bob a week" playing piano and accordion, he joined an all-blind band during that time and was influenced by the records of Teddy Wilson and Fats Waller.
Shearing made his first BBC radio broadcast during this time after befriending Leonard Feather, with whom he started recording in 1937. In 1940, Shearing joined Harry Parry's popular band and contributed to the comeback of Stéphane Grappelli. Shearing won six consecutive Top Pianist Melody Maker polls during this time. Around that time he was a member of George Evans's Saxes'n' Sevens band. In 1947, Shearing emigrated to the United States, where his harmonically complex style mixing swing and modern classical influences gained popularity. One of his first performances was at the Hickory House, he performed with the Oscar Pettiford Trio and led a jazz quartet with Buddy DeFranco, which led to contractual problems, since Shearing was under contract to MGM and DeFranco to Capitol Records. In 1949, he formed the first George Shearing Quintet, a band with Margie Hyams, Chuck Wayne replaced by Toots Thielemans, John Levy, Denzil Best; this line-up recorded for Discovery, MGM, including the immensely popular single "September in the Rain", which sold over 900,000 copies.
Shearing said of this hit that it was "as accidental as it could be."Shearing's interest in classical music resulted in some performances with concert orchestras in the 1950s and 1960s, his solos drew upon the music of Satie and Debussy for inspiration. He became known for a piano technique known as "The Shearing Sound", a type of double melody block chord, with an additional fifth part that doubles the melody an octave lower. With the piano playing these five voices, Shearing would double the top voice with the vibraphone and the bottom voice with the guitar to create his signature sound. In 1956, Shearing became a naturalized citizen of the United States, he continued to play with his quintet, with augmented players through the years, recorded with Capitol until 1969. He created his own label, that lasted a few years. Along with dozens of musical stars of his day, Shearing appeared on ABC's The Pat Boone Chevy Showroom. Earlier, he had appeared on the same network's reality show, The Comeback Story, in which he discussed how to cope with blindness.
In 1970, he began to "phase out his by-now-predictable quintet" and disbanded the group in 1978. One of his more notable albums during this period was The Reunion, with George Shearing, made in collaboration with bassist Andy Simpkins and drummer Rusty Jones, featuring Stéphane Grappelli, the musician with whom he had debuted as a sideman decades before. Shearing played in a trio, as a soloist, in a duo. Among his collaborations were sets with the Montgomery Brothers, Marian McPartland, Brian Q. Torff, Jim Hall, Hank Jones, Niels-Henning Ørsted Pedersen and Kenny Davern. In 1979, Shearing signed with Concord Records, recorded for the label with Mel Tormé; this collaboration garnered Shearing and Tormé two Grammys, one in 1983 and another in 1984. Shearing remained fit and active well into his years and continued to perform after being honoured with an Ivor Novello Lifetime Achievement Award in 1993, he never forgot his native country and, in his last years, would split his year between living in New York and Chipping Campden, where he bought a house with his second wife, singer Ellie Geffert.
This gave him the opportunity to tour the UK, giving concerts with Tormé, backed by the BBC Big Band. He was appointed OBE in 1996. In 2007, he was knighted. "So", he noted "the poor, blind kid from Battersea became Sir George Shearing. Now that's a fairy tale come true."He was the subject of This Is Your Life in 1992 when he was surprised by Michael Aspel. In 2004, he released his memoirs, Lullaby of Birdland, accompanied by a double-album "musical autobiography", Lullabies of Birdland. Shortly afterwards, however, he retired from regular performing. In 2012 Derek Paravicini and jazz vocalist Frank Holder did a tribute concert to the recordings of Shearing. Ann Odell transcribed the recordings and taught Paravicini the parts, as well as being the MD for the concerts. Lady Shearing endorsed the show, sending a letter to be read out before the Watermill Jazz Club performance. Shearing was married to Trixie Bayes from 1941 to 1973. Two years after his divorce he married the singer Ellie Geffert, who survived him.
Shearing was a member of the Bohemian Club and performed at the annual Bohemian Grove Encampments. He composed music for two of the Grove Plays. Performed for U. S. PresidentsGerald
Democratic Party (United States)
The Democratic Party is one of the two major contemporary political parties in the United States, along with the Republican Party. Tracing its heritage back to Thomas Jefferson and James Madison's Democratic-Republican Party, the modern-day Democratic Party was founded around 1828 by supporters of Andrew Jackson, making it the world's oldest active political party; the Democrats' dominant worldview was once social conservatism and economic liberalism, while populism was its leading characteristic in the rural South. In 1912, Theodore Roosevelt ran as a third-party candidate in the Progressive Party, beginning a switch of political platforms between the Democratic and Republican Party over the coming decades, leading to Woodrow Wilson being elected as the first fiscally progressive Democrat. Since Franklin D. Roosevelt and his New Deal coalition in the 1930s, the Democratic Party has promoted a social liberal platform, supporting social justice. Well into the 20th century, the party had conservative pro-business and Southern conservative-populist anti-business wings.
The New Deal Coalition of 1932–1964 attracted strong support from voters of recent European extraction—many of whom were Catholics based in the cities. After Franklin D. Roosevelt's New Deal of the 1930s, the pro-business wing withered outside the South. After the racial turmoil of the 1960s, most Southern whites and many Northern Catholics moved into the Republican Party at the presidential level; the once-powerful labor union element became less supportive after the 1970s. White Evangelicals and Southerners became Republican at the state and local level since the 1990s. People living in metropolitan areas, women and gender minorities, college graduates, racial and ethnic minorities in the United States, such as Jewish Americans, Hispanic Americans, Asian Americans, Arab Americans and African Americans, tend to support the Democratic Party much more than they support the rival Republican Party; the Democratic Party's philosophy of modern liberalism advocates social and economic equality, along with the welfare state.
It seeks to provide government regulation in the economy. These interventions, such as the introduction of social programs, support for labor unions, affordable college tuitions, moves toward universal health care and equal opportunity, consumer protection and environmental protection form the core of the party's economic policy. Fifteen Democrats have served as President of the United States; the first was President Andrew Jackson, the seventh president and served from 1829 to 1837. The most recent was President Barack Obama, the 44th president and held office from 2009 to 2017. Following the 2018 midterm elections, the Democrats held a majority in the House of Representatives, "trifectas" in 14 states, the mayoralty of numerous major American cities, such as Boston, Los Angeles, New York City, San Francisco, Portland and Washington, D. C. Twenty-three state governors were Democrats, the Party was the minority party in the Senate and in most state legislatures; as of March 2019, four of the nine Justices of the Supreme Court had been appointed by Democratic presidents.
Democratic Party officials trace its origins to the inspiration of the Democratic-Republican Party, founded by Thomas Jefferson, James Madison and other influential opponents of the Federalists in 1792. That party inspired the Whigs and modern Republicans. Organizationally, the modern Democratic Party arose in the 1830s with the election of Andrew Jackson. Since the nomination of William Jennings Bryan in 1896, the party has positioned itself to the left of the Republican Party on economic issues, they have been more liberal on civil rights issues since 1948. On foreign policy, both parties have changed position several times; the Democratic Party evolved from the Jeffersonian Republican or Democratic-Republican Party organized by Jefferson and Madison in opposition to the Federalist Party of Alexander Hamilton and John Adams. The party favored republicanism; the Democratic-Republican Party came to power in the election of 1800. After the War of 1812, the Federalists disappeared and the only national political party left was the Democratic-Republicans.
The era of one-party rule in the United States, known as the Era of Good Feelings, lasted from 1816 until the early 1830s, when the Whig Party became a national political group to rival the Democratic-Republicans. However, the Democratic-Republican Party still had its own internal factions, they split over the choice of a successor to President James Monroe and the party faction that supported many of the old Jeffersonian principles, led by Andrew Jackson and Martin Van Buren, became the modern Democratic Party. As Norton explains the transformation in 1828: Jacksonians believed the people's will had prevailed. Through a lavishly financed coalition of state parties, political leaders, newspaper editors, a popular movement had elected the president; the Democrats became the nation's first well-organized national party and tight party organization became the hallmark of nineteenth-century American politics. Opposing factions led by Henry Clay helped form the Whig Party; the Democratic Party had a small yet decisive advantage over the Whigs until the 1850s, when the Whigs fell apart over the issue of slavery.
In 1854, angry with the Kansas–Nebraska Act, anti-slavery Dem
Jack K. Pleis was an American jazz pianist, conductor and producer, he recorded on London and Decca Records in the 1950s, Columbia Records in the 1960s. During the course of his career, Pleis worked with many artists, including Louis Armstrong, Harry Belafonte, Bing Crosby, Sammy Davis Jr. Benny Goodman, Earl Grant, Brenda Lee, Joe Williams. Between 1950 and 1976, over 150 songs were arranged by Pleis, his surname is pronounced "Pleece". Jack Pleis was born in Philadelphia on May 11, 1917. Starting at age four, he began his training in classical piano, he first performed in concert. By the time he was eleven, he appeared on radio programs for children. Pleis enrolled in college intending to study medicine. To support his studies, he played piano in jazz and popular music bands, he left school and moved to New York City, where he began his musical career. In New York, Pleis became successful as a pianist, arranger and composer, he was one of Jan Savitt's Top Hatters, playing piano and doing arrangements, a position he left in 1942 to enlist in the Army during World War II.
In 1947, the Jack Pleis Trio provided instrumental support for Larry Laurence. By 1948, Pleis was working at the RCA Victor studios on 24th Street, appearing on the cover of the January 1, 1949 issue of Billboard playing piano at the studio's holiday party, his orchestra backed Teresa Brewer and Bobby Wayne on their 1949 single "Copper Canyon"/"'Way Back Home". Pleis was part of the Dixieland All-Stars group which backed Brewer's breakout hit Music! Music! Music! in late 1949. Pleis joined the American Society of Composers and Publishers in 1950, he began work as composer at London Records under Tutti Camarata. The orchestra backed Ralph Young on his 1950 London single "Please Treat Her Nicer"/"I've Got the World on a String", Pleis released his own single "Ragging the Scale"/"Story of the Stars", the B-side of which ranked at number 10 on "The Disk Jockeys Pick" in Billboard. In early May 1950, he accompanied his future wife, London recording artist Eve Young, on a promotional tour prior to her opening show.
Pleis released several more singles, "Time Alone"/"What is There to Say", "I'll Always Be in Love with You"/"Caravan", "Le Petite Valse"/"Ragamuffin", the orchestra backed Snooky Lanson on his 1950 London single "You Wonderful You"/"Honestly I Love You". In June 1950, Pleis married Eve Young, the March birth of their daughter Michelle was noted in an April 1951 Billboard; the Orchestra backed Eve on her single "Just for Tonight"/"Would I Love You?" In 1952, Pleis and orchestra continued working with Teresa Brewer. Pleis left London Records, Eve signed a new contract with Coral Records, recording under her new name, Karen Chandler, her debut for Coral, backed by Pleis' orchestra, was the song "Hold Me, Thrill Me, Kiss Me," and it became an enormous hit. Selling over a million copies, it peaked at No. 5 on the Billboard charts. In 1953, Pleis and orchestra backed her on her third Coral release, "I'd Love to Fall Asleep"/"Goodbye, Goodbye". In mid-1953 Pleis joined Decca Records under Milt Gabler.
Pleis and Orchestra released. The orchestra backed Karen Chandler again on "Why?"/"Flash From the Blue". 1954 saw the release of the orchestra's Decca singles, "Frenchman in St. Louis"/"Pagan in Paris", "Ah Ri Rung", "For Always"/"Beyond the Blue Horizon", the orchestra backed the Dinning Sisters on "Steel Guitar Rag", Eileen Barton on "And Then", Teresa Brewer on her album A Bouquet of Hits.1955 saw Pleis scheduled to be profiled in the April issue of The American Magazine. Pleis and His Orchestra began releasing singles of Disney film songs, released "Lies"/"Hey There" and "Pauline"/"The Trouble With Harry", the title tune for Alfred Hitchcock's film, The Trouble with Harry. In 1956, Pleis and His Orchestra again backed Karen Chandler, this time on her first Decca release, Pleis released another album and Things; the orchestra backed Bobby Darrin on his single "Rock Island Line"/"Timber". In October, Pleiss' song "Giant", theme of the film Giant, debuted on the Billboard Hot 100 at #93, peaking at #91 in December, the song "I'll Always Be In Love With You" charted at #65 in December.
Pleis produced Bing Crosby's album, Songs I Wish I Had Sung the First Time Around.1957 saw the release of singles " That's Life"/"Goodnight Waltz", "Search for Paradise"/"Serenade to Michelle", "The Carefree Heart"/"Serenade in Soft Shoe", the Orchestra backed Georgie Shaw on "One More Sunrise", Sammy Davis Jr. on "The Golden Key", Merv Griffin on "I'll Be Thinking of You". " That's Life" charted at #69 in June 1957. In 1958, the Orchestra backed Carmen McRae on her album Mad About the Man, as well as Toni Arden and backed The Four Aces on their album Swingin' Aces, he produced the Kalin Twins' song "When". In 1960, Pleis conducted for Valentino Tangos. Pleis and Orchestra backed Sammy Davis Jr. on a dozen tracks for Decca, including "What Kind of Fool Am I?", "The Lady Is a Tramp", "I Gotta Right to Sing the Blues", "Do Nothin' Till You Hear From Me", "I Got a Woman", "There Is No Greater Love", "Gee, Ain't I Good to You", "This Little Girl of Mine", "Till Then", "Mess Around". The 1960s brought a move to Columbia Records.
In 1961, Pleis and
Jamaica is an island country situated in the Caribbean Sea. Spanning 10,990 square kilometres in area, it is the third-largest island of the Greater Antilles and the fourth-largest island country in the Caribbean. Jamaica lies about 145 kilometres south of Cuba, 191 kilometres west of Hispaniola. Inhabited by the indigenous Arawak and Taíno peoples, the island came under Spanish rule following the arrival of Christopher Columbus in 1494. Many of the indigenous people died of disease, the Spanish transplanted African slaves to Jamaica as labourers; the island remained a possession of Spain until 1655, when England conquered it and renamed it Jamaica. Under British colonial rule Jamaica became a leading sugar exporter, with its plantation economy dependent on African slaves; the British emancipated all slaves in 1838, many freedmen chose to have subsistence farms rather than to work on plantations. Beginning in the 1840s, the British utilized Chinese and Indian indentured labour to work on plantations.
The island achieved independence from the United Kingdom on 6 August 1962. With 2.9 million people, Jamaica is the third-most populous Anglophone country in the Americas, the fourth-most populous country in the Caribbean. Kingston is the country's capital and largest city, with a population of 937,700. Jamaicans have African ancestry, with significant European, Indian and mixed-race minorities. Due to a high rate of emigration for work since the 1960s, Jamaica has a large diaspora in Canada, the United Kingdom, the United States. Jamaica is an upper-middle income country with an average of 4.3 million tourists a year. Jamaica is a Commonwealth realm, with Elizabeth II as its queen, her appointed representative in the country is the Governor-General of Jamaica, an office held by Sir Patrick Allen since 2009. Andrew Holness has served as Prime Minister of Jamaica since March 2016. Jamaica is a parliamentary constitutional monarchy with legislative power vested in the bicameral Parliament of Jamaica, consisting of an appointed Senate and a directly elected House of Representatives.
The indigenous people, the Taíno, called the island Xaymaca in Arawakan, meaning the "Land of Wood and Water" or the "Land of Springs". Colloquially Jamaicans refer to their home island as the "Rock." Slang names such as "Jamrock", "Jamdown", or "Ja", have derived from this. The Arawak and Taíno indigenous people, originating in South America, first settled on the island between 4000 and 1000 BC; when Christopher Columbus arrived in 1494, there were more than 200 villages ruled by caciques. The south coast of Jamaica was the most populated around the area now known as Old Harbour; the Taino still inhabited Jamaica when the English took control of the island in 1655. The Jamaican National Heritage Trust is attempting to locate and document any evidence of the Taino/yamaye. Today, few Jamaican natives remain. Most notably among some Maroon communities as well as within some communities in Cornwall County, Jamaica Christopher Columbus claimed Jamaica for Spain after landing there in 1494, his probable landing point was Dry Harbour, called Discovery Bay, St. Ann's Bay was named "Saint Gloria" by Columbus, as the first sighting of the land.
One and a half kilometres west of St. Ann's Bay is the site of the first Spanish settlement on the island, established in 1509 and abandoned around 1524 because it was deemed unhealthy; the capital was moved to Spanish Town called St. Jago de la Vega, around 1534. Spanish Town has the oldest cathedral of the British colonies in the Caribbean; the Spanish were forcibly evicted by the English at Ocho Rios in St. Ann. In the 1655 Invasion of Jamaica, the English, led by Sir William Penn and General Robert Venables, took over the last Spanish fort on the island; the name of Montego Bay, the capital of the parish of St. James, was derived from the Spanish name manteca bahía, alluding to the lard-making industry based on processing the numerous boars in the area. In 1660, the population of Jamaica was about 4,500 1,500 black. By the early 1670s, as the English developed sugar cane plantations and "imported" more slaves, black people formed a majority of the population; the colony was shaken and destroyed by the 1692 Jamaica earthquake.
The Irish in Jamaica formed a large part of the island's early population, making up two-thirds of the white population on the island in the late 17th century, twice that of the English population. They were brought in as indentured labourers and soldiers after the conquest of Jamaica by Cromwell's forces in 1655; the majority of Irish were transported by force as political prisoners of war from Ireland as a result of the ongoing Wars of the Three Kingdoms at the time. Migration of large numbers of Irish to the island continued into the 18th century. Jews were expelled from Spain in 1492 and forcibly converted to Christianity in Portugal, during a period of persecution by the Inquisition; some Spanish and Portuguese Jewish refugees went to the Netherlands and England, from there to Jamaica. Others were part of the Iberian colonisation of the New World, after overtly converting to Catholicism, as only Catholics were allowed in the Spanish colonies. By 1660, Jamaica had become a refuge for Jews in the New World attracting those, expelled from Spain and Portugal.
An early group of Jews arrived in 1510, soon after the son of Christopher Columbus settled on the island. Working as merchants and traders, the