in

What Kingston, Jamaica looked like in the Late 19th Century

Kingston is the capital and largest city of Jamaica. Kingston was founded in July 1693 after the earthquake devastated Port Royal in 1692. The original part of the city was built to house survivors of the earthquake at the bottom of the Liguanea Plains. The city took over the functions of Spanish Town (the capital at the time). The city was a commerce, processing, and transportation hub between Jamaica and other areas. Kingston had a population of 25,000 in 1788, which was about a tenth of the island’s population. The majority of people living in Kingston were white, and there were also many free people of color living there, so two out of every five people who lived there were free. The harbor played a keen role in developing the city and economy. The city had over 3,000 brick buildings by the end of the 18th Century.

In 1862, Kingston was incorporated as a corporation with a mayor and council. During that year, a large part of the city was destroyed by fire. Kingston became the new capital in 1872 since the port city had surpassed Spanish Town in size and sophistication. The city council’s powers were transferred to a nominated Municipal Board in 1885, but by then, the city’s affairs were again administered by a mayor.

Here are some stunning historical photos showing what Kingston looked like in the 19th Century.

#1 Kingston – looking east, 1891

Kingston - looking east, 1891

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#2 Harbour Street, Kingston, 1899

Harbour Street, Kingston, 1899

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#3 Kingston, 1899

Kingston, 1899

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#4 Rails laid down for mule-drawn trams stretch into the distance along a long, empty road at Kingston, 1895

Rails laid down for mule-drawn trams stretch into the distance along a long, empty road at Kingston, 1895

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#5 Building belonging to Jamaica Street Car Company, 1895

Building belonging to Jamaica Street Car Company, 1895

Close inspection finds the tram track turning into a building identified by a sign above its door that reads: 'Jamaica Street Car Co. Limited' at Kingston.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#6 Building belonging to Jamaica Street Car Company, 1895

Building belonging to Jamaica Street Car Company, 1895

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#7 Rails laid down for mule-drawn trams criss-cross a road bridge flanked by telegraph poles at Kingston, 1894

Rails laid down for mule-drawn trams criss-cross a road bridge flanked by telegraph poles at Kingston, 1894

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#8 Rails laid down for mule-drawn trams criss-cross a wide, empty road outside a building identified as: ‘Jamaica Street Car Co. Limited’ at Kingston, 1894

Rails laid down for mule-drawn trams criss-cross a wide, empty road outside a building identified as: 'Jamaica Street Car Co. Limited' at Kingston, 1894

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#9 Street scene showing a sign that reads: ‘Cars will not stop between North St. and Drummond St. on the up trip, 1894

Street scene showing a sign that reads: 'Cars will not stop between North St. and Drummond St. on the up trip, 1894

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#10 An open-sided tram is pulled along rails by two mules at Kingston, 1894

An open-sided tram is pulled along rails by two mules at Kingston, 1894

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#11 Rails laid down for mule-drawn trams criss-cross a busy road crowded with pedestrians and horse-drawn carts at Kingston, 1894

Rails laid down for mule-drawn trams criss-cross a busy road crowded with pedestrians and horse-drawn carts at Kingston, 1894

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#12 Myrtle Bank Gardens in Kingston, Jamaica, 1891.

Myrtle Bank Gardens in Kingston, Jamaica, 1891.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#13 King’s House (Sir Henry and Lady Blake) in Kingston, 1887

King's House (Sir Henry and Lady Blake) in Kingston, 1887

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#14 Ruins of an old Spanish fort, Kingston, Jamaica, 1891.

Ruins of an old Spanish fort, Kingston, Jamaica, 1891.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#15 Kingston – looking west, 1891

Kingston - looking west, 1891

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#16 Port Royal – looking to Kingston, 1891

Port Royal - looking to Kingston, 1891

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#17 Kingston harbour, 1891

Kingston harbour, 1891

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#18 General view of street in Kingston, 1870s

General view of street in Kingston, 1870s

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#19 Interior of gardens with posed figures, 1870s

Interior of gardens with posed figures, 1870s

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#20 Crowds of people and animals, 1870s

Crowds of people and animals, 1870s

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#21 Showing Kingston from the sea, 1860s

Showing Kingston from the sea, 1860s

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#22 Entrance gates and avenue of Marine Gardens. Figures can be seen along the avenue, 1870s

Entrance gates and avenue of Marine Gardens. Figures can be seen along the avenue, 1870s

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#23 Crowded street scene taken from above, 1870s

Crowded street scene taken from above, 1870s

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#24 Kingston with hills behind, taken from the sea, 1860s

Kingston with hills behind, taken from the sea, 1860s

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#25 Calm sea view with deep reflections, 1870s

Calm sea view with deep reflections, 1870s

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#26 Loading a fruit steamer with bananas for northern markets, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890s

Loading a fruit steamer with bananas for northern markets, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890s

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#27 Going Ashore, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890s

Going Ashore, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890s

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#28 Kingston From its Harbour, 1890s

Kingston From its Harbour, 1890s

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#29 Horse-Drawn Carriage Being Loaded W/Coal

Horse-Drawn Carriage Being Loaded W/Coal

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#30 Government House near Kingston, 1890s

Government House near Kingston, 1890s

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#31 Woman at street market, Kingston, 1890

Woman at street market, Kingston, 1890

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#32 Victorian tourists, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890s

Victorian tourists, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890s

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#33 King Street, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890s

King Street, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890s

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#34 Jubilee Market, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890s

Jubilee Market, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890s

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#35 King Street, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890s

King Street, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890s

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#36 Kingston, Jamaica, 1890

Kingston, Jamaica, 1890

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#37 The market, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890

The market, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#38 Country Negroes starting out for Kingston, Jamaica, 1890

Country Negroes starting out for Kingston, Jamaica, 1890

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#39 Fountain, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890

Fountain, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#40 Going to market, Rockfort Road, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890

Going to market, Rockfort Road, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#41 Harbour Street looking west, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890

Harbour Street looking west, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#42 Jubilee Market, Orange St, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890

Jubilee Market, Orange St, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#43 King Street, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890

King Street, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#44 King Street, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890

King Street, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#45 Kingston street scenes, Jamaica, 1890

Kingston street scenes, Jamaica, 1890

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#46 Market, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890

Market, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#47 Victory Market, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890

Victory Market, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#48 A bit on Kingston Harbor, Jamaica, 1891

A bit on Kingston Harbor, Jamaica, 1891

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#49 Castleton Gardens, Kingston, Jamaica, 1891

Castleton Gardens, Kingston, Jamaica, 1891

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#50 Exhibition Hall, Kingston, Jamaica, 1891

Exhibition Hall, Kingston, Jamaica, 1891

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#51 Kingston Exhibition, Jamaica, 1891

Kingston Exhibition, Jamaica, 1891

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#52 Kingston Harbor, Jamaica, 1891

Kingston Harbor, Jamaica, 1891

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#53 Kingston street scenes, Jamaica, 1891

Kingston street scenes, Jamaica, 1891

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#54 Kingston street scenes, Jamaica, 1891

Kingston street scenes, Jamaica, 1891

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#55 Kingston street scenes, Jamaica, 1891

Kingston street scenes, Jamaica, 1891

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#56 Kingston West End, Jamaica, 1891

Kingston West End, Jamaica, 1891

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#57 Negro girls, Kingston, Jamaica, 1891

Negro girls, Kingston, Jamaica, 1891

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#58 Sugar mill, Kingston, Jamaica, 1891

Sugar mill, Kingston, Jamaica, 1891

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#59 The travelers palm, Kingston, Jamaica, 1891

The travelers palm, Kingston, Jamaica, 1891

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#60 Coconut palms, Kingston Harbour, Jamaica, 1895

Coconut palms, Kingston Harbour, Jamaica, 1895

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#61 Beckwith Street, Kingston, Jamaica, 1897

Beckwith Street, Kingston, Jamaica, 1897

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#62 Lively street scene taken from above. Street full of people and vehicles, 1870s

Lively street scene taken from above. Street full of people and vehicles, 1870s

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#63 Harbour Street West, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890

Harbour Street West, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#64 Jubilee Market, West Parade, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890

Jubilee Market, West Parade, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#65 King Street, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890

King Street, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#66 King Street, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890

King Street, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#67 Kingston, looking east, Jamaica, 1890

Kingston, looking east, Jamaica, 1890

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#68 Tom Cringles Cotton Tree, Spanish Town Road, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890

Tom Cringles Cotton Tree, Spanish Town Road, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#69 Tom Cringles Cotton Tree, Spanish Town Road, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890

Tom Cringles Cotton Tree, Spanish Town Road, Kingston, Jamaica, 1890

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#70 Coaling a mail packet, Kingston, 1891

Coaling a mail packet, Kingston, 1891

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#71 Arrival of Prince George at Kingston, Jamaica, 1891

Arrival of Prince George at Kingston, Jamaica, 1891

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#72 Cane cutters, Kingston, Jamaica, 1891

Cane cutters, Kingston, Jamaica, 1891

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#73 Harbour Street, Kingston, Jamaica, 1891

Harbour Street, Kingston, Jamaica, 1891

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#74 Kingston from harbor, Jamaica, 1891

Kingston from harbor, Jamaica, 1891

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#75 Kingston street scenes, Jamaica, 1891

Kingston street scenes, Jamaica, 1891

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#76 Kingston view from Rock Fort, Jamaica, 1891

Kingston view from Rock Fort, Jamaica, 1891

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#77 Kingston, Jamaica, 1891

Kingston, Jamaica, 1891

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#78 King Street looking south, Kingston, 1895

King Street looking south, Kingston, 1895

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#79 Kingston Gardens, Jamaica, 1897

Kingston Gardens, Jamaica, 1897

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#80 Kingston street scenes, Jamaica, 1897

Kingston street scenes, Jamaica, 1897

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#81 Change St at corner of Queen Street, Kingston, Jamaica, 1898

Change St at corner of Queen Street, Kingston, Jamaica, 1898

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

#82 Harbor of Kingston, Jamaica, 1899

Harbor of Kingston, Jamaica, 1899

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Written by Aung Budhh

Husband + Father + librarian + Poet + Traveler + Proud Buddhist. I love you with the breath, the smiles and the tears of all my life.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.