In 1796 almost 600 Maroons were deported from Jamaica to Nova Scotia, following their rebellion against the colonial government. They worked on the third fortification at the Citadel in Halifax and on Government House, and performed other manual labour. They also attempted to farm. However, like the previous occupants of the poor, rocky land at Preston, they had little success. The Maroons found farming in Nova Scotia difficult, especially as the climate prevented the growing of familiar food crops such as pineapples, bananas, yams, and cocoa. A small number interested in farming were resettled from Preston to Boydville (Maroon Hill, Halifax County). Lieutenant Governor Sir John Wentworth attempted to change the Maroons’ culture by introducing them to Christianity. However, the Maroons were not interested in giving up their own religion and would not work for less than the wages a white person would receive. In 1800 virtually all of the Maroons took advantage of the opportunity provided by the Sierra Leone Company to emigrate to Sierra Leone.
From Nova Scotia Archives
“Leonard Parkinson, a captain of the Maroons” courtesy of Nova Scotia Archives.
Image of Maroons constructing Maroon Bastion at Citadel Hill, courtesy of Parks Canada