Barbados Jewish Community

President’s Message – November 5

Word of the week:

Dear all,
We received this information from our friends in Jamaica about a new book written by Stanley Mirvis that has been published about the Jews of Jamaica.
THE JEWS OF EIGHTEENTH-CENTURY JAMAICA: A TESTAMENTARY HISTORY OF A DIASPORA IN TRANSITION. (New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2020  ISBN: 978-030-023-881-5. (Reviewed by Michael Rom1)

“Although the Jamaican Jewish community was the second largest in the eighteenth-century English-speaking world, Jamaican Jews have not received nearly as much historiographic attention as other colonial Caribbean Jewish communities in places such as Barbados, Curaçao, and Suriname. This neglect is due to the paucity of Jewish historical documentation from Jamaica, with all pre-twentieth-century communal records lost in the Kingston fire of 1882 and the 1907 earthquake that destroyed the city’s synagogues. One important type of historical source remains, however, in the form of over four hundred Jewish wills from what Stanley Mirvis calls “the long eighteenth century” (10), spanning from 1673 to 1815. These wills provide the primary documentary basis of his path breaking social history of Jamaican Jews, in addition to other meticulously assembled sources, including colonial government papers, correspondence with London Jewish communal institutions, naturalization records, newspapers, parliamentary debates, and tombstones. Using these expertly culled documents, Mirvis has produced an impressively nuanced, riveting account of an immigrant community in transition, one that includes both Ashkenazim and Sephardim, merchants and planters, and even one Jew who travelled on board a pirate ship, although it seems that he was merely along for the ride”.

Our Caribbean Jewish history is rich with stories and this Sunday you will hear the incredible story of a 500 year journey from Portugal via Amsterdam, London and Barbados to the USA, when Keith Atkinson and Nancy Cavalho-Atkinson present their story as part of our ZOOM lecture series.

Please make sure and join us this Sunday November 07th at 11am (Barbados time) 10am (EST).
Topic: BJC Lecture Series featuring Keith and Nancy Atkinson
Time: Nov 7, 2021 10:00 AM Eastern Time (US and Canada)
To join us on Zoom for this exciting presentation, click this link.
If for any reason a pass code is requested, please email for the code.


Motel Truss- November 04
Leon Bernstein- November 11

(If I have missed anyone’s Yahrzeit, please email me at

This Friday night services will be on ZOOM at 6:30pm local time (5:30pm EDT)
If a pass code is requested, please email for assistance.

Shabbat Shalom!

Sharon Oran
President, Barbados Jewish Community