Liberated Africans changed the ethnic, social and economic landscape of New Providence. As they were settled, by the British, in greater and greater numbers, in Nassau, many excelled and became monied personalities in their lifetime.
Settlement of Liberated Africans began long before the end of slavery in 1834. Their settlement continued, as and when, until as late as 1860, when the slave trade finally ended in places like Cuba, Brazil and America.
Liberated Africans were never slaves in The Bahamas. This caused ethnic tensions between those who were still enslaved and later emancipated in 1834.
Liberated Africans were settled in Carmichael, Grant’s Town, Adelaide and Gambier – then allowed to go about as they pleased. This group became entrepreneurial out of economic necessity and sheer human survival.
Some became unfortunate, ending up as beggars and criminals. Life was very hard in this new strange land. Those who possessed some skills or would make good labourers, were taken by employers, and classified as indentured apprentices.
Some, however, excelled tremendously in agriculture, business and land ownership.
Peter Pinder born in Yoruba
Liberated Africans adopted English surnames and common Christian names found in The Bahamas.
Peter Pinder, in 1875, was described in the Nassau newspapers, as a native of Yoruba. Peter Pinder was a land owner, planter and agriculturalist. Hercules Charles Pinder, landowner and stone mason contractor. These men may well have been brothers.
Peter and Hercules were monied negroes, as well as, contemporaries of Alliday Adderley. These men were all born in Africa in an area called Yoruba. Yoruba was formed of a Sub-Saharan African ethnic group who inhabited West Africa. Today, this area comprises Nigeria, Benin, and Togo.
Peter Pinder and Hercules Charles Pinder like Alliday Adderley, were part of that group of a few thousand blacks, who were freed from slave ships bound for Cuba, Brazil, and the United States. They were Liberated Africans.
1875 – Peter Pinder, an enterprising native of Yoruba owns a large tract of land. This land may have been called ‘Horsham.’ Peter grows fields of sweet potatoes and mangoes.
1876 – Peter Pinder takes John Adderley to court for trespass on certain land at the village of Carmichael
1880 – Large scale orange farmers in Nassau are hit with a tropical disease affecting their trees. Among those affected are the orange groves of Alliday Adderley and Peter Pinder.
1886 – Peter Pinder’s house, in Adelaide, was intentionally burnt down by an arsonist.
1870 – Peter Pinder is charged and convicted in court for receiving cattle distrained. Distrained meant that Peter Pinder seize the property (the cattle) of (someone) in order to obtain payment of money owed. A key witness for the defence was Hercules Pinder.
Peter Pinder was fined £10 for this offence.
Hercules Charles Pinder, Liberated African born roughly around 1848
In 1883, Hercules Pinder, was a stone mason and a government contractor. He had recently built a water Tank in the Public Market. Hercules incurred additional construction costs. He went to Mr. D. A. Brice, Member of the House of Assembly, asking for a petition to be presented to the House of Assembly for reimbursement.
The Assembly refused.
In 1897, at the same as Henry Christopher Christie, (father of Harold G. Christie, Frank Christie and Percy Christie) was fined 10 shillings for not appearing for Jury duty, Hercules Pinder was excused for one week due to ill health
In 1889, Hercules Pinder sold, by auction, a substantial amount of property in the Western District
Horsham’s Tract in the Western District may have been the agricultural farm of Peter Pinder and Hercules Pinder. In 1889, all of this property and more was being auctioned off, under the direct instructions of Hercules Pinder.
Hercules Pinder also owned land near Bay Street. His estate still retained that portion of land near Dorchester Street in 1910, some eight years after his death.
Hercules Charles Pinder died intestate on 28th October 1902. This means he was born in 1848. It appears that he may have been ill for a number of years. In 1897, Hercules Pinder was excused from Jury duty, for a week, because of illness.
Pinder died at 54 years of age from heart failure caused by extreme vomiting.
Rachel Ann Collins sister of Hercules Charles Pinder
Hercules Charles Pinder’s sister Rachel Ann Collins, who lived in his house on Augusta Street, applied to be administrator of his property in November 1902.
Rachel Collins was born in Nassau around 1854. In 1930 she was 76 years old and lived in West Palm Beach. She gave birth to a daughter, Victoria Russell, in Florida in 1890.
Rachel Ann Collins, in turn, appointed William Parliament Adderley (son of Alliday Adderley and father of A. F. Adderley) to be in charge of her affairs in Nassau.
1903 – Three months after Hercules Charles Pinder dies, a fire destroys his house on Augusta Street. House was occupied by his sister Mrs. Rachel Ann Collins and her daughters. The house was insured.
Augusta Street, at the top of the hill, was once a district for the well to do, monied and highly placed. By the 1920s it contained a millionaires row.