The island of St. John is rich in historical and archaelogical sites, including many ruins of sugar and cotton plantations and other buildings.
Cinnamon Bay Next to Cinnamon Bay lie the remains of a sugar factory, seen below.
The remains of buildings are covered quickly by the relentless growth of vegetation in the temperate climate.
The ruins of several windmills can be found in various places within the boundaries of the national park. The one below, reached by a hike up a short, steep trail, is located on Peace Hill which commands a view of Hawksnest Bay. It was originally part of a sugar mill on this area.
The remains of a manor--the Francis Bay Estate House--can be found along the trail to Francis Bay.
South of Mary Creek are the remains of an old school originally built in 1844. It is seen in the picture on the left below. On the right is another old building not far from Maho Bay.
The most heavily visited of the ruins on the island are the remains of the Annaberg Sugar Mill. These ruins are located south of Leinster Bay. The picture below shows the large windmill located at the site, one of 5 windmill ruins remaining on the island. The sugar mill itself was partially reconstructed in the 1960's.
Another view of the windmill is presented on the left with the waters of Leinster Bay in the background. On the right is another large building at the site. The walls of the mill were built of native stone as well as bricks which had been used as ballast on ships sailing to the island.
More buildings at the mill are shown below. The products of this mill included sugar, molasses, and rum. The slaves whose labor made this industry possible had to cut sugar cane on the steep mountain slopes of the island, fire ovens, and work over boiling vats. This mill operated until the late 1800's.
At Little Lameshur Bay the remains of a house sit on a bluff overlooking the bay.
In addition to the overwhelming vegetation found everywhere on the island there are also a wide variety of animals as well. One surprising creature found in the wild sections of the park are donkeys, remnants of animals used for transportation until the 1950's. They now exist in a wild state within the park. Two of these animals may be seen below.
Additional donkies can be seen below.
The speed limit on most of the island roads is 20 mph. This is not only because the roads are narrow; but because unexpected hazards may be found around any curve, such as another normally domestic animal which runs wild on St. John, the goat, as seen walking across the East End Road below.
One other interesting creature which may be found near the shores of the island is the hermit crab, caught below moving through the sand.
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- All photographs © Pat Holleran, Shannon Image Technologies, 1995-6
- Commercial use of the images contained in this document without express written consent is strictly prohibited.