If you've learned even a little bit of history in school, you know the story of old Captain Peter Wallace.

An old Buccaneer, he's supposedly the namesake of Belize - because - the story goes - his name was corrupted to Ballis by the Spanish - and that eventually became the name of the Belize River.

The rest, as they say is history...

But is it? Or is it just a story? Historian Barbara Bulmer Thomas has scoured the historical record for this elusive Captain Wallace…and guess what she found? A big fat zero! That's the subject of a lecture she will deliver tomorrow night at the house of culture in Belize City. She told us about it:..

Jules Vasquez
"What is the truth about Peter Wallace?"

Barbara Bulmer Thomas, "Peter Wallace: Fact or Fiction"
"Well, the truth about Peter Wallace, as I should be demonstrating tomorrow evening is there is no good historical evidence for his existence."

Jules Vasquez
"What is it that forces this myth into creations, because many times social circumstances conspire to bring a myth into creation, intime they call for a making of a certain myth."

Barbara Bulmer Thomas, "Peter Wallace: Fact or Fiction"
"Well yes you put your finger on the point of it. I mean the myth can be trace back to 1827. It was a time when Belize was thinking of becoming a British Colony and of course as we all about Belize, we don't know how it started as a settlement, unlike all the other Caribbean countries or the Latin American countries for that matter."

Jules Vasquez
"So then where does the name come from?"

Barbara Bulmer Thomas, "Peter Wallace: Fact or Fiction"
"Oh no, no, no, you have to leave me something for my audience tomorrow."

Jules Vasquez
"Fair enough."

Prof. Victor Bulmer - Thomas "Belize Economy Since Independence"
"If we go to that period of the 1820's as you mention when the Wallace myth was created, this was a period of extraordinary prosperity in what was then the settlement of Belize, and on becoming a colony, the colony of British Honduras the economy went into decline and ultimately into a fall. Since the independence in 1981 that fall has been reverse but only partially and so the Belize economy is still a relatively a poor one in relation to the rest of the Caribbean."

"On balance the independence has been a very good thing for Belize in economic terms there is no questions about that. If independence had come a little bit earlier, 20, 30, 40 years earlier, it's difficult to say, but I think the performance of the Belize economy would have improved."

"One of the fundamentally weaknesses in Belize since independence is been the problems of fiscal concessions. Too many concessions to too many big companies, rich individuals and so on, and we've done some statistical work on this and it does look as if compared with other countries in the region Belize is under taxed and that may seem very strange to the average Belizean who thinks, but I am paying too much tax, but those thing are perfectly compatibly because if you are offering fiscal concessions to the rich and the powerful inevitable those that remain would have to pay more."

Professor Victor Bulmer Thomas lecture on the Belize economy since Independence will be delivered on Wednesday night at the George Price Center in Belmopan.

Both events start at 7:00 pm and run for two hours.

Channel 7