Fort George and the Belize Harbour in early 1800's
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Thursday June 30, 2016

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The soldiers are on Fort George Island and the picture stares straight up the river mouth. Foreshore on the left and north side on the right. Right is the North side and the left is the South side. Wesley was on the South side and not shown in the this painting. At the time of this painting big Wesley Cathedral, on Albert Street, was not built yet. The church on the right would have had to be somewhere on Queen Street or Northeast of Queen Street. Quite possibly there wasnít any church there at the time, but it may have been placed there to provide some interest to the pairing. St John's was the only church in the town in the early 1800s. It originally had a spire. Perhaps the artist copied it to the north side to balance his painting. The similar painting of the south side (by the same artist?) shows the spire of St John's in the correct place. There once was an Ebeneezer Church in the vicinity of the jail.


Here is the Maskall Map of c 1829 the arrow is pointing to where the church is and the blue circle is where the painter in the bove picture would have been. It shows a church in that vicinity. I think it was Wesleyan. That could be the only church it can be in my estimation, but that church would have been too far away to have shown so predominantly in the painting. However, it is in the right direction and would have been constructed at the time this painting was made. Would that church show up like that to the painter. The Church was facing the painter. The steeple shown in the painting looks much closer to the bridge than the Wesleyan Chapel on the Maskall map: artistic license? If there was a church there, substantial enough to have a high steeple or spire, it is strange that none of us knows anything about it and there is no trace of it today! The bridge was wooden before the current steel bridge. The soldiers are of different races and I canít imagine that they would use those fancy uniforms in 1815 British Honduras.

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Fort George and the Belize Harbour in early 1800's

Looking at Southern Foreshore from Fort George Island in the early 1800's when Fort George was really a fort, cannons and all. No Church in the early 1800's. Either a back-drop for the painting or a Fire Bell. (lol) There appears to be quite a lot of artistic license in this painting, For one thing the 4-arch bridge looks far too substantial for the time - more like a stone bridge!

1803 June 30th - Erection of Fort George, a small fort on an island off the river mouth of the Belize Harbour.
Source: Honduras Almanack 1829

The area between this island and the mainland was eventually filled.

The Haulover Creek is a coastal stream that runs through the center of Belize City and discharges into the Caribbean Sea. It is known for being the inlet of the Belize Harbour.

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