July 20: “Owners Of Large Tracts Of Idle Land Will Be Compelled To Use Them Or Offer Them”

1952: Four of Jamaica’s team of seven athletes at the XV World Olympiad in Helsinki, Finland, make their first appearance in track events. Herbert McKenley, versatile holder of the world’s 440 yards record at 46 seconds flat, goes into the semi-finals of the 100 metres after winning his second-round sprint in 10.5 seconds. He won the first round in 10.7 seconds.

1954: Herb McKenley, world-record quarter-miler, is to be appointed supervisor of athletics in the island beginning in August 1. This announcement is made in the House of Representatives by Donald Sangster, minister of finance in presenting the first Supplementary Estimates of expenditure for the current financial year. Explaining a subvention of £1,200 to the Jamaica Amateur Athletic Association included in the Estimates, the minister said it was to provide for salary and expenses for employment of a supervisor of athletics for part of the year as from August 1.

1956: A young cultivator hacked his common-law wife and their two-and-a-half year old son to death at Dumfries, near Morant Bay. He then, it is alleged, changes his clothes, stuck his machete under his arm and walks to the nearest police station to report the murders. Egbert Barclay, 28, is subsequently arrested and charged on the two counts with murder.

1961: Jamaica is due to receive US $5M (about £1,785,000) to finance low-cost housing and all-island water supplies out of US $7M about £2,499,000 allocated by the American government to the West Indies Federation. The premier, Norman Manley, releases this official announcement by the US government simultaneously with its release in the federal capital of Port-of-Spain and in Washington.

1964: Owners of large tracts of idle land will be compelled either to use them or offer them to small operators for cultivation, Prime Minister Sir Alexander Bustamante announces. In a press release the prime minister declares that approximatley two years ago he made an appeal to large land owners who have unused land to make available to peasant farmers some of these lands for the planting of foodstuffs. Up to now, only one landowner has heeded his plea.

1966: The acting prime minister, Donald Sangster, said the Government was concerned about the problems which will be created by the closing of the Holland Sugar Factory in St Elizabeth, and is now actively engaged in discussions which will prevent the situation from becoming a serious one. Sangster makes this announcement after he met Minister of Communications and Works N. Cleveland Lewis and Mr C.D. Wright, MP for South Western St Elizabeth, in his office at the Ministry of Finance.