St. James Church near Holetown
in the western part of the island dates from 1872 although it was built
on the site of the early settlers 1660 church.
The population of the Barbados is roughly
275,000. On an island of 430 square km, this makes for a high density rate,
roughly 650 people per square km. The Amerindian influences on Barbadian
(Bajan, in the local dialect) culture were not substantial. No place names
and relatively few artifacts indicate their presence. Spanish and French
influences seen on neighbouring Windward Islands were also negligible.
The island sensibility is a product of two primary cultures, British and
African. The island was subsequently a British possession for its entire
colonial history and today retains more British customs and sensibilities
- afternoon teas, cricket, formal dinners - than you'll see anywhere south
of the Bahamas. Barbados has a high literacy rate and, subsequently, one
of the highest per capita incomes in the Caribbean. Barbados is an independent
member of the Commonwealth.