Posts in Neighborhood History
Why "Jamaica?" In 1656, Peter Stuyvesant, the Dutch Governor, granted a group of English settlers a grant to settle in the land that we now call "Jamaica." At first, Stuyvesant dubbed the town "Rustdorp," which is Dutch for "rest town." However, the English gained control of the settlement in 1664, and began referring to the land as "Jameco," after the Canarsie tribe's word for "beaver." Over time, "Jameco" became "Jamaica." While the country "Jamaica" shares the same name, their origins are different, as the country gets its name from the Taino word "Xaymaca," meaning "land of wood and water." Peter Stuyvesant Dutch Church in the 1700s Colonial Settlement In its early days, Jamaica was settled by a group of English families.