Rochford Square: Neighbor to the Bog

Rochford Square, 1884 <br> Photo courtesy of the Public Archives and Records Office, Acc2301-89

Rochford Square, 1884
Photo courtesy of the Public Archives and Records Office, Acc2301-89

The image shows Rochford Square likely after 1884, when trees had been planted throughout the square. Part of the Bog, the Island’s first Black neighborhood, is visible in the background. Founded by Samuel Martin, a former slave and later chimney sweep, in about 1812-1814, the community would grow to include about 100 people who identified as Black. The number declined a bit by the time that the 1881 census was taken to a total of 84. Many would move out of the community and a large number intermarried with other Islanders so that by the early part of the 20th century, the Bog had changed significantly.

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