Victor Gittens

James William Gittens – Slavery to Freedom

The story of James William Gittens was researched and written by Victor Gittens.

Victor Elsworth Gittens was born in Barbados and still resides on the island with his wife, Jeanne and children Graham and Jenna. He lived for a short while in Jamaica from 1968 to 1971 while perusing a degree at the university of the West Indies. His family research started in 1973 and has been carried out in spurts over a period of 30 years. He currently is retired and continues to maintain a keen interest in Caribbean history, politics and society.


The History of one Family from the days of slavery in Barbados and its continuation in the twenty first century.

The story of James William Gittens is a very well written account of one Barbadian family whose earliest know ancestor was James William Gittens (1787-1835). James William Gittens was baptized on October 28, 1787, and described as a black slave of the Honourable Joshua Gittens of Pilgrim Plantation. The research and story suggests that James William was probably not just a slave or servant of the Hon. Joshua Gittens, but rather his child, born of a relationship with one of his favoured female servants.

One of the things that makes this story so very interesting is that the narrative traces the early development of Barbados and identifies the socio-political and economic context in which the family of James William Gittens and his descendent arose.

Here is the link to the story

Then open the Word document.

1 thought on “James William Gittens – Slavery to Freedom

  1. Reply
    Peter Coombes - February 6, 2022

    Very interesting. Thank you. I’m preparing a Heritage Trail for Paddington Old Cemetery in London, UK.
    One of the buried is Colonel John Gittens Maycock. He is definitely a descendant of the Gittens & Maycocks of Barbados. He was born in 1823 and died 16 Jan 1906.
    There is also a Codrington buried in Paddington. I think his descendant gave his Barbados slave holdings to the Church of England. I’m still researching him!

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