Queen’s Quarter

With 53 estates, Queen’s Quarter has the third most estates for St. Croix Quarters, less than Prince and East End A Quarters. Of these estates, 32 had an icon for a sugar mill, either a windmill or animal mill.

Of the 32 estates, 27 may have had a windmill at some point. A total of 32 icons appear on historic maps that indicate a windmill may have been present, with more than one windmill in Castle Coakley, Barren Spot, and Cane Garden. Of the potential windmills, 21 have been located through field reconnaissance. Several of the windmills not located, such as Jerusalem and Hope were likely demolished in the creation of the industrial facilities on the south shore. At least four of the locations are dubious as to whether or not they depict a windmill for crushing sugar cane, including a third windmill tower at Castle Coakley, a second windmill tower at Barren Spot and Cane Garden, and a likely water tower at Concordia along Salt River.

As curious are these extra windmills, discrepancies and omissions on various historic maps pose curious issues. For instance, the placement of a windmill in estate 5 on the Beck printed maps likely belongs in estate 8 for Concordia. Similarly, the oblation of the animal mill in estate 22 from the first printed Beck map to the second printing, with a windmill depicted in estate 23 on the second printing emphasizes the apparent importance of the accuracy of the information included on the printed Beck maps along with the location of sugar mills. Lastly, the Parsons map omits windmills from several locations, with the omission of the quite visible windmill at Bonne Esperance from the Parsons raises additional questions. This windmill serves now as an effective landmark for navigating into Salt River Bay, and its omission from a navigation chart remains quite curious. Parsons also includes a high number of towers without sails, more than in other quarters, suggesting that Queen’s Quarter may have been early adopters of steam mills sufficiently dependable to decommission windmills.

McGuire geographic dictionary of the Virgin Islands (p.154) simply notes the location of Queen’s Quarter and various translations of the Quarter name. The 1917 population of 1,398, 97% of which are specified to be colored, has doubtlessly grown in the last century.

Queen's Quarter in St. Croix indicating windmill locations.