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Parishes of Jamaica

Parishes of Jamaica

Administratively, Jamaica is divided into fourteen parishes. They are grouped into three historic counties, which have no administrative relevance (traditional capitals in parentheses):

  Parish Area
km²
Population
Census 2001
Capital
Cornwall County
1 Hanover 450.4 67,037 Lucea
2 Saint Elizabeth 1,212.4 146,404 Black River
3 Saint James 594.9 175,127 Montego Bay
4 Trelawny 874.6 73,066 Falmouth
5 Westmoreland 807.0 138,947 Savanna-la-Mar
Middlesex County
6 Clarendon 1,196.3 237,024 May Pen
7 Manchester 830.1 185,801 Mandeville
8 Saint Ann 1,212.6 166,762 Saint Ann's Bay
9 Saint Catherine 1,192.4 482,308 Spanish Town
10 Saint Mary 610.5 111,466 Port Maria
Surrey County
11 Kingston (parish)(1) (2) 21.8 96,052 Kingston
12 Portland 814.0 80,205 Port Antonio
13 Saint Andrew(1) 430.7 555,828 Half Way Tree
14 Saint Thomas 742.8 91,604 Morant Bay
  Jamaica 10,990.5 2,607,631 Kingston
(1) The parishes of Kingston and Saint Andrew together form the Kingston and St. Andrew Corporation.
(2) The parish of Kingston does not encompass all of the city of Kingston. Most of the city is in the parish of St. Andrew.

Former Parishes

Parishes have been a feature of local administration in Jamaica ever since the island was captured by the English in 1655. Throughout its history, Jamaica has had a number of parishes, some of which no longer exist (having either been absorbed or divided between neighbouring parishes). At its most in 1865, Jamaica once had 22 parishes (the current 14 plus the ones listed below). The current order of parishes was established in 1867 through the elimination of 8 parishes. These former parishes were (roughly according to counties):

Surrey:

Middlesex:

  • Metcalfe (now part of Saint Mary)
  • Saint Dorothy (now part of Saint Catherine)
  • Saint John (now part of Saint Catherine)
  • Saint Thomas in the Vale (now part of Saint Catherine) note that the current Saint Thomas used to be named “Saint Thomas in the East” to differentiate between the two parishes at the time.
  • Vere (now part of Clarendon)

 

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