Morant Bay was the site of the Morant Bay Rebellion in 1865, led by Jamaican national hero Paul Bogle, a very significant event in the history of Jamaica and the struggle for freedom from colonialism.
The site of the courthouse where the action happened burned down in 2007, but the famous Paul Bogle statue is there. In 2005, even the historic society was struggling, but this is definitely a place to visit if you are into history.
- Memorial Garden — Opposite the court house is a memorial garden for the Jamaican soldiers who lost their lives during World War 1. At the centre of the gardens, a monument has been erected in their honour.
- Morant Bay Fort — Behind the court house is a small park containing the ruins of the Morant Bay Fort. The fort dates from 1758 and was designed to hold nine guns. Three cannons remain there today. During an excavation behind the court house in 1973 in the park, the bodies of 79 people were discovered. They are believed to have been killed during the 1865 rebellion. Their remains were reinterred in a mass grave in the park. A plaque was installed to commemorate their lives.
- Morant Bay Court House — The Morant Bay Rebellion began as a protest outside the court house. It was destroyed by fire during the rebellion but was rebuilt afterwards. This historic court house was destroyed by fire in 2007. A statue of Paul Bogle, sculpted by Edna Manley (wife of Norman Manley and mother of Michael Manley), had been installed outside the court house, but it was put into storage after the 2007 fire. A new court house was completed and opened in August 2014. The 9,013 square-foot building includes two courtrooms with jury boxes, two judges’ chambers, a registry, clerk’s office, jury room, witness room, lunch room, sick bay, holding area with police post, public sanitary facilities, and a 40 feet container for storage of files and accommodation for the bailiff.
- St. Thomas Parish Church — Located to the West of the Court House. It was constructed in 1865 to replace another church which previously occupied the site.
In case of emergency, dial the police, from any phone (even without signal), at 119. You are requried to use the dial pad for processing. Morant Bay is served by the Morant Bay Police.