“Everything in the island speaks of evanescence and the lapse of time,” Patrick Leigh Fermor wrote of Antigua in his 1950 book, The Traveller’s Tree, and the 1750s Antigua courthouse in St. John’s is no exception. Having traversed time and purpose, the Antigua courthouse today serves as the Museum of Antigua and Barbuda.
What Is in the Antigua Courthouse?
The museum’s exhibits cover periods far back in time to Antigua’s volcanic origins through colonialism and beyond. Exhibits on slavery (abolished in 1834) intermingle with pottery from long ago. It’s an eclectic place but also a good reminder about how the law changes, judges change, and courts change.
Especially for Lawyers
Lawyerly sorts might be drawn to information on the Antigua Courthouse’s history and old laws, such as one aimed at preventing the spread of smallpox.
The history of this particular building and this particular place may resonate as well—Antigua was yet another location ‘discovered’ by Christopher Columbus and later colonized by the British. Antigua and Barbuda obtained their independence in 1981.
Interested in historic courthouses? You might like these posts:
- Courthouses around the World: Old Courthouse, Cong, Ireland
- Work in a One-Room Law Office
- New U.S. District Courthouse for the Northern Mariana Islands