British Honduras Company, Limited 1864 (Belize Estate and Produce Company )

British Honduras Company, Limited 1864 (Belize Estate and Produce Company )

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British Honduras Company, Limited 1864 (Belize Estate and Produce Company )

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Beautifully engraved certificate from the British Honduras Company, Limited issued in 1864. This historic document has an ornate border around it. This item is hand signed by the company’s directors and secretary and is over 136 years old. In 1502, Columbus sailed into and named the Bay of Honduras but he did not actually visit the area later known as British Honduras. The first recorded European settlement was established in 1683 by shipwrecked British sailors. These were later augmented by disbanded British soldiers and sailors after the capture of Jamaica from Spain in 1655. The settlement, whose main activity was logwood cutting, had a troubled history during the next 150 years. It was subjected to numerous attacks from neighboring Spanish settlements. It was only in 1763 that Spain in the Treaty of Paris allowed the British settlers to engage in the logwood industry. This was reaffirmed by the Treaty of Versailles in 1783 and the area of logwood concession was extended by the Convention of London in 1786. But Spanish attacks continued until a decisive victory was won by settlers, with British naval support, in the Battle of St. George's Caye in 1798. After that British control over the settlement gradually increased and in 1862 British Honduras was formally declared a British Colony. From an early date the settlers had governed themselves under a system of primitive democracy by Public Meeting. A constitution based on this system was granted in 1765 and this, with some modification continued until 1840 when an Executive Council was created. The Crown Colony system of Government was introduced in 1871, and the Legislative Assembly by its own vote was replaced by a nominated Legislative Council with an official majority presided over by the Lieutenant Governor. Further constitutional advances came in 1954 with the introduction of universal adult suffrage and an elected majority in the Legislature; the ministerial system was adopted in 1961. The country's name was changed on 1st June, 1973, from British Honduras to Belize. Independence was achieved on September 21, 1981 and a new independence constitution introduced. During the years from 1858 to 1861, the Honduras Land Titles Acts were passed to allow land in Belize to be sold without proven land title. The British Honduras Company began operations in 1858. This company's name was changed to the Belize Estate and Produce Company in 1875. The Belize Estate and Produce Company was a major force in the country. It owned 20% of Belize, and 50% of the private land in the country.

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  • brithoncomli
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  • 1
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  • Coins & Currency
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  • Antiques
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