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Barbadian Americans

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Barbadian Americans
Total population
68,234 (2019)[1]
Regions with significant populations
New York, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Florida, Georgia, California
English, (American English, Barbadian English), Bajan Creole
Related ethnic groups
Afro-Caribbean, Barbadian British, Barbadian Brazilians, Indo-Caribbeans, Barbadian people, African Americans, Irish Americans, Arab Americans, Indian Americans, Chinese Americans

Barbadian (or Bajan) Americans are Americans of full or partial Barbadian heritage. The 2000 Census recorded 53,785 US residents born on the Caribbean island[2] 52,170 of whom were born to non-American parents[3] and 54,509 people who described their ethnicity as Barbadian.[4] The 2010 US Census estimation report stated more than 62,000 Barbadian Americans are resident in the United States, most of whom are in the area of New York City extending from Rhode Island to Delaware. In past years, some also moved to the areas of Chicago, Illinois,[5] and Boston, Massachusetts.[6][7]


The first Barbadian immigrants in the United States were white Barbadian settlers. Some of these white settlers from Barbados were former indentured servants, who were replaced by African black slaves brought to the island in vast numbers for its flourishing sugar industry after 1650.[8] Barbadians were sent to Carolina as slaves.[9] The first West Indians brought to the United States were forced laborers from Barbados, who were transferred to South Carolina in the 1670s to work on plantations. Slaves from Barbados became a significant part of the black population in Virginia, mainly in the tidewater region of the Chesapeake Bay.[10][11]

Settlement patterns[edit]

A majority of Barbadian immigrants tend to live in Philadelphia esp. in the North Philadelphia and the West Philadelphia sections. Barbadians along with other various Caribbean Americans follow the agricultural and even more in the landscaping, construction, domestics and hospitality industries of both Florida and urban industrial areas of the Northeast Corridor or Eastern Seaboard. In the 2000s, an estimated 100,000 Barbadian Americans had residences in each of the areas of New York and Philadelphia.

Barbadians are concentrated in East Flatbush, Brooklyn, and surrounding neighborhoods in New York City.[12] Barbadian immigrants began settling in New York around the year 1900.[13]

Nearly 57% of Barbadians live in New York and around 9% live in Florida.[14]

The counties with the largest Barbadian population are Kings County, New York, Queens County, New York, Bronx County, New York, Suffolk County, Massachusetts, Nassau County, New York and Broward County, Florida.[15]

Politics and government[edit]

Eric Holder, the 82nd United States Attorney General, has roots in Barbados. His father Eric Himpton Holder, Sr. (1905–1970) was born in St. Joseph, Barbados. His mother Miriam's birth occurred in New Jersey to parents who were immigrants from Saint Philip, Barbados.

The Barbados government also maintains diplomatic and consular representation in a handful of American cities and towns. These include an Embassy in Washington, D.C., two Consulates-General in: Miami, New York City;[16] a Permanent Mission to the United Nations in New York City;[16] and is also further supported by a collection of Honorary Consulates in: Atlanta, Boston, Denver, Detroit, Houston, Los Angeles, Louisville, New Orleans, Portland, San Francisco, and Toledo.[17]

Notable people[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Table B04006 - PEOPLE REPORTING ANCESTRY- American Community Survey 1-Year Estimates". United States Census Bureau. 2019. Retrieved 29 June 2022.
  2. ^ "Country-of-birth database". Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development. Archived from the original on June 17, 2009. Retrieved April 4, 2010.
  3. ^ "Profile of selected demographic and social characteristics: 2000" (PDF). US Census Bureau. Retrieved April 4, 2010.
  4. ^ "Ancestry (total categories tallied) for people with one or more ancestry categories reported". US Census Bureau. Retrieved April 4, 2010.
  5. ^ "Barbadians", The Electronic Encyclopedia of Chicago.
  6. ^ "Caribbean Heritage Association, Boston - History". Archived from the original on 28 April 2012.
  7. ^ "Facts for Features: Caribbean-American Heritage Month, June 2013", United States Census Bureau.
  8. ^ Daniels, Roger (2001). American Immigration: A Student Companion. Oxford University Press. p. 48. ISBN 978-0-19-511316-7.
  9. ^ "Barbadians in Carolina · African Passages, Lowcountry Adaptations · Lowcountry Digital History Initiative". ldhi.library.cofc.edu. Retrieved 8 March 2024.
  10. ^ "The history of Caribbean immigrants in the U.S. you should know". 17 June 2021.
  11. ^ "Early Carolina Settlement: Barbados Influence · African Passages, Lowcountry Adaptations · Lowcountry Digital History Initiative". ldhi.library.cofc.edu. Retrieved 8 March 2024.
  12. ^ "Barbadians in the New York Metro Area" (PDF).
  13. ^ Jackson, Kenneth T.; Keller, Lisa; Flood, Nancy (December 2010). The Encyclopedia of New York City: Second Edition. Yale University Press. ISBN 978-0300182576.
  14. ^ Frazier, John W.; Tettey-Fio, Eugene (2006). Race, Ethnicity, and Place in a Changing America. Global Academic. p. 158. ISBN 9781586842642.
  15. ^ "U.S. Immigrant Population by State and County | migrationpolicy.org". Retrieved 8 March 2024.
  16. ^ a b Department of State (12 August 2011). "Background Note: Barbados". Government of the United States of America. Retrieved October 10, 2011.
  17. ^ List of Barbadian Honorary Consulates Archived 2016-03-03 at the Wayback Machine (as of September 2011), Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade Barbados

Further reading[edit]

  • Mulraine, Lloyd E. "Barbadian Americans." Gale Encyclopedia of Multicultural America, edited by Thomas Riggs, (3rd ed., vol. 1, Gale, 2014), pp. 237–249. online

External links[edit]