01 March 1738
WHEN THE English forces landed in Jamaica in May 1655, they quickly routed the small Spanish garrison. However, they held off enforcing the surrender for a few days thus allowing most of the Spanish to escape to Cuba. Significantly, the Spaniards also freed their slaves and left them behind in the mountains with vague instructions to harass the English until troops for the anticipated re-conquest could be raised. These freed slaves, later known as Maroons, quickly organised themselves into a highly efficient fighting force. For more than 80 years they waged a devastating guerrilla war against the English.