Chimney Sweeper, Jamaica, 1838

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This record was last updated on 13 May 2016

Image Reference

Isaac Mendes Belisario, Sketches of character, in illustration of the habits, occupation, and costume of the Negro population, in the island of Jamaica: drawn after nature, and in lithography (Kingston, Jamaica: published by the artist, at his residence, 1837-1838).

Captioned, Chimneysweeper, this illustration shows a man in tattered clothes, carrying several brooms and smoking a pipe. Acknowledging that chimney sweepers as exist in England are "unknown in the colonies," Belisario depicts the sweeper who works in certain Kingston houses which have the typical "kitchen-chimney with its covered top, as a protection to the fire during the heavy falls of rain." Noting that the preferred wood used in kitchens is the cashew, "the inhabitants of Kingston are by law obliged to have their chimneys frequently swept, a precaution highly requisite in a city where the houses are shingled." For background on the artist, see Belisario01.