Climbing to the Bougainvillea


Climbing to the Bougainvillea

 Limited Edition Giclee Print By Jill Tattersall 12" x 8"

When I was living in the Bougainvillea in the 70’s I took a photograph looking upward from the steep uneven steps, which I believe, are no longer used. The building stands on the foundations of a 17th century Dutch fort, later replaced by the Road Town Fort. While the 18th century Government Treasury lies beneath the clinic side. When I unearthed this photograph, I visualized a family toiling upwards towards the battlemented path we called The Soldiers' Walk on their way to see the doctor.

Only once was a cannon fired in anger from the Fort, when an enemy warship sailed into the harbour and fired on the town square, knocking down a market stall. The Fort's rusty British canon was quick to return fire, but unfortunately exploded causing Tortola's only casualties in a hundred years of war against the French.

The seventeen cisterns held their own treasury of water and for many years people would wander in and out of the place to fill their buckets, usually at night - we had of course no keys in those happy days, nor any reason to lock our doors.