Barbados National Heroes
These outstanding Barbadians are recognized as National Heroes for their roles in positively changing Barbados. In their honour April 28th is celebrated each year as National Heroes Day. Visit the Barbados National Heroes Gallery for an interactive introduction to these heroes.
Rt. Hon. Errol Barrow (1920-1987)
Father of Barbados' Independence. November, 1966 Graduate of Ecomonics (London school of economics) and law (Inns of Court) Barrow return to barbados after serving with the RAF (Flying Officer) in world war II. As Barbados forst Prime minister and in the years that followed he led Barbados toward a social democracy with free education to all levels, abolished segregation in education; introducted a National Insurance and Social Security scheme; improved health services; accelerated industrial development; and considerable expansion of the tourist industry.
Sir Grantley Adams (1898-1971)
The first Premier of Barbados and the only Prime Minister of the now defunct West Indies Federation. Adams, a highly respected lawyer, was a mastery of debate on the floor of the House, where he fought for a better life for the under-privileged masses and for establishing social justice across all ethnic and economic classes.
Bussa (???? - 1816)
Led Barbados' longest slave revolt in April 1816 against racist and oppressive whiteBarbadian planters. Born a free man in Africa, but was captured and brought to Barbados as a slave.
Sarah Ann Gill (1795-1866)
Stood up against the planters who succeeded in ousting the Methodist missionaries from Barbados, she opened her home as a church and kept the faith going, against physical abuse.
Samuel Jackman Prescod (1806-1871)
Renowned polititian, humanitarian and journalist.
Elected on June 6, 1843, as the the first non-White to sit in the House of Assembly.
Founding member and Leader of Liberal Party.
Sir Frank Walcott (1916-1999)
An international figure in trade unionism recognised as a forceful, reasonable negociator and a progressive leader.
He served as President of the Caribbean Congress of Labour for three terms and was an Executive of the Board of the International Confederation of Free Trade Unions.
Charles Duncan O'Neal (1879-1936)
A medical doctor of the privileged class, he dedicated most of his working life to the poor.
He was the first black activist in this century to agitate for free education and free dental care for children; improved housing; and abolition of the infamous Located Labourers' System and the Masters and Servants Act.
An outstanding sportsman and a legend in cricket. Sir Garfield rose from the back streets to become Captain of the West Indies team and is still regarded as the world's greatest all-rounder. He continues to be a role model also for millions of youngsters beyond the shores of Barbados.
Clement Osbourne Payne (1904-1941)
A Barbadian pioneer in the Caribbean trade union movement and an outspoken critic of politics and the planter class. His firy outspoken speaches got him excelled from Barbados, which lead to days of rioting. A subsequent Commission of Inquiry in the UK (The Moyne Commission), determined that all of his charges against the island's rulers were accurate. Its report called for the reforms which Payne had proposed, including the introduction of trade union legislation.
Sir Hugh Springer (1913-1994)
Barbados' third native Governor-General. He worked in a variety of professional and political capacities, including being a Member of the House of Assembly; General Secretary of the Barbados Labour Party; Acting Governor and Commander-in-Chief of Barbados, as well as serving as Director, Commonwealth Education Liaison Unit; Commonwealth Assistant Secretary-General and Secretary-General of the Association of Commonwealth Universities.