St. John's Antigua

The Courthouse at St. John’s Antigua

Antigua is an island in the Leeward Islands which was the center of government of these islands in the Colonial Period. In November 1750, while Gilbert Fleming, the newly appointed Lieutenant General of the Leeward Islands, was addressing the Assembly at the new courthouse, a message was delivered to him about the treasure buried at Norman Island. Without any public statement, he assembled soldiers to sail immediately with him for the Virgin Islands in order secure the treasure which was being recovered by residents from Tortola. He had been told that Owen Lloyd had been the pirate who buried the stolen money. Fleming was already familiar with Lloyd because he had married Christian Caines, the daughter of one of St. Kitts most prominent citizens. Gilbert Fleming owned several plantations at St. Kitts.

Antigua, as the center of government, became the receiving point for the treasure that Fleming rounded up in the Caribbean.  Antigua merchants were hired by the Spanish captain’s insurers to manage its shipment to London.