Situated two km west of the Buff Bay River, near the base of the Blue Mountains in the parish of St. George (now Portland), the ruins of Orange Vale plantation reminds us of the agony of Jamaica's legacy of enslavement. To the immediate east of Orange Vale's boundary lies property belonging to the Moore Town Maroons. Orange Vale operated from the late 1700s until its abandonment in 1847 and was an example of the thriving mono-crop coffee industry that supplemented the enslavement economy of "king sugar," once common in the mountainous regions of Jamaica.
The site was initially owned by John Elmslie, a "London proprietor," from 1782. Although shaded under the cover of large tree branches and heavily covered in vines, the extensive and well-preserved ruins of the plantation were clearly visible. Except for the occasional tourist adventurous enough to make the trek to the site, the plantation ruins have remained relatively intact and untouched. The isolation of the site has contributed to site integrity and the potential for future archaeological research appeared to be high.
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