Militaria and Medals relating to Jamaica and the West Indies
Raymond A Brandon (1944 - 2002)
RAYMOND A. BRANDON (1944-2002) was a collector from a very young age. Ray was born, raised and spent his life in Jamaica. His early collecting interest was in Commonwealth stamps and coins. Eventually his interests broadened to all things Jamaican.
After being discovered by Columbus in 1494 and being occupied by the Spaniards until 1655 when England became the new occupiers, Jamaica has a varied and rich history of military dominance by both Spain and England. The British military had a presence in Jamaica until Independence in 1962.
Ray had a keen interest in all things relating to the military; from cannons (of which he had several) hand weapons, prints relating to the military and medals. It was his habit to thoroughly research the person who was the recipient of the medals and awards he collected giving more meaning and a personality to that item. He spent hours doing research and consequently had a vast knowledge and excellent recall for details pertaining to events, people and battles related to the items he collected. He spent many days searching through the dry river bed in Spanish Town, the original capital of Jamaica under the Spanish, with great success. His collections of coins, cut and counter-marked coins, books, maps, prints, old photographs, post cards, items relating to plantation life, furniture, and silver was quite amazing. During his years of collecting and researching people and artifacts, he wrote articles for the bulletin of The Jamaica Historical Society, and other publications. He served the Jamaica Historical Society as president and was also an active volunteer with the Jamaica Constabulary and a member of the National Skeet Shooting Team. He was a member of ERIK, a group of collectors from various islands in the Caribbean which concentrated on the cut and countermarked coins of the area who met yearly to share their finds and knowledge. One of the saddest consequences of his sudden passing is that all that knowledge gained during his collecting years and so readily shared with others who had the same interests, is no longer available.