St. Ann is the largest of Jamaica’s 14 parishes. It is also quite possible the site of the earliest human inhabitation of Jamaica. Taino settlements from as early as 600 AD have been found in St. Ann. The parish is also the site of the first European landfall on Jamaica. Columbus landed in 1494 and the place he returned to four years later, was established as Nueva Sevilla, the country’s first capital.
The main economic activities of St. Ann are farming, bauxite mining, and tourism.
The parish capital is St. Ann’s Bay. Other towns include Discovery Bay, where Columbus landed, Ocho Rios, its main tourism center, and Brown’s Town. St Ann was the birthplace of national hero Marcus Garvey and Reggae superstar, Bob Marley.
The parish is rich in clay deposits and alluvial soil, which both serve to benefit its agriculture industry. Its main rivers are the Rio Nuevo, Wag Water, and White Rivers. The latter two are both sources of hydroelectric power.
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