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American Philosophical Society
18th Century Climate of Jamaica Derived from the Journals of Thomas Thistlewood, 1750-1786 (Transaction 93-2)
Transactions 93 No. 2
Thomas Thistlewood is known for his daily records of life on a slave plantation in eighteenth-century Jamaica. Thistlewood's previously unexamined weather journal is shown here to be the most important written record from the Earth's tropical regions available. His observation methods are superior to most of his contemporaries & provide a high-quality daily record of more than 35 years. Comparison of his records with modern weather records indicates that Thistlewood's Jamaica was a much cooler & moister place than in modern times. A 252-year record of tropical storm & hurricane frequency in Jamaica reveals that the late 20th-century minimum in storm frequency is unprecedented.
John Haygarth, FRS
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