Annie Palmer has been discussed here before but I'll give you a short history of my favorite Jamaican ghost story before we get to the next track...
Annie Mae Patterson was born to an English mother and Irish father in Haiti in 1802. Annie's parents both died mysteriously when she was 10 and from that point on was raised by her Haitian nanny who supposedly trained her in voodoo. She came to Jamaica in 1820 in search of a wealthy husband and came across John Palmer who fit the bill nicely. They were soon married and Annie Palmer quickly became the mistress of the Rose Hall Plantation right outside of Montego Bay.
Allegedly, Annie grew bored with her husband and began seeking out lovers. She would select slaves, who she was attracted to and would invite them to come to her chambers at night where she would have their way with them and would have them killed or kill them herself when suspicion or boredom reared its ugly head.
Six years later Annie poisoned her husband John Palmer so that she would become the soul owner and benefactor of the plantation. Supposedly, over the course of the years Annie married and killed two other husbands, acquiring their wealth and continued her illicit affairs with slave men whenever she desired. Oddly, Annie Palmer sealed off the three bedrooms in which her three husbands had died and word began to spread around the plantation that the Great House was haunted.
Her cruelty was legendary... the story says that she would have slaves flogged and beaten for her own amusement and even took them back to the mansion for continued torture when night fell. In 1831, Annie hired a man from England to become her bookkeeper - she was immediately taken by the new man but he had eyes for one of Annie's housekeeper Millicent. The bookkeeper decided to play both sides of the fence, so to speak, and it infuriated Annie. The White Witch cast a spell on Millicent and within 9 days she was dead. Millicent's grandfather, Takoo, who was a powerful voodoo priest and one of Annie's occasional lovers, was incensed by his granddaughter's death and proceeded to storm into her bedroom and strangled her to death.
Well, as you can imagine... the legend of her spirit still haunting the Great House at Rose Hall continues to this day. Countless sightings of ghostly apparitions and odd occurrences throughout the years have fueled the legendary status of Annie Palmer and firmly planted The White Witch Of Rose Hall in the ghostly folklore of Jamaica.
Gloucester "Danny" Hill is a self-taught musician who started in the late 50's performing with a mento group. He won first prizes for his skills in 1962 and 1963 at talent contests held at the Ward Theater in Kingston and it was right after that he recorded the next tune in our Spooktacular for producer Neville Foo Loy in 1964. The song is called appropriately enough, "Annie Palmer" and comes from a 7" on the Top Sound label. A wicked ska tune to spice things up a bit.
"Annie Palmer" by Danny Hill
Jamaican Halloween Spooktacular 2010 - Track Thirteen