Flynn Falls in and forJamaica

18 Sep

A Series Look at the History of Errol’s Landfall On and Falling In Love with Jamaica:

— Tim


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  1. Gentleman Tim

    September 18, 2017 at 9:16 pm

    Kingston, Jamaica – January 2, 1947

    “Errol Flynn On Yacht In Jamaica”

    “Movie actor Errol Flynn arrived here yesterday aboard his yacht Zaca with a party of guests. The Zaca was slightly damaged when she ran into heavy weather en route from Columbia, and will undergo repairs during the five days Flynn expects to remain in Kingston.”

    Kingston, 1940s:


  2. David DeWitt

    September 19, 2017 at 3:46 am

    Love these two photos!

  3. Paula

    September 19, 2017 at 4:15 am

    Oh my goodness

  4. Gentleman Tim

    September 19, 2017 at 9:03 am

    Kingston, Jamaica – January 2, 1947

    Jamaica Gleaner – by ‘Hyacinth’

    “I Meet Errol Flynn”

    Looking every bit as handsome and debonair, every inch the dashing hero of Hollywood motion pictures who is idolized by women fans the world over, was top-ranking cinema actor Errol Flynn who arrived in Kingston Harbor on his yacht, Zaca, yesterday morning.

    An hour spent with Errol Flynn in the cocktail lounge at Myrtyle Bank Hotel is an experience I shall never forget. It happened in the cool of yesterday afternoon soon after a boat from his palatial yacht had set him ashore in Jamaica. Only the thought that an imperious news editor back in the Gleaner office was waiting on my copy made me decide to terminate the happy interlude so soon.

    An extraordinary kindliness, almost amounting to chivalry, sets you at ease the moment Errol Flynn shakes your hand. He is the kind of a ‘guy’ who makes a girl feel he is sincerely glad to be with her.

    Most of what we talked about would appear silly in print – simple, everyday talk about the things of life which seem to be the same in every clime. For instance, Mr. Flynn found an early opportunity to guess whether or not ‘Hyacinth’ was married. Then, after learning that it was a fact, he explained that his conclusion was based on a purely psychic process.


    As we sipped champagne the great actor told me he was greatly struck by the kindliness of the Jamaican people. (Mr. and Mrs. Abe Issa and party were entertaining him at the time, informally in the cocktail lounge.)

    He spoke of the movies and how well he liked Jamaica. He insisted that he was on holiday and interviews weren’t important, yet with positvely unsurpassed charm proceeded to ask the reporter questions and at the same time allow himself to be asked questions in turn.

    “How tall are you, Mr. Flynn?” I asked. Quick as a shot the answer came, “I am a short man., ma’am.”

    To another one, “Where were you born?” The reply was “I can tell you the latitude!”

    All this wittily spiken and with the same attractive smile which has caused so many a female to thump excitedly when they see it in the screen.

    Mr. Flynn will be on the island for a few days during which time he will no doubt visit some of the country parishes and holiday resorts.



  5. shangheinz

    September 19, 2017 at 4:27 pm

    Live from Flynn’s Island:…

    • Gentleman Tim

      September 19, 2017 at 7:00 pm

      Beautiful, islandheinz. Makes me want to go raftin’ like Flynn!

  6. Gentleman Tim

    September 19, 2017 at 6:47 pm

    January 3, 1947

    Kingston, Jamaica

    “Film Fans Mob Errol Flynn at Myrtle Bank”

    Errol Flynn came ashore from his yacht at the Myrtle Bank Hotel at noon yesterday – and nearly created a riot. As the handsome, dashing screen star entered the lobby., a waiting army of female hotel fans, who had impatiently been waiting his coming ashore, mobbed him in traditional style.

    Since news of his arrival spread through Kingston and St. Andrew yesterday, local cinemaddicts have been concentrating on the Myrtle Bank in an effort to secure autographs, snapshots, or just look at the daring he-man lover of the screen in the flesh.

    Gathering yesterday morning a battery of woman fans filled the lobby and verandahs of the hotel. “Bobby-soxers” were in the majority, but there were lots of grownups, too. Impatiently they looked out across the hotel lawn to the pier, and beyond it, where the Zaca rode at anchor on the quiet Caribbean.
    Came 12 o’clock and still no sign of the tall hero of Captain Blood, Elizabeth and Essex and other screen successes which have thrilled local audiences. The now-retired movie actor, who arrived here on Wednesday, stayed aboard his yacht this afternoon, along with members of his party.


    Suddenly there was a sensation. The word went up that he was coming. Large as life, and as handsome as he appears on screen, Errol Flynn walked into the lobby. Something like a cross between a scream and a sigh issued from a hundred lips. The actor smiled at the demonstration.

    When they crowded around him, however, he decide it was too much of a good thing. Quickly getting into a waiting motorcar, he left the hotel and did not return until during the evening. The fans, torn between partial satisfaction and partial disappointment, went away.

    Presence of the popular actor, whose exploits, on and off the screen, have won him wide mention, has made Myrtle Bank the focus of local attention. Busiest switchboard in town is the PBX at Myrtle Bank, where the telephone operator spent half a day yesterday saying, “Yes, he is here. No, he hasn’t come ashore yet.”


    No less busy has been the desk, where the clerks have been equally engaged in answering queries as to the whereabouts of Mr. Flynn. Autograph books and baby cameras have been greatly in evidence, while the staff have been kept on their toes coping with the extra demand on their time as a result of the increased number of visitors to the hotel.

    So far, Mr. Flynn’s fans are to remain in town for a week, and then go out into the country, perhaps to Montego Bay. His yacht is due to go on drydock for overhauling while he stays ashore, and identifies himself more closely with local life.

    Last night Mr. Flynn and his party were guests at a private cocktail party in St. Andrew, and later went to the Colony Club where he was entertained with a specially-prepared native floor show, featuring leading local entertainers.*

    * Though the article does not report so, it is highly likely these “leading local entertainers” at the Colony Club included the Eric Dean Orchestra, depicted below:…


    • Gentleman Tim

      September 19, 2017 at 7:08 pm

      Here’s Nat King Cole at the Colony Club, which was owned by Dudley MacMillan, pictured in the below link with Flynn and Abe Issa. (In ’53, Cole was paid $10,000 for a three nights work at the Colony.)…

  7. Gentleman Tim

    September 20, 2017 at 2:33 pm

    January 7, 1947

    “Fans Race to Spanish Town Restaurant to See Errol Flynn”

    There was a race for Lee’s restaurant on Burke Road, Spanish Town Saturday evening last, when news got around that motion picture star Errol Flynn was there. Accompanied by Major Blackwell, he was on his way to Montego Bay.

    A few autograph hunters were rewarded, among whom were the Misses Lee, and the restaurant had one of its menu cards autographed.

    Patrons of the Crystal Theatre have petitioned Ms. Audley Morais to try to get Errol Flynn to make a personal appearance at the theatre .


    Major Blackwell’s wife:…

    Major Blackwell’s son:…

    • Gentleman Tim

      September 20, 2017 at 3:32 pm

      Audley Morais and the History of Jamaican Cinema…

    • Gentleman Tim

      September 20, 2017 at 11:58 pm

      January 6, 1947

      “AT OCHO RIOS”

      Errol Flynn, movie star, paid a surprise visit here on Saturday last. He met many of his admirers. After autographing an album or two, he went on a tour of places of interest, such as Dunlookin and River Sea Inn.


  8. Gentleman Tim

    September 20, 2017 at 3:26 pm

    Friday, January 17, 1947…

  9. Gentleman Tim

    September 21, 2017 at 3:30 pm

    Ian Fleming’s fascinating and now politically-incorrect take on what he contended it took for a white man to enjoy and endure Jamaica. Published in 1952.…

    I wonder how much of this Errol initially recognized, how much he would eventually agree with?…

  10. Gentleman Tim

    September 21, 2017 at 7:46 pm

    January 10, 1947

    Kingston Gleaner, Jamaica

    Night and Day with Hyacinth


    It was Saturday, January 4, and with a party of friends from luxury yacht Zaca, fun-loving Errol Flynn decided to ‘go look see’ what our north coast had to offer in the line of entertainment.

    The place he went was DUNLOOKIN and among other things he did was study off the words of “Carry me ackee go de Linstead Market,” sing other Jamaican songs, enjoy native cuisine, and stimulated “Dunlookiners” with some agile “rug cutting.”

    The movie idol rhapsodized over the scenic beauty of our north coast, thinks it has vast possibilities.

    Among those who were “on spot’ at Dunlookin on Saturday eve were Mr. Norman Marsh and party, Mr. and Mrs. Leslie Marsh and party, the Misses J. and B. Wlson, Mr. W. Johnson, Mssrs. Barry Rose and Lester Marsh, Mr. Goffe and party, Mr. and Mrs. Hall (honeymooners), Mr. and Mrs. Bennet of N.Y. city, Mr. and Mrs. Levy, Dr. and Mrs. Kates, Mr. Robin Willoughby and party.


    Some Dunlookin Mento for “That Man Flynn”, Mon:…


  11. Gentleman Tim

    September 24, 2017 at 1:40 pm

    January 13, 1947


    Errol Flynn, Hollywood movie star, left the island yesterday morning by KLM plane for Port Au Prince, Haiti, on a short visit. He was accompanied by Dr. Otto Roehr and Mr. Wollf Schoenborn*.

    Flynn is visiting the Republic at the invitation of President Dumarsais Estime. He and his party may return here on Wednesday afternoon by KLM plane. When the actor reached the Palisadoes Airport yesterday morning, there was a large crowd of movie fans awaiting him.

    Many had traveled from Kingston in motor cars and on cycles.


    Flynn, however, sat with KLM officials in the terminal building while his plane refueled.

    He told a Gleaner Reporter as he sipped a Jamaica rum punch, “We plan to be back on Wednesday, but may remain for a a longer period.”

    Flynn and his party were seen off by a number of friends, including Charles D’Costa, director of Lascelles deMereago and Co., Ltd., local agents for KLM (Royal Dutch Airlines) and Mr. K.D. Saunders, assistant Manager Palisadoes Airport.

    *Wollf Schoenborn was a/the Major real estate player in the development of Acapulco during Errol’s time there, and beyond.


    The esteemed new President of Haiti:


    The short hop to Haiti:


  12. David DeWitt

    September 25, 2017 at 12:36 am

    This is great stuff Gentleman Tim! I am fascinated by his time in Jamaica. He caused a lot of excitement wherever he went. He even built a race track and stood watching the races from a makeshift wooden tower. And it was a very festive event …

    • Gentleman Tim

      September 25, 2017 at 7:12 pm

      Thank you, David. Flynn was such a magnificent adventurer, wasn’t he! These news accounts from Jamaica really confirm just how amazingly cool and popular he was. Edgy, too. Way ahead of his time.

      Ah, to be in the Old Caribbean, Sailin’ and Explorin’ Like Flynn! Wouldn’t that be grand!……

  13. Gentleman Tim

    September 25, 2017 at 6:33 pm

    January 17, 2017
    Kingston Gleaner

    “Errol Flynn’s Forthright Views On The Jamaica Her Has So Far Seen”

    “One definite impression I have formed while in Jamaica is, viewing the great the great houses on the north side of the country, it seems so amazing that the opinion one forms is that they belong to anpther world,” Errol Flynn declared to the “Gleaner” waterfront reporter yesterday forenoon in an exclusive interview on board his yacht Zaca. The movie star said he knew this statement would not be well received, but that he did not mind it.

    The swashbuckling movie hero of Captain Blood and other Hollywood headliners, who is here for an indefinite stay, awaiting instructions for a couple of pictures he expects to play in, condemned what he described as the feudal system which existed in certain parts of the island he visited.


    Declaring that education was a crying need, and that the people who owned great wealth, and especially those who were enjoying incomes that went from one generation to another, should do something for the people, the film star opined: “I looked around for something the Land Barons could have done, and saw little beyond the feudal life the poor unfortunates were lead and lead.” He emphasized the fact that owners of these great houses owe an obligation to the people to do something for them.”

    “America,” he said, “had a more balanced sense of justice on this matter of social inequality than I have seen in your island.” And added, “in Los Angeles, where I am from, the people are highly generous.”

    On the matter of colour question, Errol Flynn regarded it as “sheer nonsense,” but agreed that “education was the key to breaking the barrier down.”


    Expressing the hope to visit the other side of the island again, when he would spend more time, he surprised the pressman when he stated: “Nearly everyone has advised not to go to Montego Bay.”

    “But, Mr. Flynn,” the Gleaner man said: “You could go yourself, and then form your own impressions.”

    “I will,” he agreed.

    About the raid made on his yacht while he was away, he said he was more concerned about “the poor little devil who was hurt,” than anything else. “What happened to my yacht is likely to occur in any seaport in the world … there are waterfront crooks the world over,” he remarked. “It is the first time such a thing has happened to me, but it is something we expect to take place anytime. In Barbados, they came on board and stole the very brass fittings off the vessel.” He revealed.

    “I am really very sorry for the poor little devil that was hurt. It seems a big price to pay for some gasoline,” he said with a sympathetic look on his face.


    Concerning his stay on the island, the film star said: “Jamaica will be my home for some time. I like the place so much I do not see any reason for moving. Possibly, I will lay my boat up here a while. I have not yet made up my mind where I will leave it. Most likely it will be at Port Antonio.”

    He disclosed he expects to do some work – a couple of pictures -, material for which he waits. Temporary tile for one of the pictures is The Forty-Niners, and the other, The Frontiersman. The story of the latter picture is his. It was written by Arthur Blake, and calls for a lot of production, he says.

    He admitted that since he has been here, he has seen mostly the nice things of the island, and could not be generally critical. Of the places he has visited, he like Ocho Rios best.

    Errol Flynn thinks our girls most charming. He made no secret about it that he has made many friends, and that the hospitality according to him has been very good.


    Asked what he thought of our theatres, he made the surprising disclosure that he does not go to the theatre, and added smilingly, “I am afraid the roof drops on my head.” He was told that the Palace Theatre was roofless.

    “Which of the West Indies do you like best,” the reporter asked the movie star. In a flash he answered, “I like Jamaica best.”

    Questioned as to what is the key-note to the successful actor, Mr. Flynn explained that it is not good looks in the main, but the ability of the actor to project the role he played.

    “I have seen marvelous entertainers,” he said, “who become paralyzed the moment they go before a camera.”


    Concerning his visit to Haiti, he declared that he had a most wonderful time. “The people could not have been nicer or kinder. I was not allowed to buy even a drink,” and this he said was a trifle embarrassing.

    Mr. Flynn was the guest of the Haitian government. He was accompanied by Dr. Otto Roehr and Mr. Wolff Schoenborn.

    The film star spoke highly of his crew, describing them as “good and loyal” to him.

    A few cocktails rounded off the interesting meeting between Mr. Flynn and the Gleaner man.…