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Dutch planters & merchants: Joseph Bourda

Joseph Bourda was a leading Dutch planter who, by 1775, had become a member of the Council of Demerara. In that year the Councils of Demerara and Essequibo were joined in a Combined Council. When in October 1777, the Director-General called a meeting of this  Combined Council, Joseph Bourda — then senior member in Demerara — objected to his holding a meeting at such a critical period, when English privateers might at any moment arrive to pillage the river. The Director-General in reply told him that if they did not come, the Demerara Councillors would be fined a hundred guilders each. [Timehri, Vol 5]

Bourda, John Haslin and Thomas Cuming, all members of the Council, were delegated to negotiate the surrender of the colony to the British in 1781. Bourda served as acting director-general of the colony for a year (March 1784 - February 1785) after the return of the colony to Dutch control. [The Making of Guyana (1974)]

In 1798, Bourda, died in Paris and in 1799 his youngest daughter Maria married Richard Bass Daly jnr, who was also the executor of his estate. Bourda had owned two plantations, Nieuw Aanely and Vlissingen [Caribbeana, Vol 1]. Either before, or soon after, Bourda’s death Vlissingen was laid out to form the new districts of Robbstown and Lacytown.

Plan of that part of George Town Situated on the front Lands of the Plant Vlissingen and distiguished as the Bridge Town, New Town and Columbia Districts being held under the Lease from Heirs of Jo. Bourda Deceased proprietor of said Estate, the whole Surveyed at the request of their Attornies. For the Purpose of ascertaining the present Situation and Boundaries of each Lot or Concession or such parts as the same are non divided into By Joseph Hadeield (sic) Sworn Land Surveyor for the United Colony of Demerary and Esseyucho A.D. 1817.

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