Queen Nanny or Nanny (c. 1685 – c. 1755)
Queen Nanny, a Jamaican national hero, was a well-known leader of the Jamaican Maroons in the 18th century. Nanny was kidnapped from Ghana, West Africa, as a child, and was forced into slavery in Jamaica. Growing up, she was influenced by the Maroons and other leaders of the enslaved Africans. The Maroon people were enslaved Blacks who fled the oppressive plantations and formed their own communities in Jamaica’s interior.
Nanny and her brothers ran away from the plantation and hid in the Blue Mountains area. From there, they led several revolts across Jamaica. Queen Nanny was a well-respected, intelligent spiritual leader who was instrumental in organizing the plans to free enslaved Africans.
For over 30 years she freed more than 800 slaves and helped them settle into Maroon communities. She defeated the British in many battles and despite repeated attacks from the British soldiers, Grandy Nanny’s settlement, called Nanny Town, remained under Maroon control for several years.