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Dr. Eric Willams

The first Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago
The first Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago

I was born here, and here I stay, with the people
of Trinidad and Tobago, who educated me free of
charge for nine years at Queens Royal College  and for five years at Oxford, who have made me
whatever I am, and who have been or might be
at any time the victims of the very pressure which
I have been fighting against… I am going to let
down my bucket where I am, right here with you
in the British West Indies.”

From Public Lecture at Woodford
Square, 21 June 1955

Born on September 25, 1911, Eric Williams was the son of Elisa and Henry Williams, a minor Post Office official in Trinidad. He was educated at Queen’s Royal College and won the Island Scholarship to Oxford University. At Oxford, he placed first in the First Class of the History Honours School and received his Doctor of Philosophy degree in 1938. His doctoral thesis, The Economic Aspect of the West Indian Slave Trade and Slavery, was considered an important contribution to research on the subject and was published in 1944 in Williams’ Capitalism and Slavery. Much of Williams’ educational pursuits at Queen’s Royal College and Oxford University is documented in his book, Inward Hunger: The Education of a Prime Minister.

Read More on Dr. Williams: users.rc.com