St. John USVI Places: Cathrineberg
Cathrineberg is located on Johns Head Road just about 100 yards north off Centerline Road. The windmill and surrounding ruins are the property of the National Park and may be visited by the public. The Cathrineberg windmill has been restored and is in excellent condition. Beneath it is an old stone warehouse with arched passageways.
The horsemill, across the road from the windmill has been converted to a cistern that used to serve as a fresh water pond containing attractive aquatic plants, until it was allowed to crumble and decay. The remains of the sugar factory and rum still are near the intersection of Centerline Road and John Head Road.
Either by design or by geographical coincidence, the windmills at Cathrineberg, Susanaberg and Peace Hill are in perfect alignment.
Look for the tiny sensitive plants near the road in front of the windmill. They will react to your touch by closing their leaves.
The 150-acre Cathrineberg plantation was taken up by Judith Ann Delicat in 1718 just after the Danish colonization of St. John. The Delicat family also started up two other plantations that same year, Jochumsdahl A and Jochumsdahl B. Both were 75 acres and adjoined Cathrineberg. These plantations were eventually consolidated into one 300-acre property known variously as Jochumsdahl/Cathrineberg, Cathrineberg or Herman Farm.
By 1721, Cathrineberg was harvesting sugarcane and the following year a sugar factory was completed. In 1797, at the peak of the sugar boom, 107 people lived at Cathrineberg. One hundred fifty acres were devoted to sugar and 150 acres to other crops. There was no unimproved land on the plantation.
Sugar declined as an important crop during the nineteenth century and Cathrineberg discontinued production in 1896. By then, most of the estate was devoted to stock raising. By 1915, Cathrineberg had ceased operations. During the 1940s, an American named Cory Bishop operated a small farm on the estate.
Click here for a REALLY COOL interactive panorama of the Catherineberg Windmill. Look up, down, around, passageway level, top level, closer, farther - check it out!!!