Earle Edward Seaton
Lawyer, international jurist. Born February 29, 1924

Earle Seaton’s career as an international lawyer took him from his native Bermuda to East Africa, the United States and the hallowed halls of the United Nations.

He possessed sterling academic credentials, having earned, on top of his law degree, a PhD in International Relations from the University of Southern California.

With his appointment in 1972 as Puisne Judge, he became Bermuda’s first black Supreme Court judge, but he made his greatest contribution in Tanzania, where he opened a legal practice straight out of law school and rose to prominence as that country’s legal adviser and United Nations representative.

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Riot breaks out at BELCO
February 2, 1965

A strike by Bermuda Industrial Union (BIU) workers for union recognition at the Bermuda Electric Light Company (BELCO) escalated into a full-scale riot. The strike began on January 19, and tensions rose as the days passed with no resolution in sight.

The violence that broke out on February 2 saw police clash with striking workers. Several union officers, including Dr. Barbara Ball, were arrested, and subsequently tried in Supreme Court. Policeman Ian Davies sustained serious injuries, from which he never fully recovered.

The strike pitted primarily black Bermudian workers against the powerful white merchants who ran BELCO’s board. A recognition ballot was eventually held, which the BIU lost. But other companies moved quickly to hold recognition ballots sought by the BIU. Historians agree that while the BIU lost the battle at BELCO, it had won the war.

Read Larry Burchall’s experience of that fateful day.

Police Officers on standby opposite the main entrance to BELCO on February 2nd 1965.

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