"In this place dwelt Horatio Nelson. You who tread his footprints remember his glory"
By 1905 the dockyard was closed and Port Royal became even less important. Many of the inhabitants whose work had been with H. M. Dockyard left and removed to Kingston.
The above photograph, from a postcard, is of the Garrison at Port Royal, by the famous French photographer, Adolphe Duperly, who took many photographs in Jamaica.
My grandfather, William Dey Smedmore, was born in Port Royal ... more about that in another post ... and worked as an Admiralty writer at H. M. Dockyard. He married Amanda Brown, whose family also lived in Port Royal. (Amanda's father, Daniel Elias Brown was a shipwright.) William and Amanda had nine children, seven of whom were born in Port Royal: the first three, Sylvia, Victor and Norman, were all born at Sime Street, while the next four, Elma, Owen, Maud (my mother) and Rodney, were born at Fisher's Row. Rodney was born in 1896, and then along came Lucius, the eighth who was born in Kingston at 49 Beeston Street, which remained the family home until the 1950s; Julian the last was also born there. So, sometime between 1896 and 1899 the family moved from Port Royal. By then, of course, my grandfather had retired from his post at the Dockyard. He would have been about 60 years old and, according to family story, did not work again.