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Bodden Town

Bodden Town, Grand Cayman, is the former capital of the Cayman Islands and centre of the largest district in the Cayman Islands. It is situated on a natural harbour and a coral reef. The first settlement was named after a government leader, William Bodden. Once ravaged by pirates, this village is known for its remains of a 4mi wall and cannon. Bodden Town has a population of 10,341 (2010 census). Its top attractions include the Mission House, which features the lifestyle of early Caymanian settlers. Bodden Town is also considered the fastest growing district in the islands in terms of resident population.HistoryThe first town of importance on Grand Cayman, Bodden Town founded in the late 18th century and was originally known as 'South Side'. Because its natural harbour, Bodden Town was attractive to both merchant and trading ships as well as Caribbean pirates. When first visited in 1773 by George Gauld, a British Navy surveyor, the town's population was already at approximately 200—roughly half the population of the entire island. Commissioned to survey Grand Cayman Island's coastline, Gauld noted the majority of residents had the surname "Bodden", all descendants of Isaac Bodden, a soldier from Oliver Cromwell's army. Local lore states that it was at the time of Gauld's visit that South Side was renamed "Bodden Town".For many years, Bodden Town served as the seat of Cayman Islands government. Likewise, it was the home of the Chief Magistrate of the islands, William Bodden; during his time in office between 1798 and 1823, the first roads were completed. It was also during this time period and into the mid-19th century that a jail was established and the first court on the island was held. Historical records for the island state that, "In 1839, the prisoners at Pedro Castle were transferred to the Guard House at Bodden Town."
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