Today in Heritage History, 1762,  the British fleet arrives at, and occupies the Caribbean Island of Martinique. After only two weeks in port, 250 crew members died after smoking and drinking themselves to death as a result of easy and cheap access to duty-free cigarettes and alcohol. Of the remaining 100 crew members, 50 were bludgeoned to death by fellow crew members for *wearing too much duty-free perfume (particularly) in the tight spaced, and unventilated crews’ sleeping quarters.

* Historians rumored that there was more to the story. Please see the historical reference work: It’s a Sailors Manly Life for Me: An Annotated History of the English Navy’s ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ Policy and it’s Impact on the 18th Century Duty-Free Martinique Murders.

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