‘... the white limestone formation, which occupies such a considerable portion of Jamaica, would seem, if we only take into consideration the character of its fossil organic remains, in some measure referable [to the Tertiary], Still however I have many doubts upon the subject; and therefore, while I class it for the present under the above head, I wish it to be understood as merely a temporary arrangement’ (De la Beche, 1827, p. 169). Henry De la Beche would be surprised to discover that his ‘temporary arrangement’ has proved to be remarkably persistent and the white limestone formation (now White Limestone Group) is the oldest name of a lithostratigra-phic unit in common use in Jamaica. The White Limestone Group is today correlated with the Middle Eocene to Middle/Upper Miocene on multiple biostratigraphic criteria. De la Beche’s desire to make lithostratigraphic correlations between Jamaica and western Europe, particularly the British Isles, would have had him compare his White Limestone Formation with the Zechstein or Jurassic limestones of Europe. He was saved from this error by some notable ‘fossil organic remains’, the giant gastropod Campanile, which occurs in the approximately coeval rocks of the London Clay, Paris Basin and the Eocene limestones of Jamaica. This represents probably the first example, albeit grudgingly performed, of intercontinental biostratigraphic correlation.