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Jamaica's National Heroes

10/13/05

Permalink 12:40:16 am, by Melba
Categories: Culture

Jamaica's National Heroes

With all the talk of Heritage week in Jamaica a lot of focus is being given to our National Heroes. These persons Paul Bogle, George William Gordon, Nanny, Samuel Sharpe, Sir Alexander Bustamante, Norman Washington Manley and Marcus Mosiah Garvey all helped to bring about social and political freedom to the people of Jamaica.
Every year we take time out on National Heroes Day to pay homage to our seven heroes.
There is always much excitement created at the National Heroes Park in Kingston as we acknowledge the sacrifices made by these persons. National Heroes Day, Monday October 17, 2005 is fast approaching and I wonder how many of us really remember the true significance of the day. Or do we simply see it as a day off work.

Follow up:

Sure we all studied about our seven heroes in school. We all had to do a project on them, at one time or another. Then of course all of us mothers had to do it again with our children when they got their project. Yet the other day I heard a program where the interviewer asked the public to say something about our heroes and most of the adults could only give the names. The children were able to say much more.
Is it that we have forgotten the struggles fought by our heroes? Today I have tried to sum up as briefly as possible information on our heroes to help us all to remember what they did to change the course of Jamaica’s history. Their sacrifices which took us out of slavery, inspired determination for independence, gave us the freedom of choice and sought to make us equal.

Paul Bogle, birth date uncertain died 1865. A Baptist Deacon in Stony Gut, St. Thomas Bogle spent his time educating and training the members of his congregation. He became involved in the peoples’ struggle for justice and led the Morant Bay Rebellion in 1865. George William Gordon was born the son of a planter and one of his slaves in Cherry Garden Estate, St. Andrew in1820 and died 1865. He was a free coloured, land owner and a member of the House of Parliament. An associate of Paul Bogle , Gordon was arrested for conspiracy when the Morant Bay Rebellion broke out. The Morant Bay Rebellion and the resultant deaths of Bogle and Gordon marked the beginning of a new era in Jamaica.
Nanny of the Maroons, our only female National Hero was the leader of her village, Nanny Town in Portland, Jamaica. She was a fearless leader who led her people against the English Oppressors in the early 18th Century. Her exact year of birth or death is not known however she is believed to have died at the hands of the English around 1734.
Samuel Sharpe also called ‘Daddy’ Sharpe born 1801 and died 1832. A Deacon at the Burchell Baptist Church in Montego Bay, Sharpe traveled to different estates in St. James educating slaves about Christianity and Freedom. He led the Christmas Rebellion in 1831 which started at Kensington Estate in St. James and lasted for eight days. Sharpe was eventually captured and hung at the Parade in Montego Bay ( now renamed Sam Sharpe Square).
Sir Alexander Bustamante born 1884 and died 1977. He started the Industrial Trade Union in 1938 and spent 17 months in jail following labour riots. Bustamante became Jamaica’s first Chief Minister, a position he held until 1954. In 1954 he was knighted by the queen. The Instrument of Independence was received by Bustamante from Princess Margaret at the first session of Parliament after Jamaica was granted full independence on August 6, 1962.
Norman Washington Manley born 1893 in Roxborough, Manchester and died 1969.He was an athlete, scholar, lawyer and politician. He founded the People’s National Party. Along with Sir Alexander Bustamante, Manley advocated for full Universal Adult Suffrage in 1944. In 1955 Manley was elected Chief Minister.
Marcus Mosiah Garvey born 1887 in St. Ann and died 1940. He was a Black Nationalist and politician and became famous worldwide as a leader. Garvey sought improvement for all black people and was the founder of the Universal Negro Improvement Association (UNIA).

After all our heroes did for the people of Jamaica it’s very sad to see what is happening today in our beautiful island. We need to fight to keep it free. Have a peaceful Heroes Day.
Nuff Love.

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Bruk Pocket Jamaican

"Recently, this Jamaican won the 10 million special lottery for a dollar. As soon as the office of the Lottery Corporation was open on the following day, he was there to collect his winnings.

Graciously, he presented his winning ticket to the clerk and in his best English uttered his request "Me cum fi collect the 10 millian dallars, si me ticket ya".

After reviewing and checking the ticket with his manager, the clerk returned and requested on how he would like his payments. The Jamaican replied "Mi wan all a de moni now". "Unfortunately, Sir" the nervous clerk responded, "The procedures are that we can only give you one million now and the balance equally over the next 20 years".

Furious and agitated, the Jamaican asked for the manager, who re-iterated "Sir, my assistant is correct, it is the regulation of the corporation that we initially pay you one million dollars now with the balance paid to you equally over the next 20 years".

Outraged, the Jamaican slammed his hand on the desk and shouted in anger, "Oonu tek me fi idiat, me wan all a de moni now or oonu gi me bak me rass dallar!!"

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