Celebrating Jamaican heritage
This week, we continue our journey as we flip through the pages of the rich history of Jamaica. A collaborative initiative of the Sunday Gleaner Arts and Education section with the National Museum of Jamaica, Institute of Jamaica.
These Post-Emancipation dishes, more commonly known as Creole Ceramics were introduced to the English market in the late 19th century. They formed part of the early tourist-type material used to sensitise visitors to native cultures such as Jamaica.
These wares featured stylised caricatures of the 'happy native', reflecting the stereotypical notion of the time. The aim was twofold: to introduce tourists to native culture and to dispel any fears visitors may have had about uprisings or rebellions, particularly after the Morant Bay Rebellion in 1865.
These Creole Dishes were mass produced in England. Production-oriented English ceramicists and "manufactures" were always alert to new marketing opportunities and these became popular commercial items. Some dishes were purely ornamental to amuse, while others were elegant dinnerware. Hand-painted in colour with floral, frieze-like motifs, they were inscribed with Creole sayings - patois playing a major role in the attraction.
The inscription on this jug reads:
"My Fada's Hope,
My Mada's Joy,
My pretty litty
Did you know?
Tourism in Jamaica began in the latter part of the 19th century when persons started coming to Jamaica to escape the cold winters in England and North America. The first tourist hotels were built in Montego Bay and Port Antonio. The now-defunct Myrtle Bank Hotel in Kingston was built in 1892. In those early days, tourism was limited largely to the rich, the old, and the few.
Gift to the nation Candlesticks from Trinidad and Tobago
These mahogany candlesticks were presented to the Most Honourable Hugh Lawson Shearer, former prime minister of Jamaica, by the Government of Trinidad and Tobago on the occasion of his official visit to the twin-island republic in August of 1968.
Subsequent to the prime minister's visit to Trinidad and Tobago, the gift of an elaborate case made of samples of Trinidad woods was presented to the Institute of Jamaica in October 1970 by the prime minister.
The sculptures depict the National Birds of Trinidad and Tobago, which are also featured on coat-of-arms of Trinidad and Tobago, representing each island separately. the Scarlet Ibis represents Trinidad and the Cocrico bird, Tobago.
Did you know?
Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago were the only two island states that gained independence in 1962.
Trinidad and Tobago celebrates independence on August 31.