The connection lives

bajaninnygabbyrecognisedDr. Anthony Carter’s Emmerton is song about a community that was displaced by might (government bulldozer) and dispossessed of their identity and roots. This concept is repeated in Jack with the removal of a custom — bathing on the beach as the reference point.

While this community was moved against the will of its members, there is a community of planters and others, who immigrated to South Carolina, to expand their fortunes.

Today, little is discussed about the community of Emmerton. However, in South Carolina, a renewed conversation — featuring the role of the Barbadian model in the development of the North America’s South — is emerging, to the extent that we should not be surprised if the conservative south of America say: “I grow up hey in Carolina, don’t know nuting ’bout little Britannia, tell Barbados, dah history is mine.”

As part of the current discussion in South Carolina, between September 7 and October 7, 2013, there will be a series of events titled: The Spirit of Place. The presentations will include a lecture by Dr. Henry Fraser and a panel discussion on slave dwellings and houses.

It is no accident that more people are listening and talking.

In June 2012, Rhoda Green, the Honorary Consul of Barbados to the Carolinas established the Carolinas Legacy Foundation. Green has been one of the historians and gate keepers of the Barbados-Carolinas Connection.

Truth be told, the Barbados and the Carolinas Legacy Foundation’s website – Blog, and, its Facebook link have become a marketplace where historical papers have become the subject of provocative debate and discussion.

When asked about the progress of the foundation, a humble but excited Green said:

“Something is really happening. The response has been beyond any expectations. I can only thank the Lord for his mercies and gifts. It is clear that as we revisit the past there are many lessons that we can learn, especially how to do things as we go forward. Clearly, it is an opportunity to also promote Barbados and at the same time Barbadians should also look at their past.”

Honorary Consul to The Carolinas, Ms Rhoda Green left receiving award from Minister Mclean last year.
Honorary Consul to The Carolinas, Ms Rhoda Green left receiving award from Minister Mclean last year.

Green introduced a story about the role of photography in documenting the history of slaves that appeared on the Facebook link, with this lead:

“When the tentacles of a shared history (Barbados and the Carolinas) wrapped themselves around me, I became captive. I remember some learned one saying the shared influences have all but dissipated. Not so! One would be surprise to learn how far those tentacles reach and how different groups understand the significance of that connection. Here’s more history.”

One of many links that the website provides is perspectives on the book To Hell or Barbados, which tells the story of the ethnic cleansing of the Irish and critiqued by Irish World as follows:

“O’Callaghan’s description of 17th century Barbados is a powerful portrait of a society as brutal, corrupt and unjust as anything the 20th century has to offer. Yet it is precisely societies like colonial Barbados and Virginia which lie at the root of our modern world. That is why To Hell or Barbados is such a valuable book.”

Listen to other views of the role of Barbados in the development of the Carolinas as published in an article by Michael titled Caribbean Origins of the Southern Plantation System:

“It was the Barbadian model, though in a less extreme form and combined with a larger White settler population, which enabled Carolina to rapidly become a wealthy society” and

“Barbados emerged as the first English Caribbean headquarters of the Atlantic slave-based sugar plantation complex. In so doing, it attained a reputation as the richest little spot in the New World”.

And if you are interested in Trivia, listen to one possible origin of “ecky becky” as published on the foundation’s Facebook page:

“The word ecky-becky can be traced back to before Africans ever left Africa to Barbados. In one Igbo community in West Africa a French man named, Eque Beque, or something similar, tried to colonise said Igbo people but failed for he had no money or army to do so and from then on these Igbo people called any poor Caucasian, Ecky-becky. This word would later be taken, with these people, to Barbados as they were captured along with other African tribes and brought into slavery.”

Record that the mission of the Barbados and the Carolinas Foundation is to highlight, research, archive, facilitate and promote opportunities for Barbados and the Carolinas.

Ultimately, this article is an invitation for any person who is interested in our history to visit the website or join the Facebook conversation and a reminder that we have a history of exporting people.

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