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Remembering Our Heritage: Dominica Observes Kalinago Week 2019

by Karen Rollins Sep 9, 2019

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Photo Credit: Discover Dominica

Kalinago (or Carib) Week 2019 gets under way in Dominica from 15-21 September.

This week of activities is held every year in recognition of the Carib War on 19 September 1930, which resulted in the deaths of two Kalinago men, Dudley John and Royer Frederick.

The men died when the Kalinago community was accused of engaging in illegal trade with the neighbouring French territories of Marie Galante and Guadeloupe and raided by the Windward Island Police Force.

The subsequent violence led to Dudley and Royer being shot dead. Three others were also injured.

The anniversary of the Carib War has been observed in Dominica every year since 1981.

Kalinago Week has become a vital opportunity to honour the country’s indigenous people who made their home on the island before European colonisers.

Photo Credit: Discover Dominica

The Kalinago originated from South America and are believed to be the last remaining tribe of pre-Columbian Carib Indians.

Today, Dominica’s Kalinago people predominantly live on the island’s east coast in 3,700 acres of territory which was allocated to them in 1903.

Events held during Kalinago Week include a youth rally as well as the annual Miss Kalinago and Princess Natari competitions.

The week is a rich cultural experience which provides a deeper understanding of the connection between Dominica’s past and the present.

Sources: Kalinago Territory / Dominica’s Division of Culture / Discover Dominica