The history of Trinidad

The history of Trinidad

The history of Trinidad and Tobago begins with the first indigenous settlements on the island of the Indians of South America. In century XIV a new group is established in Tobago introducing new cultures, which would give rise to mayoide culture.

The Mayan tribes were the tribes that met the Europeans upon their arrival in Trinidad and Tobago. The pottery and craftsmanship of this culture was so precious that it survived until the nineteenth century, when they were assimilated by the Trinidadian society. From that moment they joined the Arawak and the Caribbean.

It must be said that the Spanish colonizers also exterminated a large part of the Mayoid culture within the framework of the so-called encomienda system. This system was really a form of slavery, since the indigenous people were forced to work for the colonizers in exchange for their protection and conversion to Christianity.

The oldest indigenous group in Trinidad and Tobago is the community of Santa Rosa, located in the town of Arima, although in recent years new groups have also emerged of enormous antiquity.

Trinidad and Tobago were discovered by Christopher Columbus in the course of his third trip to the Americas in 1498. Tobago has belonged over the centuries to the British, French, Dutch and Spanish hands until 1797, which he paid to the French. In 1888 Trinidad and Tobago were united under the same crown, and did not obtain their independence until 1962, forming a republic in 1976.

From 1783 French settlers with their slaves began to emigrate to Trinidad, but in 1797 the British took the island, and in 1806 they brought the first Chinese community to the island to work. The Treaty of Amiens of 1802 certified the British possession of Trinidad and Tobago, although it remained in dispute until the definitive Treaty of Paris of 1814.

After the abolition of British slavery in 1807, the landlords had to look for new labor, which caused that Trinidad and Tobago was in 1811 the country with the most black population of the Caribbean. Up to Trinidad came even workers from Calcutta and China, sent to work in the Caribbean plantations.

It was not until 1888 when the two islands, separated by 18 kilometers, were united under the same crown. This is how the story of one of the most paradisiacal Caribbean islands has been written.

Michael Bach
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