Meet the Jamaican Maroons. They are the descendants of African slaves who formed free settlements in Jamaica’s mountainous interior during the slavery era.
As early as the 1600s, Maroon communities throughout the Americas were able to flee slave owners and form their own free settlements.
Jamaican Maroons are perhaps most notorious for surviving countless threats to their sovereignty, and rebelling against British rule by frequently raiding plantations for food and weapons and freeing other slaves for a period of over 150 years.
The legendary Queen Nanny (also known as “Granny Nanny”) and her Maroon brothers Cudjoe, Accompong, Johnny and Quao all went on to form their own Maroon communities, fighting and defeating the British every step of the way.
In 1976, the Jamaican government declared Queen Nanny a National Heroine, and her likeness is featured on the $500 Jamaican bill.
Today, Jamaican Maroons continue to live separately from mainstream Jamaican society, choosing to live amongst themselves, safeguarding their culture including their language, Kromanti. Maroon settlements can be found in Accompong Town in St. Elizabeth, Scott’s Hall in St. Mary and Charles Town and Moore Town in Portland.
Learn more about the Maroons in these videos:
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