TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO- It is a month-long celebration every June to honor and celebrate America’s rich and diverse culture, which also includes the Caribbean-American population.
It is members of this community who have not only contributed to the evolution of American culture but also the development of the nation in science and medicine. In addition, the U.S. is grateful to many Caribbean-Americans for their services. To educate people about Caribbean-American culture and history, this month is devoted to celebrating the contributions of Caribbean-Americans.
HISTORY OF CARIBBEAN-AMERICAN HERITAGE MONTH-JUNE
It was not that long ago that many Caribbean nations were directly under U.S. political control, which made their immigration into America much easier. During the 19th century, the earliest immigrants to the U.S. were mostly guest workers from the British West Indies program, who worked in agriculture, or political exiles from Cuba.
Migration increased to a great extent when U.S. companies began recruiting English-speaking workers from former English colonies like Jamaica. During this period, many Caribbean people fled political instability and sought refuge in the U.S. As a result of the U.S.’s success as a nation, many Caribbean people emigrated to the U.S.
Among them were skilled craftsmen, poets, doctors, inventors, and other individuals who greatly contributed to several professions in America at the time. Among the renowned names are Alexander Hamilton – the first Secretary of Treasury and one of the Founding Fathers, Celia Cruz, who is best known for her salsa music, the famous baseball player Robert Clemente, and several others who have left a mark on American history.
In addition to its role as a trade partner, the U.S. is a major employer in the Caribbean. In honor of these talented individuals and the positive relations, the country has developed with the Caribbean, the month National Caribbean-American Month was formed.
Although immigration increased before the 20th century, it has declined since then. The majority of immigrants come from Cuba, the Dominican Republic, Jamaica, Haiti, and Trinidad and Tobago.
Dr. Claire A. Nelson founded the month, which was first celebrated by the Institute of Caribbean Studies across the country in 2000.
Nevertheless, the initiative to declare June as National Caribbean-American Month began in 2004 when a legislative bill was passed by Congresswoman Barbara Lee. As part of the resolution, former President George W. Bush signed a proclamation naming June as National Caribbean American Month.
The contributions of the Caribbean are brought to the fore during this month, and people are also reminded of the great Caribbean cuisine, their music, and the massive parades of Caribbean- Americans. During this time of year, the country is treated to a blast from the past, followed by a lot of entertainment.