Friday, March 31, 2006

A root to us - INDIA

An artifact from the Maha Sabha Indian Caribbean Museum Of Trinidad and Tobago

On Shouter Baptist Liberation Day, we took the opportunity to go to the Temple on the sea, known as The Siewdass Sadhu Shiv Mandir in Waterloo. The mandir is less than ten minutes drive from the stunning statue of Lord Hanuman at the Dattatreya Yoga Centre in Orangefield Road in Carapichaima. Between these two sites, as you drive back from the Temple on the Sea, there is a sign on the left side of the road advertising a museum dedicated to the history of Indo-Trinbagonian history.

Our pass -our present - our future

Soon to be opened on April 30th the museum will feature a variety of activities until Indian Arrival Day. We were lucky enough to speak with the curator of the museum who so kindly showed us around and talked with us about all the work that has gone into making the museum possible. The building itself used to be a Hindu school and is relatively small. However the plan for the space is to show artifacts as well as large digital photographs of life on the plantations as well as festivals, ways of dress and professions. The curator has called for any and all items that can help assist in making the telling of Indo-Trinbagonian history as comprehensive as possible. The museum is linked with the National Museum in Port-of-Spain and the launching is expected to be large.

There are many temples in Trinidad that can be visited on a daily basis, and this bridge between two of them, dedicated to the lives of a people is a wonderful, worthwhile endeavour. We have seen this year a self funded gallery in San Fernando and a Pan Museum in Woodbrook and now there is another museum to look forward to. All of these places are intimate spaces, the Indian museum having the most support of the three. In every instance these places must be seen, must be supported by the public. They belong to us the people of Trinidad and Tobago. At last we are telling our stories about our history as we have seen it. It is an important time to encourage teachers and students to visit these sites, and to take friends and visitors to these new places. - Adele

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