Maroon Chief Meets British Officers, Jamaica, 1738


Robert C. Dallas, The history of the Maroons . . . (London, 1803), reprinted Cass (London, 1968), vol. 1, facing title page.


Caption, Old Cudjoe making peace, portrays the leader of the western Maroons of Trelawney Town with a British officer when a peace treaty was concluded between the Maroons and the British under a large cotton-tree on March 1, 1738. Cudjoe was rather a short man, uncommonly stout, with very strong African features . . . He had a very large lump of flesh upon his back, which was partly covered by the tattered remains of an old blue coat, of which the skirts and the sleeves below the elbows were wanting. Round his head was tied a scanty piece of white cloth . . . He had on a pair of loose drawers that did not reach his knees, and a small round hat with the rims pared so close to the crown, that it might have been taken for a calabash, being worn exactly to the rotundity of his head. On his right side hung a cow's horn with some powder, and a bag of large cut slugs; on the left side he wore a mushet, or couteau, three inches broad, in a leather sheath, suspended under his arm by a narrow strap that went round his shoulders. He had no shirt on, and his clothes . . . as well as the part of his skin that was exposed, were covered with the red dirt of the Cockpits, resembling oker... (vol. 1, pp. 53-54).

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