New Governor welcomed in traditional style

Cayman Island new
Governor Mr. Duncan Taylor and family were given a traditional Caymanian
welcome at the Bodden Town Civic Centre Thursday evening.

The Governor was touring the district
when the family stopped in to view the huge display of Caymanians artefacts on
display.

The group was travelling along with Health Minister Mark Scotland,
MLA’s Anthony Eden and Dwayne Seymour.

After getting a brief rundown on
Bodden Town heritage by historian Mary Lawrence, the Governor enjoyed a glass
of tamarind drink.

At
Pedro St James the Governor also received a warm welcome by residents and
joined them for a night of Caymanian cultural performances and traditional
foods.

After
a brief welcome by Health Minister Mark Scotland, Bodden
Town MLA Dwayne Seymour was given the honour of welcoming the Governor to the District of Bodden Town – which
he said they proudly called “The Cradle of the Nation.”

“For
it is in our district that all our historical roots for the orderly development
of our country were planted,” he said.

Mr.
Seymour went on to explain to the Governor and his family that the people of
Cayman were a nation that is proud of its heritage, of its independent spirit;
accomplishments and ability to meet the challenges as is forefathers did.

“Bodden
Town tradition tells us, the Islands first capital, it has been said, that
George Town was only a hamlet when Bodden Town was a Town.

“It
was believed that the town’s pre-eminence among the localities on Grand Cayman was derived from its location, which
provided a vantage point for the sighting and hailing of passing English
merchant ships,” he said.

He
further stated that it was at Pedro St. James Castle that law and order would
first be given a foothold with the appointment of William Bodden as chief magistrate by
the Governor of Jamaica. “He would be joined by his two brothers as magistrates,
and they, in turn would join forces with the principal inhabitants to establish
a viable system of justice for the islands,” he said.

“This
property on which we stand would be home to the first formal court and
legislative system, with this body of men devising laws and administering
justice throughout the late l8th and early 19th centuries.

“In
fact we even paid the owners to allow us to use a part of the Castle
as the first jail,” said Mr. Seymour.

“In
1831 at a meeting held here on 5th December they took the decision to introduce
representative government and five days later, on 10th December held the first
general election, establishing a bicameral form of government.

He
further stated that though the government would move its seat to George Town
the following year, it was here that it all began. “The subsequent evolution
into the Assembly of Vestry and Justices would serve the country well, until
1959.”

Mr.
Seymour continued that, “It was in Bodden Town too, the old town which you will
visit next week, that the first school and the first church in the Cayman
Islands were established. A district that focused strong on education, we would
give the country its first graduate of Mico College
in 1830, the first trained woman teacher, the first trained nurse and the first
Education officer.”

Mr.
Seymour finished his history remarks penned by Mary Lawrence by quoting Mr.
Long as saying – “No part of the world, perhaps, is more beautiful than this
spot”.

“Welcome
to the Cayman Islands Sir, and welcome to your lovely wife Mrs. Marie Taylor,
your son Mr. Maximilian Taylor and the rest of your family when they arrive.”

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