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#410336 - 06/22/11 08:59 AM Miskito Indians Look For Clues Of Their Identity
Marty Offline
If you've ever taken Social Studies in Belize - or even taken a tour of Belize City as a tourist - you'll know that three Miskito Indian Kings were crowned at St. John's Cathedral in Belize City.

History tells us that the Miskito Indians were a part of the British Empire's limited sphere of interest in Central America - so it was natural that they would have an affinity in Belize.

But today the Miskito domain is in Nicaragua, along its Caribbean Coast. Still, a part of their history is in Belize - and today we found four leaders of this community in Belize looking for answers. Here is their story:

Jules Vasquez Reporting
These four men look maybe like any Belizean men you'd meet at a bus stop: Peter Moore maybe from Cayo, Guillermo Espinosa maybe from Toledo, Hector Williams maybe Orange Walk, and David Webster, maybe from Progresso.

But they're all Miskito Indian. Espinosa is the purest:

Guillermo Espinosa, Miskito Fighter
"I am a fighter, Miskito fighter."

Jules Vasquez
"Who are you guys, how you are all Miskito and you look different."

Hector Williams Wihtatara, (Big Chief)
"Ok let me explain it, Peter Moore is mix with Indian and creole. Guillermo Espinosa is Miskito and me I have a little bit of Chinese blood and a little of bit of Spanish but the rest of my blood is Indian. David Webster is from Cayman Island."

A very mixed people, who have their Miskito territory - 650 thousand square miles along the Caribbean Coast of Central America.

Hector Williams Wihtatara, (Big Chief)
"We have more than half a million Miskito."

Jules Vasquez
"And are you all autonomous."

Hector Williams Wihtatara, (Big Chief)
"The war time in 1980-1990 we had one war with the Miskito Indians. At that time the government tries to bring down the war - close the war. They used autonomy - only the name. A lot of things they wrote but they didn't do anything."

And now they are in Belize to try and find lost pieces of their history. They did some of that today at the Museum of Belize, where they tried to figure out where their world - which is in Nicaragua - and Belize's Maya world fit together.

But the colonial legacy is what we may share most evidently. St. John's Anglican Church is a touchstone:

Jules Vasquez
"What is the connection that your people have with Belize?"

Hector Williams Wihtatara, (Big Chief)
"That's why we came on this trip. This is the first trip to Belize so we don't have any connection. We came looking for our history. We have part of our history but we need more, so that's why we came to look maybe at the University or maybe at the museum and different places, maybe we can find our history. Three kings have been crown in Belize. We went to St. John's Cathedral."

Now they don't have a king anymore, they have a Withatara - who is Hector Williams:

Peter Moore, Bluefield Zone, South Mosquitia
"First time they use to call it king or president, in our ancestor time they use to call it "Big Chief"."

In fact he says five thousand Miskito Indians settled in Belize after those coronations and now they are looking for their descendants:

Hector Williams Wihtatara, (Big Chief)
"When I came and I saw one sister, when I saw her face - it's like she came from one of my villages. so that how we can identify, we are looking and maybe we need to talk to them and we can understand more of each other. So that's why we are calling all the Belizean people and Miskito our brother and one in unity. I hope and I believe that Miskito Indians are living in this country Belize."

The Miskito delegation will be in Belize for a few more days - and if you have something to share with them you can call the man who brought them to Belize and is facilitating them, Emmerson Guild at 629-8751….

Channel 7

#410345 - 06/22/11 09:14 AM Re: Miskito Indians Look For Clues Of Their Identity [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline

Miskito Indians are in Belize on a fact finding mission

A team of four Miskito Indians are in Belize on a fact finding mission. The team members, who are from the ‘Mosquito Coast’ which lies along the Nicaragua Coast and a section of Honduras, says that they have strong connections with Belize and are trying to piece together their history. Hector Williams Padilla, leader of the delegation says that three of their Kings were crowned in Belize so they want to find answers about their descendants’ migration.

Hector William Padilla: Minister, Mosquito Coast

Hector William Padilla

“In this country in Belize they pass four of our kings the last one was crowned in Belize City, three three three. So they when I come I went to the Anglican Church and we went and we saw where place exactly they crown our kings because we had eighteen kings. After that the kingdom finished in 1894.”

Peter Moore, Mosquito Coast

“We been hundred and nineteen years under slavery yuh know, Nicaragua come ih emm annex us, join wi wid Nicaragua by force ih neva yet discover wi, ih nuh colonize us by force.”

Peter Moore

Hector William Padilla

“In Belize we hope and we think we gwein find the, we came to look our history. Our history root is in Belize we have to find in different places, maybe in museum or maybe we have to go different places of history or the people who write in the and university we have to go and look our history. We have part of our history but we’re looking more our history. Because we believe bout in five thousand Mosquito soldier I told already or the kings they bring and stay in Belize and all of the sons and daughters they living in Belize. We met already with the one group of them, they don’t speak mosquito language our language they speak only Creole but you can see the face just like he face because they came from our country.”

If you have any information that can help the Mosquito Coast delegation you can contact call them at 630-2239 or email them at krukira@yahoo.es

Channel 5

#410360 - 06/22/11 10:32 AM Re: Miskito Indians Look For Clues Of Their Identity [Re: Marty]
ckocian Offline
Many contemporary people call these people and their ancestral land "Mosquito." Few know it is really "Miskito."

#410362 - 06/22/11 10:41 AM Re: Miskito Indians Look For Clues Of Their Identity [Re: Marty]
elbert Offline
The Miskito Coast, as Columbus called it, got changed some how to 'Mosquito Coast'.
probably a spell czech problem:-)
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