The Cockpit Country is not only rich in its ecology, but it is also the area in which Maroon culture has developed. Maroons used the Cockpit Country’s rugged landscape as a hideout from the British who continually sought to deny them the their freedom. The result is a culture that is at the very heart of the Jamaican way of life, yet unique. Maroons have pride in their autonomy and preserve their culture through craft, music, dance, and the culinary arts.
There are traditional crafts such as the gumbay drum, basket weaving, and wooden spoons, in addition to a long practiced tradition of herbal remedies. Some of these items are available at our online store.
The Gumbay Drum at left is the traditional Maroon drum. It is made by George Huggins and his son Tyrone in Accompong. The drum is very unique in design, and is still used in all the traditional ceremonies; most notably the January 6th ancestors festival. This is the longest running festival in the English speaking Caribbean in which the Maroons from all over the island come to Accompong to celebrate the autonomy they have held since 1739.