Multicultural Resources | OneWorld Progressive Institute

African-Related History


Part 5: Caribbean 2


Part 1: African Diaspora 1

Part 2: African Diaspora 2

Part 3: African Diaspora 3

Part 4: Caribbean 1

Part 5: Caribbean 2

Part 6: Caribbean 3

Part 7: Jamaican


Scroll down and learn more about some of the cultural icons of Jamaica, the little island in the Caribbean that has contributed so much to the world in many areas.

Here are some prominent Jamaicans who have contributed to art, history, literature, music, politics, science and sports to name just a few areas:

Claude MacKay - Poetry & Political Consciousness


Harry Belafonte - Music, Acting, Political Consciousness

Russwurm, John Brown   (1799-1851) Journalist, public official; born in Port Antonio, Jamaica. In 1827, with John Cornish, he published the first U.S. black newspaper, Freedom's Journal, dedicated to promoting black freedom and citizenship. Around 1828 he emigrated to Liberia, where he held public office and edited a newspaper.

Robert Nesta (Bob) Marley - Music & Political Consciousness - 25 years after his death at the age of 35, Marley's music has more impact than ever.  As you navigate this Web Site, turn up your speakers and listen to Marley's prophetic words.

Marcus Moziah Garvey - Social Activist, Politics,  & Black Consciousness (1887-1940)
Born in St. Ann's Bay, Jamaica; largely self-educated, he worked as a printer in Jamaica, edited several short-lived papers in Costa Rica and Panama, then founded the Universal Negro Improvement Association (UNIA) in Jamaica (1914). In 1916 he moved to New York City, where he established UNIA headquarters and started up the Negro World, a popular weekly newspaper that conveyed his message of black pride.  

Although he suffered many defeats, in stirring African- Americans with his message of pride in ancestry and prospects of self-sufficiency, he prefigured a later generation of African- American leaders such as Malcolm X.  Garvey's message is needed today.

Rex Nettleford - Art & Dance

Norman & Michael Manley - Politics & Trade Union

Ernest Ranglin - Jazz

Hector Winters, Lennox Lewis - Sports

Remember to sign up to be a Health Care Mentor to a minority child, or to a poor child looking for a role model.

In the area of Science - Jamaica has some outstanding luminaries:


  • A microbiologist and pathologist, he conducted world- recognized research on three major diseases including Tubercolosis  & Sleeping Sickness

  • In 1972: Prof. Louis Grant, chairman of the University Hospital Board and Professor of Microbiology, UWI, spoke at the official opening of the School of Physiotherapy.

  • This article, written by Dr. Rebecca Tortello, is the the first in a two-part series featuring Jamaican scientists, considers the work of Professor Louis Grant, microbiologist, one of those whose work had immense local and international impact.
  • As a student, Grant showed promise and received the Vere Trust scholarship to attend Jamaica College. He went on to Edinburgh University in Scotland and later specialised in tropical microbiology at the London School of Tropical Medicine and
    Hygiene. Prof. Grant then returned to Jamaica serving his country as a medical doctor, microbiologist and pathologist.

  • TUBERCULOSIS: In the 1940s Dr. Grant dreamed of a Jamaica with less disease and he decided to focus on tuberculosis  a disease then plaguing the island. He asked the World Health Organisation (WHO) and UNICEF for a grant to begin an inoculation campaign amongst Jamaican children.

  • Joined by Dr. Ronald Lampart, Dr. Grant completed a mass vaccination that is credited with helping to break the cycle of infection and halt the spread of the dreaded disease.  

2. Dr. Harold M. Johnson, 1875-1974

  • Principal Medical Officer of health who successfully led the fight against ookworm, ringworm, and malaria in Jamaica.   

3. Dr. Cicely Williams, 1893-1992

  • Identified protein deficiency disease kwashiorkor.  

4. Dr. William E. McCulloch, 1896-1963

  • Found cure for Black Water Fever and Trypanosomiasis (sleeping sickness)   

5. Dr. Leigh D. Lord, 1921

  • Blood transfusion pioneer who also developed "Tia Maria", the world renowned coffee liquor.


6. Prof. G. Lalor, 1930

  • A physical chemist Prof. Lalor is known for the discovery of haematoxylin, a substance extracted from logwood and used in the diagnosis of cancer.

  • Now retired from UWI, he served as a lecturer, creator of UWIDITE, the system of distance learning, and of Jamaica's first geo-chemical map, which uncovered many
    previously unidentified elements.

  • 1974-1995: He was the Pro-Vice Chancellor of UWI

  • 1991: Became the second principal of the Mona campus. He remains involved in various research projects.   

7. Dr. Kenneth Richards, 1933

  • Developed the "Richards Procedure" which made lung transplants feasible in humans.   

8. Dr. Paula Tennant, 1967

  • A biologist and botanist, she developed the transgenic Jamaican solo sunrise papaya, which has proven resistant to the Papaya Ringspot Virus in numerous field testings.

With guidance and support, our children can achieve great goals for great good.

  • Nothing is impossible to a willing heart.  
  • Please help by mentoring a child today!

Learn about the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture

The New York Public Library
515 Malcolm X Boulevard

New York, NY 10037-1801




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