THE NATIONAL SYMBOLS OF BARBADOS
Grandbaabaa told us that on November 30th, 1966 he and his parents went to the Garrison Savanah to see Barbados getting it's independance from Britian. This meant that from that day onwards, Barbados was able to make decisions about what went on in the country without having to ask permission from the British wooly sheep.
At the event there was the biggest parade that Grandbaarbaa had ever seen and this was the very first time they played our National Anthem and raised the Barbados Flag. Before this, we used everything belonging to England but on that day we got our very own.
THE BAARBAADOS FLAG
Before Independence Day, there was a competition and many Baarbaadians submitted artwork to show what they thought the flag should look like but with the help of my great uncle, Blenny Baarbaa, Grantley W. Prescod won the competition and the flag they drew is now used as our national flag. Actually Granny Sally said that Uncle Blenny did the colouring and that Mr. Prescod did all of the designing.
I like the colours that were choosen: 2 columns of ultramarine to show the colour of the sky and the sea surrounding Baarbaados and in the middle 1 column of gold (they couldn't actually use gold paint so they painted it yellow instead) to represents the sand on our beautiful beaches.
In the middle Mr. Prescod drew King Triton's Trident but he used a broken (short) version of it to show all the world that we had broken away from British rule and were going to govern ourselves. We chose to have a democratic system of government which means that the locals vote every 4 years for the next Prime Minister. The three points on the trident tell us what democracy means: 1) government of, 2) for, and 3) by the people.
OUR NATIONAL ANTHEM (the song of Barbados and the one they sang for the first time on Nov. 30, 1966)
Whenever there is an event in Barbados everyone sings this song at the beginning. When we sing, we show respect to our country and to everyone who helped to make it what it is by standing at attention (which mean standing up straight and proud, heads held high and with our hands at our sides). If you want to sing it, it goes like this:
In plenty and in time of need
When this fair land was young
Our brave forefathers sowed the seed
From which our pride is sprung
A pride that makes no wanton boast
Of what it has withstood
That binds our hearts from coast to coast
The pride of nationhood
We loyal sons and daughters all
Do hereby make it known
These fields and hills beyond recall
Are now our very own
We write our names on history's page
With expectations great
Strict guardians of our heritage
Firm craftsmen of our fate
The Lord has been the people's guide
For past three hundred years
With him still on the people's side
We have no doubts or fears
Upward and onward we shall go
Inspired, exulting, free
And greater will our nation grow
In strength and unity
By: Irving Burgie
THE BARBADOS COAT OF ARMS
We actually got this coat of arms before Independence Day. On Feburary 14th, 1966 the Queen of England gave this to us. This time Uncle Blenny had nothing to do with it. It was thought up by Mr. Neville Connel who worked at the Museum and a lady called Hilda Ince helped him with the artwork.
Mr. Connel imagined that our coat of arms should look like the ones used by other British colonies but with symbols from Barbados. So on the golden shield they drew a Bearded Fig Tree (this is the tree that they think Barbados was named after) and they drew the national flower of Barbados, the Pride of Barbados.
Grandbaabaa said that the pelican who is holding the shield used to own his own island. This island he named Pelican Island after himself. It was located very close to bridgetown. He and his family lived there for some time. He was quite famous here in Barbados and this is why they asked him to pose and be
drawn on the Coat of Arms. Grandbaarbaa says that as a little boy he would swim out with his friends to Pelican Island and play with all the little pelicans there. But one day someone decided to attach the land in Baarbaados to Pelican Island and so it is no longer there for us to swim to. I think I would have liked to swim there too.
On the other side of the shield is a dolphin fish. We don't know much about the dolphin who poses here, other than that fishermen in Barbados liked him a lot.
Above the shield is a helmet and then the arm of a human Barbadian, they are known as Bajans. Una and I redrew the crest one day and instead of the arm we put a hoof. It was very nice, if I may say so myself. Our hoof held the sugar cane just like the arm does. Since sugar was the main industry in Baarbaados for a long time, Mr. Connel put it on the Coat or Arms. He made it in a cross to show that we would get independence on St. Andrew's Day (Nov. 30th).
Under the shield is the motto of Barbados:
PRIDE AND INDUSTRY
THE PLEGE OF BARBADOS
Most mornings at school we have a general assembly and we all recite the pledge of Baarbaados. It goes like this:
I pledge allegiance to my country Barbados
and to my flag,
To uphold and defend their honour,
and by my living to do credit
to my nation, wherever I go.