BIOGRAPHY

Michael Anthony

Michael was born in Mayaro on 10th February, 1930 and attended the Mayaro Roman Catholic School. He often tells, of how the Mayaro landscape, later provided much inspiration for his books. Being born in such a beautiful place he says has always given him thoughts of being a writer in order to describe it. This is a task he feels he is yet to accomplish.

When Michael was eleven, he spent a year in San Fernando and the story of this year inspired his second novel, “The Year in San Fernando.” This novel went on to be assigned as an English literature text book for several years in his homeland of Trinidad and Tobago.

Michael could be said to have begun his career at 23, when he began having poems published in the Trinidad Guardian. Although his first love was poetry he looked forward to writing prose. At 24, in 1954, he went to England, where he began writing short stories for a BBC literary program for West Indian writers, called “Caribbean Voices.”

As a result of the closure of the program in 1958, he made his first attempt at a novel. 
Not finding that particular attempt satisfactory, he tried another. This work focused on the annual “Southern Games” at Guaracara Park, Pointe-à-Pierre, which he became familiar with while he worked there at the oil refinery.

The publication of this novel set him on the road he had always wanted. He then authored the well known books “The Year in San Fernando,” (1965) and “Green Days by the River” (1968) Illness caused him to leave the cold English climate in 1968, and finding no job at home in Trinidad he opted to go to Brazil. There he spent two years. Because of a number of considerations including economic and family, he returned to Trinidad in 1970 and has been here ever since.

Dr. Anthony probably best known for writing Green Days by the River has received among other accolades; the Humming Bird gold medal at the National Awards ceremony of August 31, 1979, as well as the honorary degree of Doctor of Letters (D. Litt.) at the University of the West Indies(Graduation Exercises of October 31, 2003).

Up to the moment he has written 30 books. The most recent of which are Builders of the Nation of Trinidad and Tobago 2012, and Christopher Columbus, the Man and His Voyages (2012) and The Briefcase 2013

NALIS (the National Library of Trinidad and Tobago) was kind to him in 2003 to install, under their auspices, a full collection of his work in the NALIS library at Pierreville, Mayaro, and they even indulged him in 2005 when they purchased some of his later papers, being housed at their headquarters library in Port-of-Spain. (Some of his earlier papers had been acquired by the University of the West Indies at St. Augustine in 2003).

PUBLICATIONS

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A History of Trinidad and Tobago in the 20th Century

History is defined as a record of the past, therefore everything that happens is history. But when one wants to record the past, it is useless to record everything. One has to choose what is important...


Whatever one does, since "no man is an island" as John Donne says, one has to cope with what is happening around one and with the passage of time, for this could make a great difference as to what one sees. And of course, and in general, the social life..


The author of this book set out to capture the life and times of Trinidad and Tobago in the 20 Century, looking at big events and small, glad events and sad.


TITLE: A History of Trinidad and Tobago in the 20th Century
CATEGORY: History
PUBLISHER: Circle Press Limited,
Port of Spain, Trinidad. W.I.
DATE PUBLISHED: 2010
AVAILABLE on Amazon.com

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Anaparima

The term ‘Anaparima' is derived from the passage by Sir Walter Raleigh in his book, ‘The Discovery of Guiana': “And then we came upon the mountain foote called by the naturals Anaparima …” ‘Naparima', is a slight corruption of the word.


‘The Naparimas,' and has come to represent a whole region stretching from that ‘mountain foote,' with the principal centre of population of that region being the city of San Fernando.


This book is a history of San Fernando and the Naparimas from the moment Sir Walter Raleigh saw it in 1595 until the year 1900.

TITLE: Anaparima
CATEGORY: History
PUBLISHER: City Council of San Fernando
DATE PUBLISHED: 2001

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A Better and Brighter Day

The title A Better and Brighter Day is a quotation of Uriah Butler from a speech he made in the Supreme Court in 1937 when he offered to repeat his “seditious” speech of June 19, 1937. In the speech he had called on people to make sacrifices so that others might enjoy a better and a brighter day.


This book shows all the constitutional moves towards a better and brighter day visualised by Tubal Uriah Buzz Butler, and the scene is largely set in the Legislative Council. The words come from the mouths of the Legislators, as recorded by Hansard.


The fighting spirit, the devotion, the fire, of the truly committed, as well as the masquerading of the less than loyal, can be seen. Butler himself, who entered politics, came in at a crucial time. He was there at the new constitution of 1950, and the next constitutional term of the Legislature would be the last before Independence.


TITLE:A Better and Brighter Day
CATEGORY: Constitutional History
PUBLISHER: Circle Press Limited, Port-of-Spain
DATE PUBLISHED: 1987

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Builders of the Nation

For the 50th anniversary of independence in Trinidad and Tobago, 50 builders of the nation have been chosen for tribute. Many of them have made the wau easier by their work in the field of politics, such as Dr. Eric Williams, Dr. Rudranath Capildeo and both the leaders Uriah Butler and Captain Andrew Cipriani, while others, like Audrey Jeffers in social welfare, Beryl McBurnie and Boscoe Holder in the dance and Hasely Crawford as well as Ahmad Charles and Roger Gibbon for sport have been pinpointed.


TITLE:Builders of the Nation of Trinidad and Tobago
CATEGORY: History
PUBLISHER: Circle Press Limited,
Port of Spain, Trinidad. W.I.
DATE PUBLISHED: 2012

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Butler-Till the Final Bell

This novel is drawn form the historic oilfield riots of 1937, better known as the Butler riots.


These riots were the most significant in the history of modernTrinidad and Tobago for they led to constitutional changes such as the Adult Franchise Elections of 1946 which directly opened the road to the country's Independence 16 years later.


TITLE: Butler -Till the Final Bell
CATEGORY: Fiction
PUBLISHER: Macmillan
DATE PUBLISHED: 2004

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Parade of the Carnivals of Trinidad and Tobago 1839-1989

The French planters and their slaves who emigrated here from places like Guadeloupe, Martinique , Grenada , and later Haiti , are the people who introduced the Carnival to Trinidad.


Between this period, the late 18th Century, and the abolition of slavery in 1838, which is about exactly 50 years, the slaves used their time well to mimic and imitate, holding concerts and canboulay in their backyards, but ready to come onto the streets.


‘Parade of the Carnivals of Trinidad and Tobago' traces the story of the first Carnival, and bring proceedings up to 1989, the 100th anniversary of Carnival of the Streets in Trinidad and Tobago.


TITLE: Parade of the Carnivals of Trinidad and Tobago
CATEGORY: History
PUBLISHER:Circle Press Limited, Port-of-Spain
DATE PUBLISHED: 1989

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The Cheiftain's Carnival

This second collection of short stories is directly based on historical incidents. The title story ‘The Chieftain's Carnival' is drawn from a few fascinating occurrences during Carnival 1933 involving the celebrated calypsonian, Attila the Hun, the chieftain himself, chantwell Walter “Railway” Douglas, and the most prominent disguise artist of the time – Austin Nolte.


But these stories are all based on documented incidents in Trinidad 's history.


TITLE: The Chieftain's Carnival
CATEGORY:Fiction (Short Stories)
PUBLISHER: -
DATE PUBLISHED:1993

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Christopher Columbus The Man and His Voyages

This book concentrates on the oddities of Columbus, the inconsistencies in his stories to the king and queen of Spain, the fact that he knew very well he was in the “Islands of the Seas” of which he had heard, and above all his “secret” knowledge that he was not in the Indias. This does not, of course detract from his reputation for courage and skill and bravery, nor indeed from his cruelty. He remains the only prominent explorer whose activities we know from childhood to death.


TITLE: A History of Trinidad and Tobago in the 20th Century
CATEGORY: History
PUBLISHER: Circle Press Limited,
Port of Spain, Trinidad. W.I.
DATE PUBLISHED: 2012
AVAILABLE on Amazon.com

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Streets of Conflict

Streets of Conflict , is Michael Anthony's sole novel set in Brazil where he spent two years – and insists this is the finest country he has lived in.


The novel is set in Rio de Janeiro and draws upon the political upheavals and the turmoil in the streets, at that particular point of 1968, but the work also provides the backdrop for a tale of normal life and pursuit of individual peace.


TITLE: Streets of Conflict
CATEGORY: Fiction
PUBLISHER: André Deutch Limited,
London,
DATE PUBLISHED: 1976

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Cricket in the Road

These short stories were written during Michael Anthony's early days in London where he went to realize his dream of being a writer. Most of the stories spring from nostalgic memories of his childhood at Mayaro.

Several were broadcast on Caribbean Voices – a London BBC program which featured West Indian writers, and was beamed out to the West Indian islands.


TITLE: Cricket in the Road
CATEGORY: Fiction
PUBLISHER: André Deutch Limited,
London,
DATE PUBLISHED: 1973

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Historical Dictionary of Trinidad and Tobago

Written in 1997 this book attempts to cover the history of Trinidad and Tobago , event by event, and in alphabetical order.

There is also information on the currency, the economy, the geography and matters of that kind, and the book also contains short biographies on all the prominent figures.


TITLE:Historical dictionary of Trinidad and Tobago
CATEGORY: HIstory
PUBLISHER:Scarecrow Press,
United States,
DATE PUBLISHED: 1997

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Bright Road to El Dorado

This tale is based on the arrival of Sir Walter Raleigh in Trinidad in 1595. This adventure to search for El Dorado fills the cacique's young son with foreboding. He is sure that in the passing of a few quick moons these people from the sea will take their island from them, for he knows this is what they plan to do.

He visits Raleigh in apparent friendship but seeking to confound his plans. There is excitement when Raleigh asks the boy whether he knows the road to El Dorado . “Yes Guatterral,” the boy say in his tongue, “Yes, I know the bright road to El Dorado .” Trinidad.

Ayun leaves his island smiling, promising to show Guatteral the way, but in his heart swearing to lose and confound him.


TITLE: Bright Road to El Dorado
CATEGORY: Fiction
PUBLISHER: Nelson,
London,
DATE PUBLISHED: 1983

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First in Trinidad

This book celebrates the very first time certain big events took place in Trinidad, such as the arrival of ice, (1844), the coming of the first passenger railway (1876), the first motor car in 1900, the first highway (1942), and the coming of Independence to Trinidad and Tobago in 1962.


TITLE: First in Trinidad
CATEGORY: History
PUBLISHER: Circle Press Limited,
Paria,
DATE PUBLISHED: 1985, 2004

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Caribbean Folk Tales and Fantasies

This new edition ,adds new illustrations and changes to the previous layout. The stories centre on folk characters introduced by the French planters and their slaves around the end of the 18th century.

Before the advent of television, children were entertained by tales of the soucouyant, le garoup (ligahoo), la diablesse, Papa Bois, and the douenne.

The fantasies dwell on animals coping with the daily business of living in their world; like Pablo the dog who ventures to the city in search of his young friend Phillip, and Stanley who is hypnotised by the dancing la diablesse.


TITLE: Caribbean Folktales and Fantasies
CATEGORY: Folk Tales
PUBLISHER: Macmillan,
DATE PUBLISHED: 1997

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The Games Were Coming

Leon had only bought his Wasp cycle because cycling had been the new craze and all his friends had been taking it up. Two years later however, it was his prized possession and his whole ambition lay on the cycle track. He was consumed and cycling had become the most precious thing to him.

The Games Were Comingchronicle's Leon's life in the three months preceeding the southern Games, held in Marabella, Southern Trinidad. Focused and unwavering, not even the infectios Carnival Spirit which takes hold of Leon's young brother, Dolphus nor the advances of Sylvia, Leon's girlfriend can steer the determined young cyclist away from his preparation for the games. Feeling rejected, Sylvia becomes inextricablyinvolved with another man and resorts to the devious plan involving young Leon to save herself.


TITLE: The Games Were Coming
CATEGORY: Fiction
PUBLISHER: --
DATE PUBLISHED: --

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Glimpses of Trinidad and Tobago

This book was the first step into non-fiction and the beginning of the historical works.

It recounts the start and end of the Trinidad Government Railway, the old calypso days through one of its veterans, the history of Trinidad oil, a look at the asphalt “lake” of La Brea, the celebrated water-colour artist Michel Jean Cazabon, the arrivals of the East Indians in Trinidad , and many such historical episodes.


TITLE: Glimpses of Trinidad and Tobago
CATEGORY: Essays
PUBLISHER: Columbus Publishers
DATE PUBLISHED: 1974

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All That Glitters

This, the sixth of his novels, is regarded by the author as his finest work of fiction.

The book is set in Mayaro, and all the characters are drawn from people remembered from childhood.

This work of detective fiction delves into the mystery of the missing gold chain brought from Panama by Auntie Roomeen for her favourite sister Claris.

All That Glitters is the 2009 featured novel the One Book One Community project of the National Library and Systems Authority.


TITLE: All That Glitters
CATEGORY: Fiction
PUBLISHER: André Deutsch Limited,
London
DATE PUBLISHED: 1982

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Four Voyages of Columbus

The Four Voyages of Christopher Columbus also captioned ‘The Golden Quest,' tells the story of that extraordinary Genoese who braved the western seas in search of a passage to the Indias.

A strange and puzzling figure who sailed under the flag of Spain , he died in 1506 but has not been able to sleep in peace. But there can be no doubt that his discoveries changed the world more radically than anything else in history.


TITLE: Four Voyages of Columbus
CATEGORY: History
PUBLISHER: Macmillan,
London
DATE PUBLISHED: 1992

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Green Days by the River

Michael Anthony's best-known novel. It has been included in school literature since 1971 and has been a set book for the Caribbean Examinations Council since 2003.

The book draws a picture of Mayaro in the early 1950s. The main characters Shellie and Rosalie explore youthful love and companionship, and face the joys and the consequences.


TITLE: Greed Days By the River
CATEGORY: History
PUBLISHER: André Deutsch Limited
DATE PUBLISHED: 26th January 1967

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In the Heat of the Day

In the Heat of the Day recreates the tense political atmosphere leading up to the Red House Fire of 1903.

And of course there is the raging fire itself, which destroyed the parliamentary building. Was it the most disastrous yet politically significant event in Trinidad 's history? Hard to say, but it proved to be the mother of Trinidad 's political reform.

Did the characters Walter Darwent, Eva Carvalho, Mzumbo Lazare, Maresse-Smith, Greasy Pole, and the Governor himself, Sir Alfred Maloney, have any idea of what was going to unfold? Or did they just act rashly “in the heat of the day.”

However, Governor Sir Henry Jackson was right when on his arrival in 1904, he said: “Out of quick and sudden evil much lasting good will have come.”


TITLE: In the Heat of the Day
CATEGORY: Fiction
PUBLISHER: Heinemann,
London
DATE PUBLISHED: 1996

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Heroes of the People of Trinidad and Tobago

This work pays tributeto people of note — especially those who have made a difference to the life and times of the country.

Included in the many who have made extraordinary contributions are Dr Eric Williams who led the country to Independence, Arthur Andrew Cipriani and Uriah Butler – two of the great labour leaders, outstanding sportsmen – Hasely Crawford and Brian Lara; Beryl McBurnie – a prominent lady of dance.

Thirty seven heroes appear in the book.


TITLE: Heroes of the People of Trinidad and Tobago
CATEGORY: Brief Biographies
PUBLISHER: Circle Press Limited,
Port-of-Spain
DATE PUBLISHED: 1986

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The Lamp Lighter

The Lamp Lighter. This historical novel is based on three facts which all took place on 5th March, 1895. Firstly, businessman Edgar Tripp, introduced electricity to Trinidad, then there was the first cricket encounter with an English side, and thirdly, although Tripp lit up the Port-of-Spain night with electricity, the night was lit up by something else. While people were watching cricket at the Queen’s Park Savannah, fire had broken out downtown and uncontrollable flames engulfed the business sector. It was due to Tripp and his Trinidadian “son” and the son’s wife that news of the fire reached the general population, and Tripp himself heroically fought the fire, but there was no water, so how could the fire have been fought?

Tripp’s contribution that day is that he introduced electricity. The cricket which was a contest between Englishman’s Slade Lucas’s XI vs an All-Trinidad XI led directly to the formation of a West Indies team to tour England in 1900, and the disastrous fire with no water in sight led to the formation of the fire brigade.


TITLE:The Lamp Lighter
CATEGORY: History
PUBLISHER: Circle Press Limited,
Port-of-Spain
DATE PUBLISHED: 2013

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The Making of Port of Spain

Sample text for the time beingThis book examines the growth of the capital Port-of-Spain from a tiny village of 10 streets (1797) to the outbreak of the First World War in 1914.

The work explores events taking place in Port-of-Spain at all times, even as the town is made. It looks into and out of the town council — and after 1914, the City Council — and it looks into the Legislative Council and gets a sharp idea of the difference in the appearance of the men who dominate in each of them. It looks at sport, new boundaries, beautiful public buildings.

In its last period “The Making of Port-of-Spain” is taken up with reform and especially by the destruction of the Red House (Government Buildings) by fire — which resulted from the quest for reform — and at the same time it was taken up with the fight for the restoration of the Borough Charter, which was abolished in 1899.


TITLE: The Making of P.O.S.
CATEGORY: History
PUBLISHER: Columbus Paria 2004
DATE PUBLISHED: 1978

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King of the Masquerade

This tale, inspired by an incident during Carnival 1900, explores the consequences of a young man's forbidden love of the carnival and how it conflicts with family relationships.


TITLE: King of the Masquerade
CATEGORY: Fiction
PUBLISHER: Nelson
London
DATE PUBLISHED: 1975

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Profile Trinidad

Profile Trinidad is a history of Trinidad dating from the encounter by Christopher Columbus up to 1900.

All the high points of the Spanish occupation are noted, and of course those of the early English days, as well as the religious tension which accompanied British rule throughout the 19th century.


TITLE: Profile Trinidad
CATEGORY: History
PUBLISHER: Macmillan
London
DATE PUBLISHED: 1974

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Sandra Street and Other Stories

Sandra Street was published in 1974 and was the first of the stories to be published in book form. The stories comprise some of those which appear in “Cricket in the Road.”

The title story, “Sandra Street” was written in 1958 and the other stories belong to the self-same period, 1957/1958 period.


TITLE: Sandra Street and Other Stories
CATEGORY: Fiction
PUBLISHER: André Deutsch Limited
DATE PUBLISHED: 1974

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The Year in San Fernando

An eleven year old is sent from Mayaro — a quiet, remote village on the south-eastern coast of Trinidad — to live at the home of the Chandles in San Fernando . Mayaro, at the time, was one of the most undeveloped villages in Trinidad : piped water unheard of and no electricity. Although the boy enjoys life with his school-friends in San Fernando he is homesick; and when he is sent home just to spend the following Christmas, he abruptly remains home. “The Year in San Fernando ” has been used for school literature since 1970.


TITLE: A Year in San Fernando
CATEGORY: Fiction
PUBLISHER: André Deutsch Limited
DATE PUBLISHED: 1965

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The Briefcase

The Briefcase is a novel about the disastrous floods that took place in Diego Martin in 2010. The main characters are Corporal Kelsitter and the Villain of the Piece, Creffie. Creffie arranges with a fellow crook to rob the bank of a briefcase left on the counter of the bank by the crook. So it is an inside job. There is nothing extraordinary about the briefcase except that inside it is two million dollars. Creffie succeeds in climbing into the bank during a night of pouring rain, escapes detection and from then he’s planning flight. Corporal Kelsitter is on his heels. Creffie barely escapes being caught, fleeing in a boat to Venezuela.


TITLE: The Briefcase
CATEGORY: Fiction
PUBLISHER: Circle Press Limited,
Port-of-Spain
DATE PUBLISHED: 2013

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The Carnivals of Trinidad and Tobago From Inception to Year 2000

In 1989 the book PARADE OF THE CARNIVALS was published by this author in order to mark the 150th anniversary of the Carnival of the Streets. For it will be remembers that the first Carnival of the Streets took place in 1839, following the abolition of slavery on August 1st, 1838.

The present book, called THE CARNIVALS OF TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO, gives the story of the emergence of the steelband in the carnivals of Trinidad and indeed gives a history of its life and its very vibrant times from our jour ourvert of its inception (1935) up to the year 2000.

One word about Tobago. Not many people stop to think that Tobago had a completely different history from Trinidad until the two islands were united politically in 1889.


TITLE: The Carnivals of Trinidad and Tobago From Inception to Year 2000
CATEGORY: History
PUBLISHER: Circle Press Limited,
Port-of-Spain
DATE PUBLISHED: 2011

NOW AVAILABLE!!! Call: 868 628 2221

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High Tide of Intrigue

This opens up a world of drug-trafficking, corrupt policemen, undercover agents and crooks parading as harmless virtuous men.

However, the book also explores an area of deep childhood love as well as camaraderie, and even the charm among certain villains, despite their ruthlessness.

And where is the high tide of intrigue? The high tide of intrigue is to be found in the path of schooners plying between Trinidad and Grenada.


TITLE: High Tide of Intrigue
CATEGORY: Fiction
PUBLISHER: Heinemann
DATE PUBLISHED: 2001

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Towns and Villages of Trinidad and Tobago

The intention of writing this book was to find out the history and background of so many of our towns and villages about which there did not seem to be much information.

Yet the information lay, piecemeal, in documents making passing reference to that scene, in newspaper articles, sometimes in official documents, in the year-books, blue-books and Council Papers, and on occasions in letters to a friend.

This book, “Towns and Villages of Trinidad and Tobago” tell of the life and times of 53 towns and villages.


TITLE: Towns and Villages of Trinidad and Tobago
CATEGORY: Geo-History
PUBLISHER: Circle Press Limited,
Port of Spain
DATE PUBLISHED: 1988, Ishmael Khan - 2003
AVAILABLE on Amazon.com

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Port of Spain in a World at War

A reconstruction of Port-of-Spain during the Second World War (1939-1945).

This story examines the American presence in Trinidad , the military build-up and how the American soldiers changed Port-of-Spain.


TITLE: Port of Spain in a World at War
CATEGORY: History
PUBLISHER: National Cultural Council,
Port of Spain
DATE PUBLISHED: 1984

Sung by: Julia County

Words and Music by: Michael Anthony

Pianist:Renwick Paul

Background Vocals: Renwick and Desrian Paul

Sound Engineer:Robin Foster

ScoreSheet

This song was written to mark the advent of the new year 2000, the last year of the twentieth century. A few close Mayaro friends got together, and taking a cue from the passage of some 50 years, and some of us being hopelessly nostalgic for the past, we decided to celebrate all our old friends from Pierreville, Mayaro, who, like us, were between 14 and 18 years old between 1944 and 1948. For these were the truly golden years, a period when we had great fun together going to fairs and dances, visiting each other's homes, and simply enjoying how wonderful it was to be in Mayaro.

We made just one stipulation: all the people invited had to know each other well. There must be no question as “Who is such and such a person?” “What is his (or her) name?” That would mean the friendship could not have been close. Any one asking such a question would be disqualified and have to be thrown out.

There was to be dancing at this get-together and your humble servant borrowed many of the popular records of the 1940s, songs like Once I had a Secret Love , sung by Doris Day; as well as Wheel of Fortune, It is a lovely way to spend an Evening, Sailing down the River, and How would you like to be.

He also wrote a special song to be sung on the occasion: The Rose of Mayaro.

The invitations were all enthusiastically accepted and as the year 2000 opened, our Mayaro friends came to Mayaro from different points of Trinidad where they had moved to and one came from as far as Washington D.C. It was great to see people we had not seen for 50 years or more. The celebration was joyful, touching and emotional. The Rose of Mayaro was sung as tribute, by the Mayaronian who wrote it. But that was on the occasion. The soprano voice on the compact disk (CD) is not that of your humble servant, but of Julia County!