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28353: Benson: (reply) RE: 28338: Paquiot (ask): Origin of Haiti Thomas (fwd)
From: Legrace Benson <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Response to 28338 From LeGrace:
As they say to me on Google, "Do you mean..." Haiti Toma in Kreyol, Ayiti
Toma? Since I am on the other side of the country from my Xerox of the
relevant pages of an early Bulletin of Ethnography, I'll hope for someone
else to do the precise citation. In the article, the ethnographer, J.B.
Romaine describes Haiti Toma as derived from a district and population group
--"Toma"-- from one of the more remote parts of western Africa, a part of
which population French slavers captured and set to work as field hands in
St.-Domingue. This became a generic name for all the rural slaves, then for
the rural population. On the other hand, the name may actually have been
used for the first time in the late nineteenth or early twentieth century.
I hope the inadequately recalled citation can be corrected by someone with a
copy of the Bulletin handy, or who has better knowledge form a later source.
I respond in part as a way of my finding out too.