On February 17th, Professor Heather Cateau will be coming to Trinity to give a lecture on Connecticut-Caribbean relationships throughout history, ranging from the 18th century to modern day relationships. Professor Cateau will be coming to Trinity to give the Mead Lecture in History, Trinity’s most prestigious endowed annual lecture which was established in 1952 by George Jackson Mead. Professor Cateau is a senior lecturer in Caribbean History at the University of West Indies’ St. Augustine Campus and the Dean of the Faculty of Humanities and Education. Professor’s Cateau’s latest publications are Beyond Tradition, co-edited with Rita Pemberton and The Caribbean in the Atlantic World, which was co-authored with John Campbell. Her recent work deals with plantation and enslavement systems in the Caribbean.
Professor Cateau’s lecture, entitled “Caribbean-Connecticut Connections from the 18th Century to the 21st Century,” discusses the range of economic, social and other connections that existed between Connecticut and the English speaking islands of the Caribbean, Jamaica, Barbados, and Trinidad and Tobago. The basic thrust of the lecture is that the immigration from the West Indies to Connecticut, especially Hartford, is only the modern form of the historical connections between Connecticut and the West Indies, a product of the 20th and 21st centuries. The historical connections between the two stretch back to before America was an independent nation in the 18th century. In the 18th and 19th century, the relationship between the two involved many people from New England coming down to the West Indies, slave trade, and commerce between the two.