RIGGON - Hanover, Jamaica

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RIGGON - Hanover, Jamaica

Postby bimjim » Tue Aug 19, 2008 2:13 pm

http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/westernn ... IGGONS.asp

From the Jamaica Observer

Calling all Riggons
Hanover native hosts open day to find roots
PAT ROXBOROUGH-WRIGHT, Editor-at-Large/ Western Bureau
Thursday, August 14, 2008


Recall Alex Haley's epic journey to find his roots. If you enjoyed that, you'll have no trouble appreciating R George Riggon's effort to assemble his family via a myriad of strategies that will climax in the Pond Bottom area of Montpelier, with a activity-filled open day - the bi-centennial Riggan heritage event to be precise - come Saturday.

Known to family and friends as Riggy, Riggon now prefers to be referred to as George.

"George was the name given to my great grandfather in 1832 when he was freed... my story features in part his emergence from slavery," he told the Observer West.

That story has been chronicled in two books - The love of a father, a mother and a son and Life as a Riggan/Riggon both published by Authorhouse in 2007 and 2008 respectively.

The first book traces the journey of the author's mother - Lize Patterson - from her migration from Jamaica to England's West Midlands in the '50s on a mission to keep her family unit intact, by fetching home her husband who had migrated close to a decade before.

It's an intricate plot - not unlike many which played out in the mass migration from the West Indies to England decades ago - which sees her getting caught between two worlds and two families. The second is very much a family search, as it were, which started with Riggon doing a genetics test which placed his heritage in West Africa's Sierra Leone.

"My family background has always been a mystery... it was always a case of 'well you are related to x and y, where am I from?' I wanted to know so I set about finding out through painstaking research of records - birth, death, marriage certificates, etc - going back to the 1700's", he told the Observer West.

Born in December of 1964 in Hanover's Sandy Bay, George Riggan attended the Sandy Bay All-Age school before leaving the island for England with his mother.

He worked in that country as a university research assistant among other endeavours before returning to Jamaica.
Saturday's all-day event will be a family affair.

"What we're really trying to do is to assemble all the Riggons or as many as possible to build up a picture around the family genealogy. We'll be having tours of family cites, example the family cemetery, and we'll be adding names to the family tree, There'll be food on sale, raffles, and when it's over, I'll be doing a third book," he said.
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