History is full of men who have done amazing things; Robert Nesta Marley has permanently been settled in the books of history for his achievements in life.
Trenchtown was a housing scheme, built after the 1951 hurricane had destroyed the area's squatter camps. These camps, which had gradually grown up around west Kingston, had been built around the former Kingston refuse dump, where the country folk and displaced city dwellers would scavenge for whatever they could find. (In the days of the 'plantocracy business', the area had been a sugar plantation, owned by the Lindos, one of the twenty-one families that are said to rule Jamaica.) .
In 1957, Bob's mother Cedella moved him from Nine Miles to live in Kingston. Like other city-dwellers, Cedella came from the quiet rural surroundings to the Jamaican capital in search of work and excitement. City life offered little respite as poverty and violence plagued Trench Town while the chances of finding jobs were as poor as the living conditions. .
However, Trenchtown was considered desirable accommodation for the slum and shantytown dwellers that lived there. The 'government yards' comprised solidly constructed one- or two-story concrete units, built around a central courtyard which contained communal cooking facilities and a standpipe for water. Few were so ungrateful as to complain that Jamaica's colonial masters had seen fit to build Trench Town without any form of sewage system. .
Trenchtown: Spiritual PowerPoint for the Rastafarians.
Even before the 1951 hurricane had mashed down the zinc-and-packing-case residences of the shantytown, the region was already considered as an area for outcasts. In particular, Trenchtown had now become the main home in Kingston for the strange tribe of men known as Rastafarians, who had set up an encampment down by the Dungle in the early years of World War II. .
Garlanded in acres of matted, plaited hair, these primal figures, permanently surrounded by the funky aroma of marijuana, could appear as archetypal as a West African baobab tree.