Hundreds of pieces of Tobago’s artefacts on show at the Tobago Heritage Museum at Fort King George, Scarborough are now owned by the Tobago Trust.
The artefacts were those of the Mt Irvine Trust, which in 1992 agreed to the loan of the Mt Irvine Collection to the Tobago House of Assembly (THA) and were permanently handed over to the Assembly at ceremony at the Coco Reef Resort and Spa on Tuesday. (9th July 2013) Secretary of Community Development and Culture Dr Denise Tsoiafatt-Angus later handed over the artefacts to the Trust at the ceremony during which past Trust members were presented with letters of appreciation while the present members were presented with awards for their work.
In an address Angus said the Trust has championed the preservation and protection of Tobago’s collective heritage that comprised artefacts, history, cultural relics and sites, landmarks and monuments of Tobago’s ancestors being preserved for generations yet to come to learn from the past.
“The Trust is important in enabling people to access their heritage, to impart deep knowledge and understanding for the irreplaceable possessions which have defined us and serve to improve the management of our cultural assets,” she said.
Angus also paid tribute to Tobagonian curator Edward Hernandez who not only served as a member of the Trust but was for several years the Curator of the Tobago Museum.
She said in recognition of the importance of promoting and preserving Tobago’s heritage, her Division had embarked on initiatives which will serve to protect and promote its shared heritage and to strengthen the work of the Trust.
She added that these included the compilation of the heritage assets of each community in Tobago which will serve to promote community tourism, strengthen community identity and promote the community visioning exercise; approaching the Executive Council for approval to reappoint the Trust with new terms and a broader mandate; and make recommendation to the Office of the Chief Secretary that the area of museum studies/museology/heritage studies be accorded a development priority for Tobago and that scholarships be awarded in these fields to treat with the paucity of qualified persons in the field. This will also ensure that Tobagonians were suitably qualified to guarantee the safe keeping of Tobago’s heritage.