Jamaica Maroons
A Nation within a Nation 

Jamaica’s Main Maroon Communities

Jamaica Maroons - The main Maroon communities in Jamaica today are

  • Accompong Town
  • Trelawny Town
  • Mountain Top
  • Scotts Hall and
  • Nanny Town

Accompong Town in St Elizabeth remains the largest Maroon community.  

Annual Celebrations

The Maroon’s celebrations of Accompong Town St Elizabeth Jamaica are held on Jan 6th annually.

It is very much a cultural event where  displays of artifacts of the Maroon people and their ancestors can be seen.

Jamaicans home and abroad together with visitors from Europe, the Far East and the Americas attend this annual event.  

Learn about the people of Accompong Town, their traditions, beliefs and practices.  All visitors are welcomed but they do have rules, one of which is no picture taking.  Please respect the traditions of your hosts. 

Arbitrary picture taking  may cause offense – if you simply cannot resist, please be polite and ask permission.  It shows respect and appreciation.

This celebration dates back to the end of Maroon Wars and the subsequent signing of the 1738 Peace Treaty with the British colonizers during slavery in Jamaica which gave them autonomy on their own lands, albeit with some very onerous conditions. 

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Maroon Leaders

Much is written about the Maroons and their main leaders – Cudjoe who led the Leewards Maroons and Nanny, led the Windward Maroons are the most well known and written about.   Nanny is today Jamaica’s only female National Hero; a likeness of her adorns the current Jamaican $500 bill.

Nanny was a revered female leader of the people of Nanny Town.  

She was defiant in her leadership and led many strategic attacks and defenses against the colonizers in the Jamaica Maroon Wars.  

Maroon Wars

After their battles with the British in two separate wars, the British governor of Jamaica in 1738 having realized that they could not break the resilience of the Maroons decided to enter into a Peace Treaty with Cudjoe, the leader of the Leewards Maroons. 

The Treaty gave rights to lands of their own in the mountainous regions of Jamaica where they had already taken up residence.  A similar Treaty was later drawn up and signed by Nanny, leader of the Windward Maroons.  

Jamaica Maroons -Conditions of the Treaties

Of course there were conditions in these Treaties that heavily favoured the British and caused resentment between the Maroons and the remaining enslaved people. These include: 

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  • The Maroons would agree not to lead a rebellion against the slave trade;
  • The Maroons would return any runaway slaves that escaped into their lands.   
  • that they remain in the lands set out in the treaties 

  • The Maroons to install their own ultimate Leader (chief) supervised by a representative of the British and; 
  • The Maroons would assist the British in fighting off any attack from other European explorers attempting overthrow.

Jamaica  Maroons - Since Jamaica’s Independence

Since 1962 when Jamaica became independent, successive governments have partially addressed the question of Maroon integration with the rest of Jamaica but this idea has always been strongly resisted by the Maroons citing their Treaty of 1738.  

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To date, no real push has been made by successive Jamaican governments to address Jamaica’s Maroon autonomy or integration. So the Jamaican Maroons remain a nation within a nation and enjoy the privilege of living on tax free lands as per their 1738 status.

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