On very many occasions, I’m caught in serious verbal confrontation with some of my intellectual friends on various subjects. Quite recently the highlight was on the name of the Upper Demerara river town, which came into focus because I continue to indicate in all of my writing the name Lindentown as one word. The citizens of Lindentown and Guyana as a whole should know how places got their names, for example Georgetown, Charlestown, Alberttown, Lacytown, etc, etc. In The GT&T 2007 telephone directory on page 30 under the caption ‘A brief history,’ it is stated that during the two-year reign of the French, they constructed a new town, Longchamps, at the mouth of the Demerara River. The Dutch regained power in 1784 and moved their colonial capital to Longchamps and renamed it Stabroek. The capital city eventually would become known as Georgetown. [Ed note: 1. The founding of Georgetown is usually taken as 1781, when the British chose the site of the capital before being displaced by the French the following year. 2. While the French did use the name Longchamps, they seem to have named their new settlement La Nouvelle Ville.]
The King of England, whose name was George had more than one capital named in his honour, and it must be understood that heads of empires and conquerors gave their own names and family’s names to places, things and people. In Guyana, during the PNC and the PPP administration there were some changes, for example Atkinson Airport became Timehri International Airport which is now the Cheddi Jagan International Airport Timehri; Murray Street is now called Quamina Street; a potion of High Street is now renamed Avenue of the Republic. Arvida Road changed to Republic Avenue, Henderson Road was renamed Damon Avenue and there are countless other changes in Guyana.
My friends continue to say that Lindentown shouldn’t or cannot be one word and it must be referred to as the Town of Linden. My point is if Georgetown, Alberttown, Lacytown, and Jonestown are one word, then Lindentown is also one word. My question is why don’t they say the Town of George? Let us not forget the late King George who was head of Britain and its colonies and the late Linden Forbes Sampson Burnham who was President of the nation of Guyana.
As one people we must be proud and love ourselves as much as we love others.
Lindentown sounds just as good as Georgetown.
B Winslow Parris