An Old Man, St. Thomas

Location: St. Thomas


This old man in St. Thomas, portrayed in color reproduction of a watercolor, is an almost regal character. His long white robe is probably of cotton or muslin, a light fabric for the tropical heat, but in a practical sense, the long sleeves and full coverage offer protection from the sun and elements. His robe appears to be worn over an additional white pair of pants and shirt, so the robe must have some sort of traditional value that unfortunately is not discussed in the text. The images in this text are lovely watercolors, but they stand alone, without detailed descriptions.

The hat is similar to others we have seen, and clearly a European style. The scarf worn under the hat on the other hand is not European, and is probably either native or brought over from Africa. In this image too we see the inextricable nature of the mixture of costume styles between cultures and the interesting and yet practical solutions that have been arrived at through this mélange.

Book Title: The West Indies

Plate Number: Page 250

Call Number: F1871 .H47