A journey to the Island of healing, Curacao
Around five centuries ago, a Portuguese ship left their sailors who were affected by scurvy in a remote island located near the South America in order to prevent the spreading of the disease to other sailors in the ship. When the ship returned to the island to check the fate of the sailors who were left to die in the island, they were surprised to see that the fatal disease affected the sailors was complexly healed. Then, those Portuguese sailors believed that the remote island had some magical ‘disease healing power’. So, they gave it the name “Ilha da Curacao” (which means the Island of healing).
Later, though it was discovered that it was the vitamin c rich fruits found in the Island that helped the sailors to recover from the fatal disease of scurvy, which is a vitamin c deficiency disease, no serious efforts were made to change the name of the island.
This island is presently an autonomous country under the Kingdom of Netherlands. Its present name is Curacao.
This Lesser Antilles Island situated around sixty-five kilometre north of the South American country of Venezuela has a total population of over one lakh sixty thousand people.
Willemstad is the capital of one of the youngest autonomous countries in the region of Caribbean, which was once the hub of slave trade.
Unfortunately, the Island of Curacao suffered several oppressions and humiliations when it was under the clutches of its colonial masters.
Its original inhabitants were Arawak people whose ancestors migrated to this land from the Amazon Basin. Most of its indigenous people were enslaved by the Spaniards. Later, Dutch annexed the territory after it secured independence from Spain.
It was the Dutch West India Company that established the capital city of Curacao- Willemstad. In those days, no other colonial powers had interest in this land as there were no serious natural resources like gold available in the territory.