‘Going back to my roots – one man’s story’ by Iyamide Thomas

In the Ghanaian language of Twi  there is a word ‘Sankofa’ which loosely translated means ‘ go back and get it’ and one Sankofa symbol is a swan like bird with its head turned backwards. In the African Diaspora, Sankofa has come to symbolise the need for an individual to reflect on their past to build a successful future or the importance of an individual to learn from their past or history. In other words knowing your ‘roots’ and your past may help you with your future. This is what Stephen Mitchell had in mind when in December 2015 he visited his ancestral home Sierra Leone, West Africa for the first time on a journey to trace his Krio roots. Stephen’s maternal grandad David Alginon Thorpe was a Krio and the nephew of the well known activist I.T.A Wallace Johnson.  Click the link below to listen to my interview of Stephen’s fascinating story:

Robert Foresythe: Black British Jazz legend of Saro descent by Nigel Dylan Davies

Reginald Foresythe was born on 28 May, 1907 to Charles Albert Foresythe, a barrister, and his English wife, Charlotte Annie (nee Falk) at their home in Shepherd’s Bush (West London) at Hetley Road. Reginald’s mother was of German descent, but his father, Charles Albert Foresythe, a newly qualified barrister (1906) was the descendant of a prominent Saro (the term for Sierra Leoneans in Nigeria) family.

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