Petite Martinique

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Petite Martinique is one of the islands of Carriacou and Petite Martinique, which is a dependency of Grenada.

It is 2½ miles away from Carriacou. With its 586 acres (2.37 km2) and population of 900, it is smaller than Carriacou. Petite Martinique is much smaller, comprising about 9.8% of the total area and 30% of the entire population which is estimated at 10,000. The residents of this island live by boat-building, fishing and seafaring.

History[edit]

The first European founder of the island of Petite Martinique was a French Fisherman called Mr. Pierre from Martinique. It is thought that he figured that the isle was shaped roughly like Martinique so he named it Petite (little) Martinique.

Recent history[edit]

The majority of the inhabitants today are of Indian, Scottish, Portuguese, French and African descent. There still is a British influence on the island as it was colonised by the British Empire and it is part of Grenada, a Commonwealth state. There is still a French influence which is demonstrated in village names, such as L'Esterre, La Resource, Beausejour, and others. However, the local French creole is only spoken by older islanders.

The Sacred Heart Church was the first Roman Catholic church on the of Petite Martinique and the first wooden building. It was destroyed by a hurricane in the 1940s and the Church standing today was built in 1947.

Though Hurricane Ivan in 2004 dealt a devastating blow to the island of Grenada, remarkably, Carriacou and Petite Martinique suffered significantly less damage. However, in 2005, Hurricane Emily hit Carriacou, damaging and forcing evacuation of its only hospital and destroying or damaging hundreds of homes.