St Croix Usvi Cane Bay


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Due to Saint Croix's history of immigration, there is much debate as to what constitutes a native Crucian. The consensus in Crucian society is that if one is bahn ya ("born here" in Crucian dialect) on Saint Croix, they can claim to be Crucian, but not necessarily a native Crucian. Those considered to be the native Crucians (or by the more politically correct term: ancestral native Crucian) of Saint Croix are persons who can trace their ancestry to the era prior to U. S. Virgin Islands acquisition of American citizenship in 1927. Ancestral native Crucians (approximately one-fourth to one-third of Saint Croix's population) largely consist of the descendants of enslaved Africans brought to the island by Europeans during the 18th and 19th centuries, as well as the descendants of paid laborers recruited by the Danes from the British and Dutch West Indies after emancipation in 1848. As on other Caribbean islands, many ancestral natives are also descended from European settlers and planters that migrated to the West Indies during the 17th, 18th, and 19th centuries. Due to a low number of European females in the colonial West Indies, many European males in colonial Saint Croix produced offspring with the majority African population, whose mixed-heritage descendants bear the surnames of their European ancestors. In addition, there are also a handful of ancestral families on the island (traditionally known as bukra) of full European ancestry.