The Igbo Character in Written History (I)

H. H. Johnston, on the 12th of November 1888, described the Igbos to the Royal Geographical Society of Britain thus:“The Ibo country is densely populated. Their towns are of a very distinct character, with rectangular houses well-built of clay and thatch, interspersed among groups of magnificent trees, which are purposely preserved and cultivated by the citizens. Among these are noticeable Dracaenas of great height, with red trunks and dark green spiky fir-like foliage.
The Ibo towns are never crowded, each house or little group of houses standing by itself in an independent compound. The open spaces in the town are kept scrupulously clean, being frequently swept with brooms made out of twigs and palm-fronds, which are industriously plied by the boys and youths who keep the town in order. In the vicinity of this settlement, there are dense groves of the oil-palm, and thriving plantations of maize, yams, beans, and colocasia arums.
The Ibos are exceedingly industrious people. They weave grass-cloth, and display a very marked aesthetic taste in the designing of their implements and textile fabrics, and in the interior decoration of their houses, in all of which, and in their social arrangements, they are greatly superior to the degraded coast tribes, who seem to have lost their ancient culture.
They are clever smiths, and make a good many implements from the iron which they smelt themselves from the soil, in their primitive forges.
The Ibos I look upon as the promising tribe of the delta. It is they, at present, who create the trade ; Ijos and Kwos - their neighbours on the south and west - are but middlemen, non- producers.
The Ibos are industrious agriculturists, and have fine herds of cattle, goats, and sheep, and quantities of fowls and ducks.” Remember the great aspects of your history. Your ancestors
Ø Loved and respected nature
Ø Extremely hard-working and industrious
Ø Kept their environment clean and well-planned
Ø Great artisans with the best of qualities
Ø Great businessmen
Ø Great taste in design and architecture
Ø Supported the family and community
Ø Great things are expected from them.
You can add yours too. Keep those great qualities in all your dealings.
Go out there and show the world the true Igbo in you!
Be the greatest marketer of the Igbo brand!
Igbo Kwenu!

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