Chic African Culture Africa Factbook

Nature Holds Many Secrets | Hurricanes, Angry African Ancestors

Eastern coasts of Caribbean, United States, and South America, are in danger of being blasted by hurricanes wind and rain during hurricane season from June through November. But, why?

The scientific reason why is because of Africa’s Sahara desert dust storms and the transition of thunderstorms off the west coast of Africa. The waters in the North Atlantic Ocean are typically at their warmest while the Sahara is at its hottest from July through October, so the chances of a hurricane are highest during these months.

There are several African legends about the paths hurricanes follow; it is no accident they follow the routes of former slave ships.

African legend, the paths hurricanes follow.

Hurricanes are gigantic weather systems using convection, the movement of hot and cold air, to create dangerous storms. They are rotating heat engines powered by the warmth of tropical waters having three main parts, the eye, the eyewall, and rainbands.

Hurricanes cannot form just anywhere in the world due to the need for hot and humid air. They normally form close to the equator and move west or northwest. Hurricane Alley is a stretch of warm water through the Atlantic Ocean from the west coast of North Africa to the coast of Central America.

There are several African legends about the paths hurricanes follow; it is no accident they follow the routes of former slave ships. 

According to African legend hurricanes are the work of angry African ancestors stolen from their homeland exacting revenge for the millions of African lives killed in the Atlantic Ocean and those who survived the transatlantic forced into slavery in the Caribbean, United States, and South America.

According to NASA, scientists have long known that hurricanes that hit the Atlantic coasts are born in storm systems off the west coast of northern Africa. Hurricanes, the wettest of storms are driven by weather over one of Earth's driest of places, the Sahara desert.

Nature Holds Many Secrets, African legend says hurricanes are angry African ancestors.

African legend, the paths hurricanes follow.

Hurricane Isabel was born near the Capo Verde (formally Cape Verde) islands off the western coast of Africa. The same waters produced Andrew in 1992 and Frances in 2004. Hurricane Katrina did not form off the coast of Africa like many hurricanes but near the Caribbean island of the Bahamas.

The 2016 hurricane Matthew formed from a tropical wave that pushed off the African coast just southwest of the Cape Verde Islands in late September. Matthew Category 3/4 hurricane brought destructive hurricane conditions to eastern Florida, the Georgia coast and coastal South Carolina.

Matthew would likely be stronger than any hurricane in recent decades, including the 2004 hurricanes (Charley, Frances, Jeanne) as well as Hurricane David in 1979. By the time Matthew reached Florida, it traveled more than 3,000 miles.

The transatlantic slave trade began in the middle 15th century after Europeans began to establish trade for Africans off the coast of West Africa. The Slave Trade Act of 1807, an act that became effective January 1, 1808, ended the slave trade outside the U.S but not the abolition of the Slave Trade and not Slavery within its borders.

Legend of Angry Grieving African Ancestors named Hurricanes.

More than 400 hundred years ago, at the valley of the Ulanga River, was fought the Battle of Mbwila, the last battle of the long fight between the slave traders, and Nvita a Nkanga, also known as King António I of Kongo.

There Nvita a Nkanga perished utterly alongside brave male warriors and women and children. The survivors were taken captive and traded as slaves never to feel their native African soil under their feet again.

The weeping and moaning of the suffering since that battle, the sea and shore have been haunted. There are many strange things to be seen and heard along that coast.

On dark nights, thousands of voices are heard along the beach above the waves, chanting “Sunset, may there be no moaning of Africa's soul, when we put out to sea, a cursed wind moving as if asleep, as the winds are up, a sound of great shouting comes from that sea, like a battle cry of our fallen King!"
Did you know?
The majority of African captives were exported from the coast of West Africa, some 3,000 miles between what is now Senegal and Angola, and mostly from modern Benin, Nigeria and Cameroon.

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