‘OLE TALES, SWEET MEMORIES’ PRESENTED AT EMILIO’S MUSEUM

CUL DE SAC–Maria Christina Plantz launched her book Old Tales, Sweet Memories at the museum at Emilio’s in Dutch Cul de Sac on Thursday, November 4.

 

When St. Maarten’s current representative at the Kingdom Council of State heard from PhD researcher and former Radio Nederland Wereldomroep (“Radio Netherlands”) journalist Jos de Roo some seven years ago that he had found a set of stories that her father Charles Irving Plantz had written for Radio Netherlands, she decided that she wanted to do something with these unique historic documents that described St. Maarten in the old days.

 

On Thursday, Plantz proudly presented the book which contains 18 stories Charles Irving Plantz (1924-1987) wrote and recorded at Radio Netherlands during his law studies in the Netherlands.

 

The 200-page book, which went on sale in the Netherlands on August 6, contains a collection of stories in the oral literature tradition of St. Maarten, the island where Charles Irving Plantz was born. The stories that he wrote were phonetically written in “Sin Matin” English and broadcast to the English-speaking islands of the Netherlands Antilles between 1949 and 1952.

 

De Roo found the stories in the archives of Radio Netherlands during research for his PhD thesis and contacted Maria Plantz about this discovery of which she had no knowledge.

 

“I didn’t know that my father had written and recorded these stories, and that they were broadcast on the islands. He never told me about it. I do remember a photo of him sitting behind a microphone, but I didn’t know the specifics,” she told The Daily Herald and Amigoe newspapers in an exclusive interview in August.

 

The first thing that Maria Plantz, who lives in the Netherlands, did was to scan and safeguard the 18 documents her father wrote. This was necessary because it was unclear whether these would be saved as part of the archives of Radio Netherlands which was dissolved in 2012.

 

Plantz decided to write a biography and further background for the book so the reader could learn more about the author of these old tales with titles like “The Three Lil Pigs”, “Ole Johannes and the Cotton Thieves”, “Capin Johnson and the Lil Red Snapper”, “Sharks in Lamejo”, “Rumrunners” Plight”, “Damfool and Sensible” and “Smugglin Trick”. The biography includes the history of the Plantz and Beauperthuy families. with a family tree, old documents and historic photos.

 

The book describes Charles Irving Plantz growing up in St. Maarten, Bonaire, Aruba and Curaçao from 1924 to 1938, the move to the secondary school in the Netherlands in 1938, the impact of the Rolduc boarding school in Kerkrade, the war years and the period after World War II.

 

With Ole Tales, Sweet Memories, Maria Plantz took up the challenge to get the stories published to contribute to St. Maarten’s culture and history, to describe the grand St. Maarten roots, the French Quarter tribe and the life of her father, a humble man.

 

“I hope that this is a beautiful contribution for St. Maarten and St. Maarten Day 2021, by giving back a piece of oral history to St. Maarten,” said Plantz, who travelled to St. Maarten to personally present the book.

 

The official book launch in the Netherlands took place at American Book Center in September. On Thursday, many people in St. Maarten seized the opportunity to buy copies of the book and have it signed by the author.

 

Source: The Daily Herald https://www.thedailyherald.sx/islands/ole-tales-sweet-memories-presented-at-emilio-s-museum

 

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