- Merikan, Merikins (n) – Demobilised Black Soldiers for the West India Regiment, and escaped slaves who fought with the British against the United States in the War of 1812, established in the “Company” villages in eastern and south-central Trinidad after the American Revolution.
Merikan- Caribbean Usage
- Keeping them away from the Trinidad slave population
- To encourage the opening of a new road from Arima to the East Coast.
Manzanilla Point and the area around it remained wild and inaccessible until the year 1822 when Governor Ralph Woodford settled soldiers [-Merikans-] of the disbanded third West India Regiment area not too far from the point.
Lastly, the various words and phrases from Trinidad & Tobago can be traced back to English, French, Hindi, and Spanish origins. Merikan is one such word that has its roots in the English language. Growing up in Trinidad and Tobago is interesting because the slangs can change over time. I have lived in the United States for 20 years now. Every time I travel back to Trinidad and Tobago, I have to reacquaint myself with the words and phrases that have evolved.