How I Found My Mom’s Long-Lost Kingdom!

We stopped over in Makeni, Sierra Leone the night before my Temne Kingdom naming ceremony. Earlier that day we had watched the Mende naming ceremony of some of my friends on the trip.
Nothing could prepare me for the joyful and spirited welcome that my Temne kingdom had waiting for us as we stepped off of the bus to meet my Temne village in Mile 91, Yonibana, Sierra Leone, for the first time. Wow!
My Temne kingdom welcome home ceremony is like nothing I’ve ever experienced!
Entering the Temne village as only the descendants of this kingdom could! The warmest welcome home after centuries of separation!
Temne Kingdom home-coming celebration continues……
More Temne Kingdom celebrations…..
The Temne women filled the village with their joyous songs, dance, and music. The ceremonial drum cadence felt natural as if our souls already had these beats within us.
They marched the men back to the back of the village to prepare for our Temne naming ceremony!
What came next was quite the surprise and a true honor! I along with 3 of my African American brothers from the USA were given our Temne names and made Chiefs of our Temne Chiefdom! My Temne name is Pa Kapri O’loya meaning “Village lawyer, and spokesman, defender of the chiefs and chiefdom; he who resolves conflicts.” This was an incredible moment in time that I will never forget. On behalf of my 4th great-grandmother Charlotte Johnson (b. 1808, Washington, D.C.) and her maternal ancestor who was stolen from this Temne village 400 years ago, I was overjoyed to have returned home to accept this honor, my new Temne name and role of a village Chief.
After receiving our Temne names, we were to begin our march to the main ceremony pavillion to meet with the rest of the village.
The Temne men marched us over to the main ceremony meeting place within the village. We were so proud and honored to be welcomed home in our ancestral kingdom. Listen to the sounds of the brotherhood!
Alas we are united with the entire village including our Temne sisters who were also given Temne names. A Temne kingdom welcome that I could only imagine until now!
Several of us expressed interest in land and the Chiefs showed us where we would be offered land for those of us who have expressed interest!

Published by ydstrong

Yokota is a banking executive, specializing in compliance, risk, and anti-money laundering. Yokota has 20 years of combined experience in financial services and has served as a forensic auditor and adjunct professor of Business Ethics, Compliance, and Fraud Prevention. Yokota uses his specialized skills of investigation, forensics, and detailed research, to provide successful resolution in traditional and forensic genealogy cases. Through his own family’s history and heritage, Yokota has developed a passion for assisting with African American and enslaved ancestor research. He uses traditional genealogy combined with genetic genealogy to solve cases and break through brick walls.

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