Commemorations of the abolition of slavery are a reminder of the extermination of the Caribbean indigenous people and the 15 to 20 million African victims during the 17th-century triangular trade.
The governor of Guadeloupe urgently declared abolition on the evening of May 27, 1848, however, considering the 250 kilometers between Guadeloupe and its dependent island, the news did not reach St. Martin the same day. Today, historians agree that the abolition of slavery should be commemorated on May 28th.
The celebrations generally take place in front of the Lady Liberty Statue at the Agrément district roundabout, and are kicked off with a reading of the April 27, 1848 Abolition of Slavery decree. Artistic and cultural performances follow.