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Dial family opens ‘TT’s first family museum’

Wednesday, December 6, 2017
Varuna Dial, left, with Barbara Dial and her husband Salickdip.

The Dial family celebrated 159 years of being Trinidadian by opening what they’ve claimed to be “TT’s first family museum.” The event took place on Saturday, December 2, at Campus House, Eastern Main Road, St Augustine.

Salickdip Dial, the man who put the whole thing together said the process took just over a year. He said pieces of historic memorabilia of everyday life were collected from family members so other relatives and members of the public can get a view into the life of the Dials.

The Dial family made T&T their home when on December 6, 1868, the Edith Moore sailing vessel arrived in Trinidad. Eighteen-year-old Madary Dial, a Hindu, fell in love with 20-year-old Muslim Oozeerun and they worked as indentured labourers on the Mon Plaisir Estate.

The surname Dial is an Anglicised version of the Sanskrit name Dayal, a name found mainly in India’s northern states among Hindus. Madary and Oozeerun had six children: Dabee, Prabhu, Bhawanie, Siew, Parbattie and Bhagratee.

Today hundreds of Trinidadians can claim to be descended from Madaray and Oozeerun. Some of the notable descendants of Dial clan include Anna Mahase, past principal of St Augustine Girls’ High School; Leela Ramdeen, chair of the Catholic Commission for Social Justice; Balgobin Ramdeen, Democratic Labour Party (DLP), who sat as the Caroni East MP from 1961-1966; broadcaster Anthony Harford; Government Minister Devant Maharaj; former Leader of the Opposition Stephen Maharaj ; ,animal-rights activist Nalini Dial,’Digicel Rising Star Neval Chaitlal; attorney Bindra Dolsingh; and, former assistant DPP Ranjee Dolsingh.
— Reporting by Shastri Boodan