photo © by Chad Finer
This photograph was taken in 1969 near the village of Vaama in the Nongowa Chiefdom of Kenema District. Situated near the River Moa, this was a very typical upland farm of about 2 or 3 acres. Also typical is the farm house, which was more of a shelter. In this photo the land had been prepared by the slash (with machete) and burn method, and rice had been planted. A rice meal is being prepared by the woman in the picture while her son walks off to the left. This farm was made by my friend Pa Sam and his wife (of Vaama). The small Mende village of Vaama was situated about a mile or so from here. It was a village of several related people and families that sat next to the River Moa. There was no road into Vaama and no modern conveniences. Yet folks maintained their independence there. A ferry from the river's edge there crossed over into Dama Chiefdom.