In the book, The Cay, what city does Timothy claim as his home?

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teachsuccess eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In The Cay, Timothy claims Charlotte Amalie on St Thomas Island as his home.

Charlotte Amalie was once a Danish colonial trading post. It is now the capital and largest city in the United States Virgin Islands.

In the story, Phillip is stranded on a raft with Timothy, a West Indian man, after the ship he and his mother are on is torpedoed by the Germans. When Timothy replies to Phillip that his home is in the Virgin Islands, the young boy remarks that the old man is American. Phillip remembers from his studies that the United States purchased the Virgin Islands from Denmark.

When Phillip curiously questions Timothy about his African heritage, the old man admits that he has never seen Africa. He tells Phillip that he has no recollection of any other place except the Virgin Islands. Even more curious to Phillip, Timothy claims that he doesn't remember having a mother or a father and that he was actually brought up by a woman named Hannah Grumbs. When pressed about his age, Timothy confesses that he isn't really sure how old he is either. He claims to be more than sixty years old, but Phillip is skeptical about everything Timothy has told him so far. Despite Timothy's claim that his home is in Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas, Phillip still thinks that the old man is from Africa.