San Basilio de Palenque is a town south of Cartagena in the Montes de Maria mountain range. It was the first free African community in the Americas formed by escaped slaves. Palenqueros speak a creolized language based on Spanish and KiKongo -- the only creole spoken in Latin America with a Spanish-based lexicon and Bantu-based syntax. Linguistic and DNA evidence suggests original inhabitants of San Basilio originate from the Mayombe region of Congo. Funerary rites and music and dance idioms trace back to Congo and to Angola.