Passenger: What about the inhabitants? Where did they come from? Lecturer: The Lukku-cairi people were the first to settle in the Bahamas. They migrated from South America. They are related to Arawak people, and erroneously known as “Indians” ever since Columbus gave them that name.
Passenger: I read something about the lost city of Atlantis might be in this area. Do you know anything about the rumor? Lecturer: Well, many people have suggested possible sites for Atlantis. The Bahamian theory points to the flat stones off the coast of Bimini. These Stretch for half a mile and some scientists claim they might have been an ancient road of Atlantis. They are too perfectly placed to have been put there by an act of nature. Passenger: Did any other country ever claim the Bahamas? Lecturer: Yes, several countries have claimed the Bahamas since Columbus. Missionaries established the first European settlement in 1647. But strangely, about 30 years later everyone had left. The Bahamas were abandoned for approximately two years. Passengers: What happened? Lecturer: The main theory is that people left because of a great sickness. We know it wasn’t because of a lack of food; the tropical climate made food grow in abundance. Passenger: Was it the plague? Lecturer: No, that is doubtful as the plague occurred in Europe in the 1300’s. But Remember sailors and pirates were constant visitors to these islands. They may have carried measles, smallpox or some other contagious disease. Passenger: What other countries claimed the Bahamas? Lecturer: I’m going to give you a timeline to follow. (Points to board.) Please look at these dates. When I have finished talking, I’ll answer any of your questions. 1706 Pirates rule 1717 Bahamas British Crown Colony 1776 Americans occupy Bahamas 1782 Spaniards occupy Bahamas 1783 Spain returns Bahamas to Britain-Treaty of Paris 1804 Turks and Caicos Islands become part of Bahamas 1835 Slavery ends in Bahamas 1930 Sir Lynden Pindling is born (Bahamian leader) 1940 Duke of Windsor is governor of islands 1941 Unarmed us freighter “Mariana” is torpedoed and sunk by U-boat east of Nassau 1950 Britain allows the US to build a Bahamas military test range and tracking station. 1955 Freeport free trade zone. Off-shore banking tour