Settlers from what we know now as Cuba discovered the shallow islands of the Bahamas as early as 300 to 400 AD. It was not until 900 to 1500 AD that the Lucayan people settled on the islands where they thrived peacefully. Christopher Columbus, in search of the New World, arrived on the islands in 1492. Realizing how shallow the seas were, he named the islands, baja mar, in other words, shallow sea, in what is now known as the Islands of Bahamas.
Not long after Columbus’ arrival, the 40,0000 Lucayan’s way of life was disrupted and were easily enslaved by Columbus. In about 25 years, there were no traces of the second settlers as they were made extinct by hardships, slavery, and diseases.
Eleutheran Adventurers were the next settlers and these English Puritans arrived in 1649. They were in search of religious freedom but were met with food shortages. This was a year after the Bahamas had become a British colony and it remained so for 325 years until its independence on July 10, 1973.
The Bahamas is still a Commonwealth nation and Nassau, which was once its commercial port, carries a lot of history. Here is a short tour of Nassau to discover more of the Bahamas’ colonial history.