The Bahamas

related topics
{country, population, people}
{government, party, election}
{land, century, early}
{game, team, player}
{island, water, area}
{company, market, business}
{rate, high, increase}
{household, population, female}
{black, white, people}
{woman, child, man}
{area, community, home}
{water, park, boat}
{day, year, event}
{utc_offset, utc_offset_dst, timezone}
{style, bgcolor, rowspan}
{service, military, aircraft}

The Bahamas (pronounced /ðə bəˈhɑːməz/ ( listen)), officially the Commonwealth of the Bahamas, is a country consisting of 29 islands, 661 cays, and 2,387 islets (rocks). It is located in the Atlantic Ocean north of Cuba and Hispaniola (Dominican Republic and Haiti), northwest of the Turks and Caicos Islands, and southeast of the United States (nearest to the state of Florida). Its total land area is 13,939 km2 (5,382 sq mi), with an estimated population of 330,000. Its capital is Nassau. Geographically, the Bahamas lie in the same island chain as Cuba, Hispaniola and the Turks and Caicos Islands; the designation of Bahamas refers normally to the commonwealth and not the geographic chain.

Originally inhabited by the Lucayans, a branch of the Arawakan-speaking Taino people, The Bahamas were the site of Columbus' first landfall in the New World in 1492. Although the Spanish never colonized The Bahamas, they shipped the native Lucayans to slavery in Hispaniola. The islands were mostly deserted from 1513 to 1648, when British colonists from Bermuda settled on the island of Eleuthera.

The Bahamas became a Crown Colony in 1718 when the British clamped down on piracy. Following the American War of Independence, thousands of pro-British loyalists and enslaved Africans moved to The Bahamas and set up a plantation economy. The slave trade was abolished in the British Empire in 1807 and many Africans liberated from slave ships by the Royal Navy were settled in The Bahamas during the 19th century. Slavery itself was abolished in 1834 and the descendants of enslaved and liberated Africans form the bulk of The Bahamas's population today.

Contents

Full article ▸

related documents
Senegal
Ghana
Foreign relations of Armenia
Honduras
History of Mozambique
Vanuatu
Slovakia
History of Slovenia
Samoa
Papua New Guinea
Aruba
Tajikistan
Java
Demographics of Lithuania
Diaspora
Demographics of Honduras
Demographics of Cyprus
Demographics of Mauritius
Demographics of Spain
Demographics of Chad
Demographics of Uruguay
Demographics of India
Demographics of Sri Lanka
Demographics of Namibia
Czechoslovakia
History of the Americas
Demographics of Haiti
Punjab region
Demographics of North Korea
Equatorial Guinea