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Today in History: August 2

THE BAHAMAS – Emancipation Day, a deadly crash at sea and a minister taken into police custody. See what events took place on this day in history.





THE BAHAMAS – On this day in Bahamian history – In 1973, an Associated Press article about The Bahamas’ Emancipation Day celebrations was published in the St. Louis dispatched newspaper. The article was titled “Blacks Celebrate Freedom, Whites Celebrate Enlightenment”.

An excerpt from the article reads: “Singing and dancing to the accompaniment of goatskin drums and bottle-and-comb music, negroes of The Bahamas celebrated Emancipation Day today.”

All business in the capital was suspended and most of the white people, too journeyed out to Fox Hill, a picturesque native settlement 10 miles from town.

Then 30 years later in 2003, two vessels, a ferry boat, the MV Sea Hauler and a cargo ship, the MV United Star collided nine miles off the island of Eleuthera.

The Sea Hauler was traveling from New Providence to Cat Island while the United Star was leaving Cat Island on its way to New Providence.

Reports say shortly after 1:00 a.m. the two boats collided and a crane on the United Star fell across the Sea Hauler killing four passengers.

Twenty-five people were injured, some of whom had to be transported to New Providence for medical treatment by the United States Coast Guard and the Royal Bahamas Defense Force. Seven others were reported missing.

And finally in 2017, former Minister of Labour and National Insurance Shane Gibson was taken into police custody for questioning.

He was later charged with 36 counts including 16 counts of bribery and 15 counts of extortion all in concerned with Jonathan Ash.

Two years later in 2019, Gibson was acquitted.