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Today In History: July 13

NASSAU, BAHAMAS – On this day in Bahamian history – In 1959, The Bahamas National Trust Act was passed in parliament establishing The Bahamas National Trust.






NASSAU, BAHAMAS – On this day in Bahamian history – In 1959, The Bahamas National Trust Act was passed in Parliament establishing The Bahamas National Trust.

The act states that The Bahamas National Trust was created “for the purposes of promoting the permanent preservation for the benefit and enjoyment of The Bahamas of lands, tenements and submarine areas of beauty.”

This act granted the BNT oversight of the country’s national park system.

Today, the park consists of 32 national parks covering roughly 2.2 million acres of The Bahamas.

Then in 2012, Curtis Johnson passed away at the age of 96.

Johnson was a Bahamian entrepreneur and marine pioneer who established the first commercial aquarium of marine life in The Bahamas.

Johnson was also an early adopter in local jewelry manufacturing.

He designed his first piece of jewelry at the age of 17 and gained and quite a few customers shortly after.

He and his wife Dorothy opened their tortoise shell business on December 16, 1944.

It was an immediate success, and their staff grew from two to 26 in a short time.

In the early 1950’s on the back of the success of his jewelry store, Johnson had the dream of creating a miniature aquarium above his store.

He gained permission to start building in 1953 and on March 17, 1967 his dream became a reality.

The nine acre educational and recreational seafloor aquarium opened in Chippingham Nassau brought joy to tourists and locals alike.

The aquarium was a huge success attracting scores of tourists.

The Bahamas Chamber of Commerce honored Johnson in 1976 with a distinguished citizen’s award. His high-quality products and creativity made him the top citizen in business.

After his retirement in 1993, Johnson consistently pioneered the growth of tourism, and commerce in The Bahamas for 49 years.

Then in 2013, The airport road was dug up by an unknown individual.

More than a mile of newly paved road on John F. Kennedy Drive between the Gladstone Road roundabout and the entrance to West Ridge was dug up during leaving officials stunned.

The machine that was used to cause the damage was a Caterpillar D8, and it was discarded in bushes on the lakeshore.

At the time it was unknown who caused this but the construction of the road got back on track despite these setbacks.

Then in 2017, former PLP Minister Ken Dorset was charged with bribery and misconduct of a public officer.

The former MP and environment minister was brought before the courts as he was charged with numerous counts of bribery and extortion.

It was alleged that sometime between March 1st and May 9th Dorset had demanded $120,000 from Jonathan Ashe knowing that he was not lawfully authorized to do so.

He also faced a 9th charge of misconduct of a public officer.

In March 2022, the office of the director of public prosecutions dropped the case by issuing a a nolle prosequi.

And finally in 2021, The Bahamas Embassy closed in Haiti.

Amid upheaval the Bahamian Embassy in Haiti closed indefinitely and the four Bahamian diplomats stationed there had to be flown home.

This sudden shutdown was caused due to the assassination of the Haitian president, with Minister Henfield saying the embassy will reopen when it is safe.