by Larry Smith
A new book by former Antiquities, Monuments & Museums Corporation chief Keith Tinker collates everything we need to know about regional migration to the Bahamas - from prehistoric times to the present.
Tinker, 57, is a historian who led the AMMC from its inception in 1998 until last year. Before that he was a civil servant in the Ministry of Finance and the Department of Co-operatives, also teaching part-time at the College of the Bahamas. He holds degrees in history from West Indies College in Jamaica, Florida Atlantic University, and Florida State University.
The Migration of Peoples from the Caribbean to the Bahamas was published last year by University Press of Florida. Unfortunately, although it is only 200 pages with no photographs, the hardback edition is expensive - over $70 retail - which will limit its accessibility.
Tinker describes migration to the Bahamas from English-speaking countries in the West Indies since Emancipation. His interest was sparked by the relatively large West Indian presence here - Trinidadian prison overseers, Barbadian policemen, Haitian tailors, Jamaican teachers, Guyanese surveyors - and the lack of scholarship on the subject.