Bahamas: Country and Foreign Investment
Population, Language and Culture
The population of the Bahamas is approximately 319,031 (2013 est.), mostly concentrated in Nassau, the capital, on New Providence Island, and Freeport. English is the official and everyday language, although Creole is also spoken.
Christopher Columbus landed on the Bahamian island San Salvador in 1492. After various attempts at settlement early in the 17th century, the islands were settled from South Carolina; they became an English colony in 1718. Much of the population, black and white, arrived by immigration from the Americas.
Nassau became a tourist resort late in the 19th century; Pan-Am began flights to Miami in 1929. In 1954 there were 32,000 visitors; now there are 4m annually.
In 1973 the Commonwealth of the Bahamas became an independent nation and a member of the Commonwealth; it is a member of the UN.