The Beginning of Modern Tourism in Abaco

Every day this week, as a lead up to my Marsh Harbour book signing on Saturday, May 13th, I’ll be sharing historic Abaco photographs and brief excerpts from my new book, Those Who Stayed.

When Abaco’s trusty, long-serving mailboat, the Priscilla, was destroyed in the 1932 hurricane, she was replaced by the Content, a converted luxury yacht.

The mailboat CONTENT - the beginning of modern tourism in Abaco, Bahamas

The mailboat Content (Image courtesy of Eric Wiberg, Mailboats Bahamas, and Earl McMillen, McMillen Yachts, Inc.)

Originally owned by a West Palm Beach millionaire, the 120-foot Content had been purchased by the R.W. Sawyer Co. of Nassau, and converted to a mailboat, captained by Green Turtle Cay’s Roland Roberts and Stanley Weatherford.

Relative to previous mailboats (and not surprising, given her past) the Content‘s accommodations were deluxe, and made getting to and from Abaco considerably more appealing.

“It was like a cruise ship,” says Green Turtle Cay’s Vertrum Lowe. “People would come on the Content and stay overnight. Archie Lowe and Lionel Hodgkins would go out to the dock and play music. And the fellows would dive for coins.”

Though no doubt a passenger favourite, the Content proved less than suitable as a mailboat, and ultimately, she was taken out of service and replaced.

But by introducing many new visitors to Abaco – some of whom later returned to buy property and build vacation homes – she laid the foundation for Abaco’s modern tourist industry.






  5 comments for “The Beginning of Modern Tourism in Abaco

  1. May 10, 2017 at 6:29 am

    Great idea for a history series, Amanda – and best of luck with the MH signing.

  2. May 9, 2018 at 6:33 am


    • May 9, 2018 at 8:33 pm

      Hi, Sidney. I didn’t realize that. Do you have any photos of him? Would love to have one.


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