A Direct Flight from Nassau to Green Turtle Cay

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.

With the exception of the few years during which Abaco was served by the luxurious Content, travel to and from Nassau meant a long, often unpleasant voyage on the mailboat.

The trip became much easier in the late 1940s, however, when Bahamas Airways began flying amphibious aircraft from Nassau direct to New Plymouth.

Direct Flights from Nassau to Green Turtle Cay

A Bahamas Airways seaplane at Settlement Point. Photo by Lionel Hodgkins, courtesy of Margaret Albury.

After landing in the strait between Green Turtle Cay and the Abaco mainland, seaplanes were met by local men in dinghies. Passengers, freight and mail made the precarious transition from plane to dinghy and were sculled into the harbour.

When the seaplane service proved successful, a ramp was constructed on what is now Settlement Point. Planes could land in the sea and taxi up onto the land to allow passengers to more comfortably board and deplane.

Under local agent, Neville Key, seaplane service to Green Turtle Cay continued until 1957, when the Marsh Harbour airstrip was built.

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One thought on “A Direct Flight from Nassau to Green Turtle Cay

  1. Amanda I flew on this plane a few times as a toddler in the mid 1950s. It was a Catalina PBY, a US Navy plane that had seen service in WW 2. It flew to HT, [where Eddie Malone was the agent] MOW, GGC? Maybe? and GTC. I don’t think it landed anywhere else. My dad told me that one time in 1956, we were flying north, and the pilot couldn’t get the wheels to go up, no matter what he tried, so finally, as the plane approached Hole in the Wall, they turned back to NAS, and how disappointed he was not to get to Abaco that day. I’m sure we made it there the following day. Then, in early 1958, the airport at MHH opened up, and we came in on Bahamas Airways DC3s from then on. I don’t really remember the PBY, but I do have a clear memory of MHH circa 1958; and there were 3 cars to meet the plane. 3!

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