A little bit of Rum Cay History
Thank you to Wikipedia for the following: First known as Mamana by the Lucayan Indians, the cay was later renamed Santa María de la Concepción by Columbus. Spanish explorers once found a lone rum keg washed up on shore and changed the name again to Rum Cay (pop: 53 1990 census). In the north there is a cave containing Lucayan drawings and carvings. Various artifacts from the Arawak period have been found by farmers in the fertile soil, which the Indians enriched with bat guano. In common with other islands, Rum Cay has gone through a series of industry specific economic peaks. Pineapple, salt and sisal have all been important industries, but competition and natural disasters, such as the 1926 hurricane, have all taken their toll and today tourism is the main source of employment. Plantation boundaries known as ‘margins’ can be seen all over the island, which date from the beginning of the 19th century when Loyalists settled here. Nearly everybody lives in Port Nelson where cottages can be rented. Settlements such as Port Boyd, Black Rock and Gin Hill are now deserted and overgrown.
The wreck of the 101-gun man of war HMS conqueror, built in Devon in 1855 and which served in the Crimean War, lies in 30 feet of water off Rum Cay where it sank in 1861. It is the property of The Bahamas Government and none of the contents of the ship may be removed. She was lost on Sumner Point Reef, Rum Cay, on December 13, 1861. All 1,400 aboard survived.