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Race and Class in the Colonial Bahamas, 1880-1960$
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Gail Saunders

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780813062549

Published to Florida Scholarship Online: January 2017

DOI: 10.5744/florida/9780813062549.001.0001

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World War I and Prohibition

World War I and Prohibition

4 World War I and Prohibition
Race and Class in the Colonial Bahamas, 1880-1960

Gail Saunders

University Press of Florida

Chapter 4 examines World War I, Garveyism, and prohibition in the context of race relations in the Bahamas. Though black and mixed race Bahamians were eager to join the war effort, the British government’s unwillingness to accept nonwhite colonial enlistees at the beginning of the war and its blanket refusal to appoint nonwhite commissioned officers dampened this enthusiasm. World War I veteran Etienne Dupuch—later editor of the Nassau Tribune and 24-year member of the Bahamian House of Assembly—was deeply affected by his war experiences and determined on his return to the Bahamas to be instrumental in breaking down the barriers of racial discrimination there. In the meantime, until 1924 when the John Reed Act virtually excluded Bahamians from the Florida market, Bahamian migrant workers living in Florida moved frequently between Miami and Nassau. In their travels, they came in contact with Garveyism and spread Marcus Garvey’s ideas of race pride; many who lived in Florida joined the Universal Negro Improvement Association (UNIA).

Keywords:   Marcus Garvey, Garveyism, World War I, racial discrimination, Etienne Dupuch, Miami, Florida, NassauJohn Reed Act, UNIA (Universal Negro Improvement Association)

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