The year was 1962, and it was a hot summer’s day in late July, when Sammy Davis Jr., the American negro megastar, arrived on the Prince George dock in Nassau. A crowd of some 300 people came to greet him. Davis was on a brief two day vacation before continuing on to perform at an engagement in Jamaica. But just a few days later, Davis would make other more eye-catching headlines. The internationally known entertainer, was refused service in an exclusive Bahamian restaurant.
GREETED BY CROWD AND ORCHESTRA
Sammy Davis Jr., acclaimed by many as the greatest entertainer in the world, arrived in Nassau this morning on the cruise ship Italia.
As the Italia anchored outside Nassau harbour shortly before 8 0’clock, Mr. Ambrose Hanna and Mr. Alvin Bailey of the Cat and Fiddle Club went out on the tender to greet the famous entertainer. A mob of autograph seeking fans crowded Mr. Davis as he prepared to board the tender to come ashore. A great crowd swell over 300–lined the dock as the tender pulled in while a portion the Cat and Fiddle’s orchestra played calypso tunes.
The crowd became almost uncontrollable as Davis set foot on the dock. He immediately went and joined Frank Munnings on the bongo drums.
Mr. Davis is here for two days vacation before going to Jamaica to fulfil a three-day engagement.
“I have one great desire while I am in town and that is to play some golf,” Sammy said. He has just completed a series on television shows. He said that he plans to visit the Cat and Fiddle Club tonight.
Mr. Davis is accompanied by his secretary, Mr. Murray Bennett; George Rhodes, conductor and pianist; Michael Silva, drummer; Terry Rosen, guitarist; Johnny Mendoza, Latin Percussion and Renauld Jones, trumpeter. They are staying at the Nassau Beach Lodge.
The Nassau Daily Tribune – July 24, 1962
Sammy Davis Jr. Refused Service
It was reported today that Mr. Sammy Davis Jr. famous American Negro entertainer, was refused service on Thursday morning in the Bahamas Country Club dining room.
Miss Gladys Tobett, the Club’s secretary told the Triune today that the Country Club is open to members only and that was why Mr. Davis was turned down. She said that he was told that he could get service at the Nassau Golf Club.
Miss Tobett said the Nassau Golf Club is also a members club with 15 coloured members. By an arrangement with the hotels this club is open to non-members.
Mr. Davis went over to the Nassau Golf Club, where he played golf and was served inside the establishment.
The Nassau Daily Tribune – July 27, 1962