Many generational fortunes, which came to underpin the wealth of untold European and American families,  were made in the West Indies. The Bahama Islands was one such fortune maker. Properties once gotten, sat in trust funds and stock portfolios, eventually to be passed down from one generation to the next.

Valuable generational land was gained through:

(1) inducements to emigrate and minimal rents “quitrents,”

(2) Loyalists grants of property for allegiance to the British king during the American War of Independence,

(3) Land grabs by the early governors and legislative officials,

(4) ‘Quieting of title’

Through either of these ways, and probably a few others no one has thought about, thousands and thousands of acres of land, have been sold and resold for massive profits.

From the 1700s to 1834, wealth was made through investments in slavery and agricultural plantations. After 1834, valuable land itself, sans any encumbrances like inhabitants, became the hottest commodity.

By the early 1900s, these vast former slave plantations and slave owner estates, were divided into individual and multi-family housing lots. Plantations now became the ‘subdivisions’. By chopping up these vast acreages, once owned by a single person, and selling under financing or mortgages, fortunes were being made. Subdivisions were making the new land speculators, millionaires, ten times over, literally overnight.


Charlottesville was once a vast slave plantation and part of an extensive estate portfolio of one Rush Tucker, Esquire. Tucker also owned property on Exuma. After his death, Charlottesville containing 1,000 acres of land, located in the Western District of New Providence” was sold  in 1792, along with “The PEW next to the Pulpit in Christ Church.”

It is incredible to see that in 1866, Charlottesville was changing hands again, its 1,000 acres still intact.

Ironically, Charlottesville was being auctioned off at the same market, Vendue House, on Bay Street, where slaves were once sold to work its land, a century before.


On Monday the 12th March

At the Vendue House,

At 11 o’clock,

Will be sold

THAT valuable Estate, situated in the Western District of New Providence, known as, “Charlottesville” and containing 1,000 acres.

And immediately after on the property, 78 lots of Land situated in the Southern suburbs of Nassau, being the remaining portions of “Belvidere Farm” late the property of James Malcolm, Esq. deceased.

A plan may be seen at the Auctioneer’s Office.

Terms– Cash.

Feby. 24th. 1866.