||National Symbols of the
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March on Bahamaland
composed by Timothy Gibson
up your head to the rising sun, Bahamaland;
March on to glory your bright banners waving
See how the world marks the manner of your
Pledge to excel through love and unity.
Pressing onward, march together to a common
Steady sunward, tho' the weather hide the wide
and treachrous shoal.
Lift up your head to the rising sun,
'Til the road you've trod lead unto your God,
March On, Bahamaland.
||BIRD Greater Flamingo
Flamingos are found in
three major nesting groups in the West Indian
region -- Great Inaugua island in The Bahamas;
Yucatan, Mexico; and Bonaire Island in the
Netherlands Antilles. The more than 50,000 birds
inhabiting the 287 square miles of Inagua are
protected by wardens employed by the Society for
the Protection of the Flamingo in The Bahamas,
through the Bahamas National Trust, a statutory
body set up in 1959.
||The COAT OF ARMS is a composition of things indigenous to
these islands. The preliminary design of the coat
of arms was prepared by Bahamian artist Hervis
Bain. The crest of the arms, a light pink conch
shell, symbolizes the marine life of The Bahamas.
The top of the crest is composed of wavy green
palm fronds, symbolic of the natural vegetation.
The Santa Maria, flagship of Christopher Columbus, appears on the shield. Wavy barrulets
of blue symbolize the waters of The Bahamas. The
shield is charged with a radiant sun to signify
the world-famous balmy resort climate, as well as
the bright future of the islands. A flamingo, the
national bird, and a silvery blue marlin, the
national fish, support the shield. The national
motto, "Forward Upward Onward
Together," is draped across the base of the
coat of arms. It heralds the direction and manner
in which the Bahamian nation should move. The
motto was chosen after a national competition,
which was won by two 11-year-old schoolchildren
-- Vivian F. Moultrie of Inagua Public School and
Melvern B. Bowe of the Government High School in
||FISH Blue Marlin (Makaira
nigricans) Found in both the Atlantic and Pacific
oceans, many persons first encounter this fish in
Ernest Hemingway's book The Old Man and the
Sea. Hemingway was a frequent visitor to The
Bahamas, especially the island of Bimini, where
the blue marlin is highly prized among the
game-fishing community. A powerful and aggressive
fighter, the blue marlin can run hard and long,
sound or dive deep, and leap high into the air in
a display of strength.
||FLAG Black represents the vigor and force of
a united people. The triangle pointing represents
the enterprise and determination of the Bahamian
people to develop and process the rich resources
of land and sea, symbolized by gold and
||FLOWER Yellow Elder Selection
of the yellow elder over many other flowers was
made through the combined popular vote of members
of all four of New Providences garden clubs
of the 1970s the Nassau Garden Club, the
Carver Garden Club, the International Garden
Club, and the YWCA Garden Club. They reasoned
that other flowers grown here such as the
bougainvillea, hibiscus, and poinciana had
already been chosen as the national flowers of
other countries. The yellow elder, on the other
hand, was unclaimed (although it is now also the
official flower of the United States Virgin
PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE
written by Rev. Philip Rahming
Pledge my allegiance to the flag and to
the Commonwealth of The Bahamas
For which it stands,
one people united in love and service.
God Bless Our
lyrics by Rev. Philip Rahming
music by Timothy Gibson and Clement Bethel
Bless our sunny clime, spur us to height sublime.
To keep men free, let brothers, sisters stand
Firm, trusting hand in hand, throughout
One brotherhood, one brotherhood.
Let gratefulness ascend, courageous deeds
From isle to isle. Long let us treasure peace,
So may our lives increase, our prayers never
Let freedom ring! Let freedom ring!
The long, long night has passed, the morning
breaks at last,
From shore to shore, sunrise with golden gleam
Sons n' daughters, share the dream, for one
One brotherhood, one brotherhood.
Not for this time nor for this chosen few
We pledge ourselves. Live loyal to our God.
Love country, friend and foe, oh help us by thy
Great God our King! Great God our King!
||TREE Tree of Life (Lignum
vitae) The extremely hard and heavy
self-lubricating wood from this tree is
especially well suited for bearings and bushings
of propeller shafts on steamships, as well as for
bearings in steel mills, for bowling balls, and
pulleys. The bark is used for medicinal purposes,
and many Bahamians steep the bark and drink it as
an aphrodisiac. For many years, dating
back to World War II, shipments of the wood were
made from The Bahamas to the United Kingdom and
the United States by the New Providence firm of
Duncombe and Butler.
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