Ragged Island, Bahamas

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District of Ragged Island
Coat of arms of District of Ragged Island
Coat of arms
Ragged Island in Bahamas (zoom).svg
Coordinates: 22°13′N 75°44′W / 22.217°N 75.733°W / 22.217; -75.733
Country Bahamas
 • Type District Council
 • Total 23 km2 (9 sq mi)
Population (2010)
 • Total 72
 • Density 3.1/km2 (8.1/sq mi)
Time zone EST (UTC−5)
 • Summer (DST) EDT (UTC−4)

Ragged Island is a small island (9 square miles) and district in the southern Bahamas. Ragged Island is part of the Jumentos Cays and Ragged Island Chain. The crescent-shaped chain measures over 110 miles in length and includes cays known as Raccoon Cay, Hog Cay and Double-Breasted Cay.


Until recently it had an active salt industry, the salt ponds having been developed in the 19th Century by a Mr. Duncan Taylor, after whom Duncan Town,[1] the only settlement, is named.

Due to the decline of the salt industry (since its peak in the 1930s)[2] and the lack of adequate educational facilities[citation needed] on the island there has been a gradual emigration to more prosperous islands such as New Providence, Grand Bahama Island, Abaco Island, The Exumas and Eleuthera.

Fishermen say that the best bonefishing can be found on the Ragged Island.[citation needed]


The population of Ragged Island in the 2010 census was just 72.[3]

Duncan Town[edit]

Duncan Town is the only settlement in the entire chain and is situated within a bay of shallow water. The island relies on the "mail boat" for transportation to and from the major islands, as well as for freight and commerce.[4] The island contains a small air strip, a harbor, and a lighthouse. A tower on the south end of the island is easily visible from ships transiting the Old Bahama Channel.

Most of the inhabitants are the direct descendants of the original settlers and they bear their original family names, such as Curling, Lockhart, Maycock, Moxey, Munroe, Wallace, and Wilson. The familiar heritage and their remoteness have resulted in the islands being part of the “family islands” or “out island”.

Although the island is remote and sparsely populated, many of its descendants have taken important roles within politics, athletics, entertainment and business.


In August 2005, a contract was signed with TYCO International to deploy a fiber optic submarine cable in a self-healing ring topology, connecting 14 islands of the Bahamas; namely, New Providence, Andros, Eleuthera, Exuma, Long Island, Ragged Island, Inagua, Mayaguana, San Salvador, Rum Cay, Cat Island, Abaco, Crooked Island and Grand Bahama, at a cost of $60 Million.


The island is served by Duncan Town Airport. Upgrades to the Duncan Town Airport (funded by the European Union) were commenced in 2006, at a cost of $650,000.

Dock/dredging - The dredging and the building of a dock in Ragged Island commenced in 2006, at an estimated cost of some $3.5 million.


  1. ^ "Duncan Town Police Station". www.bahamaslocal.com. Retrieved 25 October 2012. 
  2. ^ "About Ragged Island". www.bahamas.co.uk. Retrieved 25 October 2012. 
  4. ^ Tidwell, Mike (1 March 1999). "Found at Sea". Washington Post. Retrieved 25 October 2012. 

Coordinates: 22°13′N 75°44′W / 22.217°N 75.733°W / 22.217; -75.733