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Bahama Bill. Bahama Bill was created by “Mayn Clew Garnett,” the pseudonym of T. Jenkins Hains, and appeared in nine stories in The Popular Magazine and Sea Stories Magazine from 1906 to 1924, beginning with “When the Light Failed at Carysfoot” (The Popular Magazine, Aug 1906).
“Bahama Bill” Haskins is a diver and salvageman on the Seagull, which is captained by Cap’n Blye, a yachtsman and adventurer. “(The) giant black diver was equal to six ordinary men when it came to hauling upon a line or heaving upon a winch—and he had been mate of a wrecker.” Haskins is
always ready for adventure, always longing for the dangers of the submarine; and ethical questions never bothered him at all. If the men he went with were all right from his point of view, he would stick to them, fight for them, and stand by to the last. It was his code, a code built upon the faithfulness of men who had known danger, and who had never shirked it or shifted it upon their shipmates for personal gain.
He goes to sea to make money via salvage, and says things like “Ah, I sees, yo’ must ‘a’ had dem jump de ship—well, we don’t want toe git nothin’ but water, but if yo-all kin stand a bit o’ dryness, I reckon I kin stan’ it too.”
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