Many who visit Nassau go to the Straw Market, a flea market of sorts. A decade ago, the Straw Market was destroyed by fire. They rebuilt a temporary home, but in August, Hurricane Irene struck the market again, destroying the giant tent they were using and damaging some of the booths and merchandise. They were set to move to a permanent structure in the fall.
Now last week a fire on Bay Street has completely destroyed the Pompey Museum, the temporary Straw Market, The Balcony nightclub and a duty free liquor store. Also lost was the historic St. Cuthbert’s Church. The new Straw Market was likely impacted by the smoke, but it was not under threat by the fire.
The big loss was the Pompey Museum, which dates back to the 1760s. The building, called the Vendue House, was used as a market, selling commodities of all kinds, including slaves. Books, pictures, records and artifacts were all lost in the fire.
If you are going to Nassau in the very near future, you will see the damage though the fire was several blocks from Festival Place when cruiser disembark. The country plans to rebuild the museum. The straw market vendors may now move over to the new Straw Market building.