Posts Tagged ‘Gullah/Geechee Sea Island Coalition’

Celebrating Reconstruction in Beaufort, SC @GullahGeechee

January 10, 2018

One year ago, hundreds of people gathered together on historic St. Helena Island, SC in celebration of a major victory-receiving the Reconstruction Era National Monument designation for multiple sites in Beaufort County, SC at Gullah/Geechee.  Since that time, institutions and organizations have started focusing on the history of the timeframe from 1865 to 1877 in order to offer visitors to St. Helena Island, Beaufort, and Port Royal numerous places in which they can learn the importance of the era that followed the end of the United States Civil War.

On January 12, 2018, the public is invited to join the National Park Service (NPS) and park partners to celebrate the one year anniversary of the creation of Reconstruction Era National Monument. Festivities will kick off at 10 a.m. with a special program featuring music and remarks from the NPS, United States Congressional delegation and park partners at the Beaufort Arsenal, located at 713 Craven Street in Beaufort. The highlight will be the unveiling of a unique piece of art by Gullah/Geechee artist Sonja Griffin Evans to celebrate the park’s anniversary.

From noon 4 p.m., special talks, tours and activities will be offered at each of the four sites comprising Reconstruction Era National Monument:

●       Beaufort Arsenal – Tours of Beaufort’s downtown Reconstruction-related sites.

●       Darrah Hall at Penn Center – Talks, junior youth praise dance and programs on Reconstruction.

●       Brick Baptist Church – Praise dances, spirituals and educational programs.

●       Camp Saxton via Fort Fredrick site – Fort tours and activities relating to the first reading of the Emancipation Proclamation at Camp Saxton on January 1, 1863.

●       Old Beaufort Firehouse – NPS and park partners will offer a variety of educational information about Reconstruction and historic Lowcountry.

All of the events for the day are free.

The Reconstruction Era National Monument is dedicated to commemorating the period from 1861 through 1900 when nearly four million previously enslaved Africans sought to integrate into a free society and into the educational, economic, and political life of the country that they actually built.   The Gullah/Geechee Sea Island Coalition in collaboration with Gullah African Diaspora Artists (GADA) will host a conference that will delve deeply into the Gullah/Geechee story of Reconstruction.  The Realities of Reconstruction Conference” will be held at the new Mather Museum and Interpretive Center which is located at the historic Mather School campus which is now the Technical College of the Lowcountry.  The conference will give the participants an opportunity to visit several sites beyond those that are officially a part of the Reconstruction Era National Monument.  It will conclude with a tribute to Harriet Tubman held at the Combahee River where she led a historic raid along with Colonel Montgomery during the US Civil War.   Registration for this interactive conference is now open at

https://www.eventbrite.com/e/realities-of-reconstruction-conference-tickets-41538624143

 

Realities of Reconstruction Conference

Hunnuh cum and bring de famlee fa celebrate Reconstruction een Beaufort County @GullahGeechee!

www.GullahGeecheeNation.com

 

Advertisements

January 4, 2018
Queen Quet's Gullah/Geechee Snowman

Queen Quet, Chieftess of the Gullah/Geechee Nation (www.QueenQuet.com) built this snowman in the midst of the Sea Island Snow Storm 2018.

Well, 2018 has started off as a winter wonderland throughout the Gullah/Geechee Nation.  Folks were posting images and videos of snow in their yards and on their homes and cars as well as icicles on the trees from Florida to the Carolinas.   The storm which under went bombogenesis left the Sea Islands covered in white and then continued northward where many of the members of our Gullah/Geechee Diaspora are located.

Over the past several years, the Gullah/Geechee family has watched The Weather Channel and posted on social media while in prayer for each other due to hurricanes, flooding, and winter storms.   This was no different yesterday and today as we watched a storm that is being called a “bomb cyclone” make its way up the entire eastern seaboard of North America.

Before the storm left the Gullah/Geechee Nation it left behind not only snowmen, cold, ice, and many memories, but also the following heights of snowfall:

  • Summerville: 7.3 inches
  • Moncks Corner: 6.5 inches
  • Ridgeland: 6.0 inches
  • Charleston Airport: 5.3 inches
  • Goose Creek: 5.3 inches
  • Ladson: 4.8 inches
  • St. Helena Island, SC 4.5 inches
  • Hilton Head Island: 4.5 inches
  • Bluffton: 4.0 inches
  • Yemassee: 4.0 inches
Winter Storm Grayson has brought flashbacks to those of us that remember the huge snow storm of 1989 during which we made snowmen and took pictures of this novelty.  It was rare to see snow on the Sea Islands.  However, between then and now, my family and I have gathered a bit of the flurries and made miniature snowmen at least one time since then.   Although that part is a fun activity for family and expands creativity, the trees being weighed down by ice that break are just as with the trees that break during hurricane winds are not fun.  So, once again, we have to be prepared for more than snow days off from work and away from school.  We have to stay ready for emergencies brought on by the impacts of the changing climate in the Gullah/Geechee Nation.
The Weather Channel helped us capture why it is important to the Gullah/Geechee Sustainability Think Tank and the Gullah/Geechee Sea Island Coalition to focus on educating the community about how important it is to recognize climate change and to be prepared for storms and storm related emergencies and recovery:

https://player.vimeo.com/video/240678169?title=0&byline=0&portrait=0

A Vanishing Culture, A Vanishing Land from Weather Films on Vimeo.

https://gullahgeecheenation.com/2017/11/14/sea-level-rise-in-the-gullah-geechee-nation-featured-on-the-weather-channel/
We believe in being proactive.  Therefore, we are hosting two events that will allow Gullah/Geechee families to better prepare for and recover from storms and storm related emergencies.  Both events will be held at the St. Helena Branch Library on historic St. Helena Island, SC and both require advance registration:

Gullah/Geechee Preparing for Storms and Emergencies Workshop

The Gullah/Geechee Preparing for Storms and Emergencies Workshop will be an evening workshop specifically designed for Gullah/Geechee families to assist them with recognizing various aspects of climate change and how these impact the continuation of their cultural heritage and ability to remain on their land.   Participants will learn how to prepare an emergency kit and be provided with necessary mechanisms for contacts in preparation for, during, and after a storm.  The event is FREE.  Space is limited.  Pre-registration is required at
https://www.eventbrite.com/e/gullahgeechee-preparing-for-storms-and-emergencies-workshop-tickets-41537658254

Coastal Cultures Conference 2018-Emergency Preparedness and Cultural Continuation in Coastal Communities

Coastal Cultures Conference 2018
The 6th Annual “Coastal Cultures Conference” will also focus on emergency preparedness and cultural continuation in coastal communities and is open to people from around the world.   The event includes a Gullah/Geechee meal and interactive activities done by the Gullah/Geechee Fishing Association members.   Take home materials will be provided to all attendees.  Each year participants also engage in a field opportunity on the island.   Pre-registration is required at
https://www.eventbrite.com/e/coastal-cultures-conference-2018-emergency-preparedness-and-cultural-continuation-in-coastal-tickets-41538499771
All this snow and cold has many people already wishing it was summer time, but before we get there, we need to prepare.  So, we hope hunnuh gwine jayn we cuz de climate sho da change pun dees ya islandts ob de #GullahGeehee!

 

by Queen Quet, Chieftess of the Gullah/Geechee Nation (www.QueenQuet.com)

Queen Quet’s AFWLC Roundtable

August 22, 2017

Africa Fashion Week Lowcountry will be an opportunity for citizens and guests of historic St. Helena Island, SC to meet and engage with Queen Quet, Chieftess of the Gullah/Geechee Nation at “De Queen’s Roundtable.”  The event will be held at the Hampton House at Penn Center, Inc. on Tuesday, August 22, 2017 from 6 to 7:30 pm.  Admission is by donation and books, CDs, and DVDs will be on sale.

Queen Quet will present on “De Gullah/Geechee Ooman a Cut Above de Ress and Ahead ob e Time!”  She will focus on the fashions of Gullah/Geechee women and her work within the fashion industry.

Queen Quet's AFWLC Roundtable

www.gullahgeecheenation.com

 

De Wata Need We! Protecting the Waters of the Gullah/Geechee Nation!

August 15, 2017

“De wata bring we and de wata gwine tek we bak” is a well known Gullah/Geechee proverb.  The waters of the Gullah/Geechee Nation are critical to the continuing of the cultural heritage of the people there.  Gullah/Geechees still literally subsist due to harvesting from the sea.  They do all that they can to live in balance with the waterways and want to keep these waterways pristine.  To that end, Queen Quet, Chieftess of the Gullah/Geechee Nation, the Gullah/Geechee Fishing Association, and the Gullah/Geechee Sea Island Coalition are supporting the bans on the use of plastic bags which are being put in place in numerous townships on the Gullah/Geechee Nation‘s coast due to the numerous harms that take place with the sea creatures and the environment when plastic bags get into the oceans and estuaries.

In addition to supporting the plastic bag bands, they are supporting this petition by their partner Oceana to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA):

https://act.oceana.org/page/12931/petition/1?ea.tracking.id=email&utm_medium=email&utm_source=en&utm_campaign=defense&utm_content=NAT+-+20170814+-+NOAA+Streamlining+Regs+Petition+-+ND+-+SL+Winner&ea.url.id=1007464

Please click the link and sign the petition before August 21st so that ocean protections will remain in place.

Gullah/Geechee Nation Opposes Oil Drilling and Seismic Guns

The Gullah/Geechee Nation also finds itself having to fight against oil exploration, oil drilling, and the use of seismic guns in the Atlantic Ocean once again since the US government is attempting to reopen the coast to this.  We have until August 17, 2017 for comments to be entered with the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) in opposition to oil exploration including the use of seismic guns and to oil drilling.  We are calling on all of our supporters worldwide to let them know that you stand with the Gullah/Geechee Nation maintaining its cultural heritage on this coast and to that end, you want the Atlantic Coast kept off of the list of locations for oil exploration and drilling to take place.  You can go to https://www.regulations.gov/document?D=BOEM-2017-0050-0001 to enter your comments.

Tenki Tenki ta all hunnuh wha gwine stand wid de Gullah/Geechee!  Disya time, de wata need we!

———————————————————————————————————————————-

Tune in to “Gullah/Geechee Riddim Radio” to hear more about these petitions and ways to assist in protecting Gullah/Geechee cultural heritage on our coast:

http://www.blogtalkradio.com/gullahgeechee/2017/08/14/reconstruction-gullahgeechee-coast-land-legacy-and-justice-environmentally

www.gullahgeechee.net

www.gullahgeecheenation.com

 

Queen Quet & De Gullah/Geechee Standin Strong fa We Ancestas

July 3, 2017
DSCN4450
Queen Quet has been the elected head-of-state and Chieftess of the Gullah/Geechee Nation (www.QueenQuet.com) for 17 years as of July 2, 2017.  She has been standing up for the rights of Gullah/Geechee people for over three decades.  Whenever asked about this, she will let you know that she stands due to her faith and the strength of her ancestors.  Thus, she has effectively led a number of endeavors that have led to global recognition of Gullah/Geechee cultural heritage.   The annual event that she co-founded to celebrate this rich heritage while also supporting the businesses and institutions of the Gullah/Geechee Nation is the “Gullah/Geechee Nation International Music & Movement Festival™” which will be held on her home island-historic St. Helena Island, SC in the Gullah/Geechee Nation August 4-6, 2017.
ggnimmf-2017-fa-we-ancestas-jpg
When Queen Quet was enstooled on July 2, 2000, thousands of people from throughout the Sea Islands and around the world gathered at Sullivan’s Island, SC.  Sullivan’s Island is where more than 40% of all Africans enslaved in North America came through.  On that historic day of the enstoolment, drums were sounded at this island bringing in a new era of existence of people of African descent on the Sea Islands and throughout the Lowcountry.   For several years, Queen Quet and the Wisdom Circle Council of Elders continued to return for the “Gullah/Geechee Reunion” at Sullivan’s Island.  However, for the past twelve years, they have hosted “Gullah/Geechee Reunion Day” on the Saturday of the “Gullah/Geechee Nation International Music & Movement Festival™” no matter where the event was located for that year.  The event goes to different area of the Gullah/Geechee Nation and the African Diaspora each year.
This year, the drums are being called in from around the world in celebration with Queen Quet and the citizens of the Gullah/Geechee Nation as they celebrate “Fa We Ancestas” as the theme for this year.  On Sunday, August 6, 2017, there will be a massive ancestral ceremony and drumming at the Atlantic Ocean at Hunting Island, SC to close out not only the “Gullah/Geechee Nation International Music & Movement Festival™,” but also “Gullah/Geechee Nation Appreciation Week.”  “Gullah/Geechee Nation Appreciation Week” will be launched at historic Mosquito Beach just down the Intercoastal waterway from Sullivan’s Island on Saturday, July 29, 2017 at Noon.  (https://www.eventbrite.com/e/gullahgeechee-famlee-day-at-mosquito-beach-2017-tickets-33510881950)
Gullah/Geechee Famlee Day at Mosquito Beach 2017
Queen Quet is calling the entire Gullah/Geechee Famlee and all those that support keeping Gullah/Geechee traditions alive to come together and support these events.
The entire celebration of events under the theme “Fa We Ancestas” will raise funds and awareness.  Many people are unaware of how Gullah/Geechees changed the landscape of North America through their intellectual and physical abilities.  Many are also not aware of how extremely important it is for Gullah/Geechees to remained linked to their homeland.  To insure this, the “Gullah/Geechee Land & Legacy Fund” (https://www.gofundme.com/gullahgeechee-land-legacy-fund) was launched last December and will be supported via the “Gullah/Geechee Nation Appreciation Week” events.   The “Gullah/Geechee Collection” for the landmark St. Helena Branch Library and De Gullah/Geechee Alkebulan Archive which is the ONLY archive in the world totally dedicated to Gullah/Geechee history, heritage, and culture will also be beneficiaries of the funds raised.  De Gullah/Geechee Alkebulan Archive was founded due to Queen Quet’s leadership of the Gullah/Geechee Sea Island Coalition (www.gullahgeechee.net) which is celebrating its 20th year in existence.
The Gullah/Geechee Sea Island Coalition sponsors the Gullah/Geechee Nation International Music & Movement Festival™ along with All Mobile Productions™ (AMP™), the Gullah/Geechee Angel Network, the Gullah/Geechee Cultural Heritage Committee of Northeast Florida, and the Gullah/Geechee Fishing Association.  This year, they are being joined in leading this outstanding celebration by the St. Helena Island Community Market which is where people will engage with Gullah/Geechee craft artists and featured artists of the year, “Sonja Griffin Evans” whose “American Gullah” collection will be on display at the St. Helena Branch Library for “Gullah/Geechee Nation Appreciation Week.”  Ms. Evans will do an artist talk at the library during the “Gullah/Geechee Nation International Music & Movement Festival™.”
As Queen Quet says,

“Ef hunnuh ain got a drum, hunnuh got time fa mek or buy one!  

Cum ta de islands een de sea and drum wid we fa we ancestas!”

 
For more information about the celebration, go to www.gullahgeechee.infowww.gullahgeecheenation.com or email GullGeeCo@aol.com.