Posts Tagged ‘St. Helena Island’

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

 

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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

 

Black Music Month on Historic St. Helena Island Launches with the Sea Island Sounds Celebration

May 25, 2017
Sea Island Sounds at St. Helena Market
June is “Black Music Month.”  This annual celebration in the Gullah/Geechee Nation will begin at the St. Helena Island Community Market with the “Sea Island Sounds Celebration” on Saturday, June 3, 2017 featuring songstresses, Mahoganee and GwenYvette.  Both of these dynamic singers will be releasing new songs and the audience at the celebration will be the first to hear them at the Dr. Martin Luther King Park on historic St. Helena Island on that day.  The event begins at 10 am and ends at 3 pm.
Due to the fact that the “Sea Island Sounds Celebration” will take place at the same time that Gullah/Geechees Queen Quet, Chieftess of the Gullah/Geechee Nationcommemorate the Combahee River Raid that was led by Harriet Tubman, Queen Quet, Chieftess of the Gullah/Geechee Nation will also do a Spirituals presentation to honor Mother Moses and the creation of these songs on the Sea Islands.  The Spirituals are the official music of the Gullah/Geechee Nation and the state of South Carolina.
 
DJ Kwame Sha of All Mobile Productions
Throughout the celebration DJ Kwame Sha of All Mobile Productions™ (AMP™) will also spin a variety of music by Gullah/Geechee artists that people may not be aware were natives of the area.  There will be an exhibition curated from De Gullah/Geechee Alkbulan Archive about these artists that will also be on display at the landmark St. Helena Branch Library throughout the month.  Many may want to view it when the new “Gullah/Geechee TV & Movie Club” showings take place there on Saturday, June 24th.  The Noon film will be “Standing in the Shadows of Motown” which highlights Gullah/Geechee Hall of Famer, James Jamison of the “Funk Brothers” and the 2:30 pm film will be “Reconstruction: The Second Civil War” which Queen Quet appeared in and sang for.
 
The Sea Island Sounds Celebration and the “Gullah/Geechee TV & Movie Club” showings in celebration of Black Music Month are all FREE and open to the public.  CDs, books, DVDs, craft items, and Gullah/Geechee food will be on sale at the Sea Island Sounds Celebration.  
 
For more information, email GullGeeCo@aol.com, go to www.gullahgeecheenation.com or follow @GullahGeechee on Twitter and Instagram.
 
Advance passes can be obtained from:
https://www.eventbrite.com/e/sea-island-sounds-celebration-at-st-helena-community-market-tickets-33637151626?aff=erelexpmlt
 
https://www.eventbrite.com/e/gullahgeechee-tv-movie-club-standing-in-the-shadows-of-motown-and-reconstruction-tickets-34806692755?aff=erelexpmlt

The advance passes will be used for prize drawings during the events.

 
Bring chairs and put on your dancing shoes for this celebration of
Black music!

Celebrate Gullah/Geechee Sustainability and Self-Sufficiency on St. Helena Island

March 26, 2017
Celebrate Gullah/Geechee Sustainability and Self-Sufficiency at the St. Helena Island Community Market’s 
Tunis Campbell Day
St. Helena Community Market Tunis Campbell Day
The St. Helena Island Community Market will open its second month of activities for 2017 with “Tunis Campbell Day” and a seed swap on Saturday, April 1, 2017 from 10 am to 3 pm at the Dr. Martin Luther King Memorial Park on historic St. Helena Island, SC.  The Gullah/Geechee Sea Island Coalition is proud to collaborate with the market on this celebration of Gullah/Geechee sustainability and self-sufficiency in honor of Freedman’s Bureau Commissioner Tunis Campbell who assisted with land redistribution on the Sea Islands.  Given that Beaufort County is now the location of the new multi-site US Reconstruction Era National Monument, the St. Helena Island Community Market participants seek to provide more information to the attendees regarding this aspect of history.   To that end, Queen Quet, Chieftess of the Gullah/Geechee Nation (www.QueenQuet.com) will do a presentation regarding Tunis Campbell at “Tunis Campbell Day.”
 
Queen Quet will also celebrate the anniversary of her first visit to the United Nations to speak to the Human Rights Commission on behalf of Gullah/Geechee people at the “Tunis Campbell Day.”  That historic event took place on April 1, 1999.  Queen Quet has dedicated her life to protecting Gullah/Geechee land rights and the continuation of Gullah/Geechee culture.  Her life has many parallels to that of Tunis Campbell.  She also served as a federal commissioner and encountered many of the obstacles to land rights protection that Tunis Campbell did.   Being a native of St. Helena Island caused Queen Quet to know what Sea Island self-sufficiency is first hand and she is proud to be a part of the St. Helena Island Community Market which continues to support self-sufficiency and sustainability.
Queen Quet will do a book, CD, and DVD signing and there will be a number of other crafts and musical artists and entrepreneurs taking part in the St. Helena Island Community Market which takes place on the 1st and 3rd Saturday each month.  For those that are interested in more information about the market, please email info@StHelenaIslandCommunityMarket.com or go to www.StHelenaIslandCommunityMarket.com or email GullGeeCo@aol.com.
 
Cum jayn we fa celebrate Gullah/Geechee Sea Island Self-Sufficiency!