Savannah was an important Port of Entry for slaves. In 1859 the largest sale of slaves in US history, often referred to as the “The Weeping Time,” took place there. Slave barracoons (holding areas for the confinement of slaves) and cemeteries with important markings are some of the sites in our Historic Tour of Savannah.
The A.S. Varn & Son Oyster and Crab Factory has been reopened as the Pin Point Heritage Museum celebrating the life, work and history of this Gullah/Geechee community that was founded by freedmen where family, religion and work were deeply connected to the water.
The Penn Center, on St. Helena Island, South Carolina, was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1974. It is among the country’s first schools for freed slaves where they were allowed to govern themselves. Today, Penn Center is one of the most significant African-American historical and cultural institutions in existence.
The Georgia Historical Society, one of the most significant archives on Georgia history, holds hundreds of primary sources including Lydia Parrish’s notes for Slave Songs of the Georgia Sea Islands and photographs by Muriel Bell and Malcolm Bell Jr. in Drums and Shadows: Survival Studies among the Georgia Coastal Negroes.
Sapelo Island, a small barrier island located in McIntosh County, GA, is home to 47 residents, descendants of slaves who lived on Thomas Spaldings’s plantation in the early 19th century. The tour by resident and cultural historian Cornelia Bailey includes visits to Hog Hammock, Reynolds Mansion, and other historic ruins on the island.