Wade in the Water: Gullah Geechee and African American Life and Culture on St. Simons Island
Washington Revels Jubilee Voices will present an exploration of the Gullah-Geechee culture and life in St Simons Island, Georgia. The program, “Wade in the Water,” developed in partnership with Georgia-based Mercer University, combines stories of the Gullah Geechee community told through six student films, with music and spoken word. Join Jubilee Voices in this interactive program celebrating the history, lives and spirit of these proud people and their unique link to African culture!
The Gullah Geechee were people originally taken from Africa’s west coast and enslaved on the barrier islands of Florida, Georgia, and the Carolinas. The islands’ remote location enabled them to retain their West African traditions, sounds, speech patterns, food and flavors–many of which resonate in African American communities across the nation.
The program, originally presented in St. Simons in 2023, is part of the Coastal Georgia Research Initiative, a 10-year partnership between Mercer University’s College of Professional Advancement and the St. Simons African American Heritage Coalition. The Coalition is composed of St. Simons residents dedicated to preserving their Gullah Geechee heritage and culture, which is endangered due to several factors, including increased development on the island.
Black History Month is an annual recognition and celebration of the history, culture, achievements and contributions of African Americans and persons of African descent in U.S. history.