Family Reunion Forum
Saint Simons Island, Georgia Reunion
On October 10, 11, & 12 the former African- American communities of Harrington, South End and Jewtown will come together for their second community Reunion. Current and former residents are encouraged to attend. Contact James Scott at 210-493-2623. These communites were once predominantly African-American and made up of the direct descendants of the former slaves or Freedmen from the local plantations. The three communiites were formed after the Civil War and were self sufficient with businesses and tradesmen until the 1970"s when gentrification changed the "flavor" of the community.
Few of the original families remain in the communities and the Reunion will provide an opportunity for residents to preserve the history of their communities and reconnect. The founder of the Chicago Defender, Robert Sengstacke Abbott was born on Saint Simons as well as the great Cleveland Browns football player Jim Brown. Tina McElroy Anser, author of "Ugly Ways" is a resident of Saint Simons Island. Saint Simons Island is also where Zora Neale Hurston brought the late John Lomax and his son the folklorist to record the Shanty Town singers who sang the old field songs. The Shanty Town singers became the Georgia Sea Island Singers and their songs are still being used in documentaries and in Oprah's movie Beloved. The island is rich in history too much to recount here in this space. Aaron Burr fled to Saint Simons after he shot Alexander Hamiliton. The abolitionist and actress Fanny Kemble, the wife of Pierce Butler wrote her Journal on the island. Our guest speaker will be Michael Gomez, Professor of History , New York University. A lively informative program and banquet are planned. The public is welcomed.