February is known across the US as Black History Month. Here on the island we celebrate the unique history of the Gullah people, who were slaves left behind by plantation owners that left them stranded after fleeing the Union Army. Against all odds, under the crudest of conditions the Gullah survived and thrived.
Hilton Head’s social and cultural history dates back to the early 1700s, and from the beginning, the Gullah people were central to the story. Enslaved, and then abandoned by plantation owners fleeing the Union army, they not only endured their circumstances, they displayed the intelligence, fortitude and survival instincts to maintain and develop a culture and a community that is vibrant, and rich in traditions that are alive today.
Their lives involve pain and suffering, but also courage and a fierce determination to survive and prosper as free, educated, self-governing people. Long suppressed and undervalued, the history of the Gullah people in Hilton Head is being more fully explored. Their inspiring story is an important part of what makes Hilton Head unique and beautiful.
Visit the Coastal Discovery Museum at Honey Horn, and take one of many tours through the Mitchelville site. You will visit a Gullah neighborhood and see where freed slaves first worshiped in the 1862 First African Baptist Church. To schedule authentic Gullah entertainment, you may choose from storytelling, lecture or drama, or ask for a Gullah banquet. Meet Aunt Pearlie Sue and her group of Gullah Kinfolk. Their professional Gullah Traveling Theater performs nationally.
#staycomfy and enjoy our beautiful and rich island history! Sign up on our mailing list to receive 10% off your next order for rentals with us.