Map of Hog Hammock, 1938

Sapelo Island’s Black population and Black landownership both steadily increased throughout the 1800s. Following the Civil War and the failure of the U.S. government’s attempt at land redistribution through the Freedman’s Bureau, Sapelo’s Black people persisted and grew to a population of over 500 people owning over 1100 acres of land around the turn of the twentieth century. However, the Black population and land ownership have been in decline since this period. We recommend that the state fund and empower the Sapelo Island Heritage Authority to act to its fullest capacity to preserve Saltwater Geechee cultural heritage and land.

Read the full research brief here.

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