220th Igbo Landing Three-Day Commemorative Weekend - May 26-28
Thursday, May 25th, 2023
St. Simons African American Heritage Coalition is slated to host the 220th Igbo Landing Three Day Commemorative Weekend on Friday, May 26 through Sunday May 28, 2023, at Emanuel Baptist Church, located at 1047 Demere Road, St. Simons Island, GA 31522.
For the first time in over two centuries, community members and scholars are gathering to commemorate Igbo Landing. The three-day event will include site visits, documentary screenings, performances, a symposium, and public presentations.
In May of 1803 a large group of enslaved Igbo Africans made history by resisting their enslavement in the most dramatic way possible. Inspired by a noble chief among them, they rose up and martyred themselves at Dunbar Creek on St. Simons Island, chanting ‘The Water brought us here, The Water will take us away’ as they walked down into the river, where they all drowned. Ever since, Igbo Landing has been a ‘sacred place’ and the story became known all throughout the Gullah Geechee world. The central message: You may enslave my body, but not my mind, not my soul. We seek to remember and honor these noble ancestors. We also seek to preserve the land itself and memorialize the story by official designation of Igbo Landing as a National Historic Site (or Monument).
The Savannah African Art Museum was asked to join the planning committee for this commemorative weekend.
“Last year we attended the Ibo Landing Marker Dedication at the invitation of the Georgia Historical Society and were honored to join the planning committee for this year’s 220th Commemoration at the invitation of Commissioner Griffin Lotson - Gullah Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor Commission,” said Lisa Jackson, Savannah African Art Museum Education and Community Outreach Liaison. “We are hoping those who have enjoyed our museum tours, especially our Nigeria Gallery which includes art of the Igbo people, will join us for this enlightening historical event.”
The 220th Igbo Landing Commemoration is sponsored by the St. Simons African American Heritage Coalition, Center for Igbo Studies (Dominican University), Gullah Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor, Coastal Georgia Historical Society, St. Simons Land Trust, and the Morehouse Mellon Public History and Digital Humanities Projects. For a full list of events happening over this weekend, tickets, and additional information on Ibo Landing, please visit www.igbolanding220.com.