Sapelo Island Cultural and Revitalization
Society, Inc. (SICARS)
is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) corporation whose
mission is to preserve and revitalize the
Hogg Hummock Community which is located on
Sapelo Island, Georgia.
SICARS was founded in 1993 by Hogg Hummock resident and non-resident descendants who wanted to enhance the future of their community by educating all visitors to the island about the history. There will be increased awareness that Sapelo has existed as an African community for more than 208 years.
Hummock is the last intact Geechee/Gullah Community in the Sea Islands of Georgia and is comprised of direct descendants of slaves that were brought to Sapelo in 1802. Geechee/Gullah * people still maintain many elements of the unique West African culture, language, and traditions brought over from the "Rice Coast" many other of their ancestors continued on to the isolated Sea Islands from South Carolina to Northern Florida.
is from the Kissi Tribe in West Africa (pronounced
96% of the island surrounding Hogg Hummock
is owned by the state and cannot be purchased
for development. This, coupled with the limited
access to the community on the island (ferry
or private boat), creates an environment that
makes community members (who have called Sapelo home for many generations) subject
to stress and fracturing from land loss, speculative
developers, racism, and lack of job opportunities.
believes that our community can take responsibility
for our future only to the extent that we
can develop an accountable, culturally educated,
and well-informed membership.
Use and Community Planning
SICARS purpose is to address systemic
threats to the survival of the community through
land retention strategies, land use planning,
and policy reform. These threats include tax
and government planning agendas that directly
affect our community and encourage or directly
create the loss of descendant-owned land.
A Community Land Trust has been developed
and implemented by SICARS.
The human community within our rural and
resource-dependent environment holds the key
to environmental growth and development. The challenge for SICARS and Hogg Hummock is
to redirect today's economy both to sustain
the environment and culture, and to position
those descendants trapped in the economic
bottom to take advantage of opportunities
presented by our ever changing economic trends.
SICARS' New Multi-Use Facility Building
and maintenance of Behavior Cemetery, the
Geechee/Gullah community's 200 year-old
of a Cultural Interpretive Village where
Geechee/Gullah history, lore, and crafts
will be demonstrated
of Hogg Hummock Community Land Use Plan
of cultural tourism events organized to
educate the public about our Geechee
Culture and also as fund raising activities
of the SICARS newsletter.
SICARS has developed a land-use plan, completed restoration of the Raccoon Bluff Church, built a Multi-use facility building for SICARS, implemented a Community Land Trust to hold and protect land for our Geechee/Gullah Community. SICARS has made valuable contacts, completed the restoration of the Farmers Alliance Hall building, added bathroom facilities to the Culture Day site, added on-site covered parking and storage, and significant progress toward out mission. We have completed the Feasibility Study for the Cultural Village and are starting to develop the architectural drawings. As a community, we have maintained ownership of our land for over 130 years despite great obstacles in our way. While it is important to look at our success, it is also important to look toward the future and implement solutions to long-standing problems.
African Baptist Church - Raccoon Bluff
(before and after)
Retired Lt. Col. U.S. Air Force Reserve. Owned
chain of physical therapy clinics in Ohio.
Lives on Sapelo Island and Hilton Head,
Local Cell: (912) 485-2249
Home: (843) 671-4682
SC Cell: (843) 422-2678
Address: 115 Club Course Drive
Hilton Head, SC, 29928
Ulysses Simpkins, Jr.
Retired educator, South Carolina School System.
Cell: (912) 224-4584
Home: (912) 920-2268
Address: 101 St. George Blvd. 9-C
Savannah, GA, 31419
Gracie L. Chandler
Retired teacher/school media specialist who lives in Jacksonville, Fla.
Member of Bethel Baptist Institutional Church.
Cell: (904) 620-0999
Address: 10901 Burnt Mill Road Unit 1201
Jacksonville, FL, 32256
Karen Grovner Hillery
Medical billing/insurance specialist. Superintendent of Sunday School at First African Baptist Church, Sapelo Island.
Home: (912) 638-1903
Office: (912) 264-5768
Address: 1002 Mallory Street
St. Simons, Island, GA, 31522
Edna Laverne Holmes Clarke
Customer Service Manager for the City of Brunswick. Daughter of descendant Eldora Cabral.
Home: (912) 264-4168
Address: 303 Deerfield Drive
Brunswick, GA, 31525
Cornelia Walker Bailey
Sapelo Island historian, storyteller and business owner. Author of memoir God,
Dr. Buzzard and the Bolito Man and Sapelo
Home: (912) 485-2206
Address: P.O. Box 34
Sapelo Island, GA, 31327
Phone: (912) 832-4629
Address: (1796 Julienton Road N.E.
Townsend, GA, 31331
William T. (BILL) Thomas
Cell: (679) 936-8148
Home: (404) 660-4075
Address: 5069 Oak Farm Way
Flowery Branch, GA, 30542
Phone: (912) 485-2186
Address: 541 Nottingham Avenue
Brunswick, GA, 31525
R. Gene Grovner Jr.
Cell: (912) 506-6463
Home: (912) 625-0057
Phone: (912) 437-4123
Address: 1000 C.A. Devillars Street
Darien, GA, 31305