• “The summer breezes over the marsh AND the MUSIC made me sway under the live oaks. Perfect weekend.”

  • “I had to quit after three helpings of Mrs. Cobb’s homemade peach ice cream.”

  • “This year the two young men reciting Langston Hughes and Martin Luther King. Jr. – all from memory! — really impressed me!”

  • “I clapped and clapped when the McIntosh County Ring Shouters compared words and saying in the Gullah language to school taught language.”

  • “Music. Music. Music.”

  • “I enjoyed watching Stanley knit the cast nets.”


Village Cemetery 
Union Memorial (Strangers)
and African-American neighborhoods

Amy Roberts will guide you through the stories of the persons buried in these historic cemeteries including Bessie Jones who is buried at Strangers Cemetery. Each walking tour begins at 10 a.m. Cost $25 per person. Call 912-634-0330 for reservations and more information on meeting places. Hosted by St. Simons African American Heritage Coalition.

Tributes to the Musical Heritage of Bessie Jones and the Georgia Sea Island Singers

February 25-28, 2016

In October 1959 legendary American folklorist and musicologist Alan Lomax recorded Bessie Jones, John Davis, Peter Davis, Emma Ramsay and others at the Harrington School on St. Simons Island. With Lomax’s help, The Georgia Sea Island Singers went on to perform at The White House, freedom marches, folk festivals, the Olympics, and (their favorite) schools across the United States. Thanks to their efforts the musical traditions and stories of coastal Georgia have been shared with the world and saved through the archives for future generations. The following events have been planned on the occasion of the repatriation of the Lomax interviews and recordings from the collections of The Association for Cultural Equity and The Library of Congress to the archives at The Coastal Georgia Historical Society.

“Around the World and Back Again”

Recollections and Tributes for the Georgia Sea Island Singers
Thursday, February 25, 6 p.m. A.W. Jones Heritage Center

Hosted by the Coastal Georgia Historical Society. Special guests include Anna Lomax Wood (Association for Cultural Equity), Todd Harvey (archivist, American Folklife Center of the Library of Congress), and Frankie Quimby (Georgia Sea Island Singers). Free and open to the public. Visit saintsimonslighthouse.org to register.

Symposium to Celebrate Gullah Geechee Traditions of Coastal Georgia

Friday, February 26, Noon-1:30 p.m. Stembler Theater, College of Coastal Georgia

Saving and Sharing Traditional Music of Coastal Georgia: Alan Lomax, Bessie Jones, Frankie Quimby, and the Georgia Sea Island Singers

Panel discussion featuring Anna Lomax Woods (ACE, Association for Cultural Equity), Todd Harvey (Curator, Alan Lomax Collection American Folklife Center, Library of Congress), and Dr, Eric Crawford, College of Coastal Carolina. Special guest: Frankie Quimby, leader of Georgia Sea Island Singers

The Georgia Sea Island Festival, June 4 and 5, 2016

Bessie Jones and Frankie Quimby started the first Georgia Sea Island Festival in 1977. For nearly forty years this annual event has highlighted the music, arts, crafts, and food of Georgia’s sea islands. Hope to see you at Gascoigne Park! www.ssiheritagecoalition.org.