Enjoy Gullah Culture

Learn about the Gullah Culture at Brookgreen Gardens. Such an intimate part of the low country was the Gullah people and culture. Brookgreen Gardens brings it to life through one of their own 4th generation Gullah people, Ron Daise.

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Hello, my name is Ron Daise. I’m vice president for Creative Education at Brookgreen Gardens. Welcome here. Brookgreen Gardens was established in 1931. It was established on four former rice plantations. And because of that, Gullah heritage is on these grounds. What is Gullah? It’s a culture. It’s a language. And also, it’s a group of people. Another word used for Gullah is Geechee. Gullah Geechee people are descendents of West Africans, primarily West Africans who were brought to the Carolina and Georgia colonies of the 1700s. And the Gullah Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor, which was established by federal legislation in 2006, spans from Wilmington, North Carolina down throughout South Carolina, Georgia, all the way to St. Augustine, Florida, right along the coast. And it was here, on the four plantations, of Brookgreen Gardens, and also the 45,000 rice fields of Georgetown County, where about half of this country’s rice, during the 1700s, was grown right here in Georgetown County. All because of, not only the labor, but also the technological skills of the enslaved Africans who were brought from rice-producing countries of West Africa. Brookgreen Gardens offers several daily interpretive programs to inform visitors about the importance of this culture. Students engage in one of the history programs by walking along the low country trail, seeing the interpretive panels, and imagining what their lives would be if they were one of the children of the ensculptured figures—the plantation owner, the overseer, the enslaved African male or female. The low country trail is about a quarter mile in length, and public visitors can walk along the trail and listen to an audio tour. The program gives a fictionalized story about each character along the trail and their points of view about life and death. So, come on to Brookgreen. Walk through history now. Learn through the daily programs of Gulla history and heritage.

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