BBQ Fundraiser Held March 4, 2011 to benefit construction efforts
“A look into the Past - The Cultural Heritage of African-Americans during the Civil War/ Post- Civil War Era on the Savannah River Plantations”
Port Wentworth, Georgia | Port Wentworth, Georgia and the landscapes surrounding the Savannah River are rich with centuries of history and cultural heritage unknown to many. The area of Port Wentworth and the many plantations that used to exist along the banks of the Savannah River played an integral part in the early history of Georgia’s establishment, economy, and impact on the world as a whole. For those passing through or locals on their way, there is very little that remains giving evidence to the fact that this area helped to shape our state and the nation, until now.
The Houston Project - Historic Praise House Site, consists of the restoration/reconstruction of a Civil War era African-American praise house, and preservation of the adjacent civil war era/ post-civil war era cemetery that was originally a part of a Historic Rice Plantation located on the Savannah River. Houston was located in the areas known as the Richmond-Oak Grove Plantation and Mulberry Grove Plantation, where Eli Whitney invented the cotton gin in 1793. The restored structure/site will serve as a cultural heritage and interpretive educational site as well as a heritage museum containing information about the significant national and local histories of the Port Wentworth area as well as the City of Port Wentworth and the history of the Savannah River Plantations. Rich tradition and remnants of the early African-American culture are displayed along with several early graves at the site with markings from the Gullah/Geechee culture. This site exhibits the roots of early African-Americans and their culture during this era of Georgia history and plays an important role in Georgia’s Civil War story. The Houston Baptist Church was organized under the leadership of Rev. Ulysses L. Houston, Minister of the First Bryan Baptist Church in Savannah.
Rev. Houston attended the meeting at General Sherman’s Savannah Headquarters in January 1865 which resulted in Special Field Order No.15 (the redistribution of confiscated coastal land in 40 acre tracts to newly freed slaves.) This site is the location of the praise house that existed during the plantation era and named after Rev. Houston along with the remnants of the land tracts and burials of the newly freed slaves. This site is all that remains, by means of physical manifestation & site features, of much of this significant period of early Georgia history.
The site is in the process of being preserved in partnership with local fundraising efforts and the help of many local organizations including: The City of Port Wentworth, The Port Wentworth Chamber of Commerce, The North Port Wentworth Citizens Council, Habitat for Humanity, The Boy Scouts of America, The S.E.A.R.C.H. Institute, and Savannah Technical College’s Historic Preservation Department.
Please help support this important community project by participating in the BBQ Fundraiser sponsored by the Port Wentworth Chamber of Commerce, the City of Port Wentworth, the North Port Wentworth Citizens Council, Dampier Construction, the S.E.A.R.C.H. Institute, Publix of Pooler and Sam’s Club held on March 4th, 2011 between the hours of 10:30am and 5:00pm.
Dinners are available for carry out at the P.B. Edwards, Jr. Gym in Port Wentworth. Delivery is also available for orders of 5 or more.
Dinners are $7.00 each and include Pulled BBQ Pork, Green Beans, Potato Salad, Roll & Dessert. Please call the Port Wentworth Chamber at 912.965.1999 to place your order today!
For more information about The Houston Project- Historic Praise House