Culture and Traditions

More than 500 years ago, before the arrival of the first Europeans, vast civilizations flourished in what is now called the Americas.

Trade routes and commerce had long been established across the Rockies and the Andes, from the farthest northern to the farthest southern regions of the Americas. It has been said that this was the time of union for Indigenous Peoples, the time of the Condor and the Eagle.

The Condor represents the Indigenous Peoples of the south, while the Eagle represents the Indigenous Peoples of the north.

This video was made in April 2014, at a US Human Rights Network hearing on human rights abuses, part of the Mobile Center for Fair Housing’s Regional Justice Leadership summit. I told the story of Africatown’s founding, the introduction of the paper industry and pollution in the 1940's, decline of the industry in the 1990's, and attempts to bring in new industry in 2014.

Africatown's Magazine Point Neighborhood is situated on both the Mobile River and the Three Mile Creek. The part of Magazine Point that sets on the Mobile River is where that last shipment of slaves in America actually landed, whereas that portion that sets on the Three Mile Creek has a spiritual connection because it is the place where that last slave shipment would baptize themselves.

The Plateau section of the Africatown community is often referred to as "Africatown's Bedroom Community.” As the name suggests, the Plateau neighborhood's elevation is higher than any other area of the community. Africatown is surrounded on three sides by water. To the north is Hog Bayou, on the east is the Mobile River and to the south is the Three Mile Creek.

Undeterred by the blazing sun and high humidity of a mid-August afternoon in Biloxi, Mississippi, Tuat Nguyen and Bien Do moved nimbly around their shrimp boat, making last-minute preparations to leave for Lake Borgne, where the Louisiana shrimp season would open in a few days.

My city of Mobile, Alabama is a charming and picturesque Southern community. With its large antebellum homes and vast array of tall pine trees and massive oak trees overhanging Springhill Avenue, Mobile is a city that can rival any Southern city for beauty and scenery. However, the creative minds of the people of Mobile are one of the unique characteristics that elevate the city of Mobile above other Southern cities.

To commemorate the 155th anniversary of the beginning of the Africatown saga and the 154th anniversary of the landing of the last recorded shipment of slaves to this country, here is a summary of the "Africatown Story" from 1859 to today. (As told to me by Mr. Henry Williams as he taught Sunday School at Yorktown Baptist Church).

Last Friday, May 23rd, Louie Miller of the Mississippi Chapter of the Sierra Club emailed a number of friends and colleagues: "Sharing the tragic news that Linda St. Martin passed away at 9:30 this morning from complications due to chemotherapy. I would appreciate everyone taking a moment to reflect on Linda in honor of her body of work, passion, and commitment in service to the Sierra Club and the Gulf Community as a whole."

Pages

Subscribe to RSS - Culture and Traditions