Exploring Savannah’s Black Heritage

Black History Vacation at Azalea Inn & Gardens
First African Baptist Church – 1st black congregation in Georgia

Savannah’s Black Heritage is not the most touted tour in our beautiful city and perhaps that is because people tend to step lightly when discussing slavery even after all these years. This subtle attitude however belies the magnificence of the contribution that Savannah’s blacks have given to the fabric of our city. Four inns of Savannah have decided to collaboratively create a package that will highlight some of the best but lesser known historical sites of our city’s black history, culture and heritage.

Let’s start with a quick history lesson. When first established, slavery was banned in Savannah, unlike our northern neighbor, Charleston, but it was soon found that early settlers were city-bred and not at all helpful for clearing forests. The slave act was rescinded, but by 1798 the direct import of Africans was banned, which eventually led to an illegal slave trade. The Civil War ensued, and eventually came Sherman’s march to the sea and the capture of Savannah on December 22, 1864, (later offered as a Christmas Gift to President Lincoln). Sherman met with black leaders at the Green Meldrim House on Madison Square on January 12, 1865, and from the steps of little Second African Baptist Church (c. 1802), Sherman read the Emancipation Proclamation which promised newly freed slaves ”40 acres and a mule.” Almost a century later, the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. preached the first draft of his ”I Have a Dream” sermon at this church.

In the more than 140 years since the Emancipation Proclamation, Black Savannahians continue to create history. Explore this rich heritage through our Black Heritage Tour at Azalea Inn and Gardens, the bed and breakfast of choice in Savannah, GA.

The Black Heritage Package Highlights are: 
1. Three days and two nights in one of the four specially selected deluxe queen rooms with check-in on Sunday, Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday in January or February 2012.
2. Day Clean Soul African American History Tour for Two, including admission to select venues
3. Our “Secret Map” of Soul Food Destinations and specific must see Black History/Heritage SitesCost? Priceless (or $398 plus tax and gratuity