There is no way to have a genuine conversation about Gullah/Geechee culture without talking about real estate. The impact outside development has had on the barrier islands of the Lowcountry, and the people who were there before the golf courses, is huge.
The pressure is on-going; places like Hilton Head are already built up, but other islands such as Sapelo, off the coast of Georgia, are now really feeling the heat of inflated real estate prices. Couple that money with a dwindling population and it’s easy to see that the long-time residents are facing an uphill battle.
Disclaimer: it would be disingenuous of me not to mention the islands near Savannah where I grew up. I don’t know much about the history of Wilmington Island, and I can’t find much about it right now. All I can say is that it’s a middle-class, somewhat diverse place.
The other island that I lived on, Skidaway…well…not so much. It’s very much built on the Hilton Head gated-community model, complete with one of the 18 hole golf courses being named The Plantation Course. Yep, that’s not loaded imagery at all.