Corey Alston

Our mission is to preserve and celebrate Gullah Geechee Culture, Community, and Crafts. By actively engaging and educating the community on Gullah Culture we create opportunities to save our special places, maintain vibrant traditions, enhance community and cultural pride, support economic and social transformation and advance the appreciation and understanding of the Gullah Geechee’s important past, and it’s continuing contributions to the American Story.


The Gullah Geechee people are the descendants of West and Central Africans who were enslaved and bought to the lower Atlantic states of North Carolina, South Carolina, Florida, and Georgia to work on the coastal rice, Sea Island cotton and indigo plantations.


Gullah Geechee is a unique, creole language spoken in the coastal areas of North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, and Florida. The vocabulary and grammatical roots come from African and European languages. It is the only distinctly, African creole language in the United States and it has influenced traditional Southern vocabulary and speech patterns.


Today’s Gullah Geechee arts and crafts are the result of products designed by their ancestors out of necessity for daily living such as making cast nets for fishing, basket weaving for agriculture and textile arts for clothing and warmth.


Enslaved Africans were exposed to Christian religious practices in several ways and incorporated elements that were meaningful to them into their African rooted system of beliefs. These values included the belief in a God, community above individuality, respect for elders, kinship bonds, and ancestors; respect for nature, and honoring the continuity of life and the afterlife.

Gullah Geechee

The Sweetgrass Basket is South Carolina's official state handcraft

The Coiled Sweetgrass Basket

A significant example of African cultural heritage that was transported across the Atlantic by enslaved African people.

A Gift From God

Sweetgrass basket sewing is viewed as a gift from god. The craft, handed down from generation to generation is usually learned from childhood. Baskets require a great deal of patience and creativity, as there are no set patterns.


After the 1890s, sweetgrass baskets began to evolve from agricultural implements to household items. Sweetgrass, a softer, finer straw, replaced bulrush as the primary material.

Leaving a Mark

In 1997, a Historical marker was erected to commemorate the legacy and history of sweetgrass baskets and their makers

Caring for your Basket

Because the grasses used in these baskets come from swamps and marsh areas water will not hurt them. To clean, gently spray the basket with cold water. Then, thoroughly air dry. this is the only care required.