NOAA

Interviewee Collection Sort descending Description Interviewer Date of Interview Location of Interview Affiliation
Leroy Beavers Georgia Black Fishermen

Mr. Leroy Beavers grew up in a fishing family in McIntosh County in Sherman Bluff, Georgia30 miles south of Savannah. His love for fishing, imparted by his grandfather, deepened as he grew older. He fished often while stationed in various locations during his 20 years of military service.

Dionne Hoskins Sapelo Island, GA NOAA, Savannah State University
Primus Butler Georgia Black Fishermen

Primus Butler was born on January 31, 1932 in Thunderbolt, Georgia—five miles southeast of Savannah in Chatham County. In his youth, he fished and learned how to swim in the river behind Savannah State University. Before he completed high school he was drafted for the Korean War and served one year. He returned and graduated from Beach High School and briefly attended Savannah State College until his GI Bill expired. Mr.

Dionne Hoskins Thunderbolt, GA NOAA, Savannah State University
Kenneth Dunham Georgia Black Fishermen

Mr. Kenneth Dunham describes his early life in the rural coastal Georgia community of Harris Neck. Kenneth describes his father's role in the community as a boat builder, and how lessons in woodwork, carpentry, and boat building have been passed for generations. Kenneth talks about (and demonstrates) how nets and "trap lines" are made, as well as recounts how the different fishes, crabs, and terrapins were caught in this homemade gear.

Jolvan Morris Townsend, GA NOAA, Savannah State University
Lucy Grant Georgia Black Fishermen

Mrs. Lucy Mae Grant was born in 1930 in the small coastal community of Sherman Bluff, Georgia in McIntosh County—30 miles south of Savannah. Growing up, fishing was essential within her family and community and throughout her married life. Her husband was a shrimp boat captain and they had three children. However, the family connection to fishing did not extend to her two sons, who hated fishing and chose to enter the military instead. Mrs.

Dionne Hoskins Shellman Bluff, GA NOAA, Savannah State University
Charles Hall Georgia Black Fishermen

Charles Hall was born in 1934 on Sapelo Island, Georgia—a small Gullah Geechee community founded on the fourth largest barrier island in the 1700s, 60 miles south of Savannah, in McIntosh County. Mr. Hall earned his Bachelor’s degree in Biology from Morehouse College in Georgia and Physical Therapy certification from the University of Pittsburgh in Pennsylvania. He worked as a physical therapist in Ohio until his retirement. Along with service in the United States Air Force, Mr. Hall served in prominent positions within community organizations in Ohio before moving back to Georgia.

Dionne Hoskins Sapelo Island, GA NOAA, Savannah State University
Herman "Hanif" Haynes Georgia Black Fishermen

Herman Haynes, better known as “Hanif,” grew up watching the daily ebb and flood of the Moon River behind his family’s property in Pin Point, Georgia—a small Gullah Geechee community founded in 1896 eleven miles southeast of Savannah, in Chatham County. The river played a pivotal role in Hanif’s life, as it was where he was baptized as a member of the Sweetfield of Eden Baptist Church and where he swam each summer with his friends. At the insistence of his family, Hanif pursued his education and employment outside of the crab industry.

Dionne Hoskins Pin Point, GA NOAA, Savannah State University
Otis Hayward Georgia Black Fishermen

Otis Hayward comes from a long line of independent, nomadic commercial fishermen on both sides of his family. In his teenage years, he worked as a striker on his father’s boat and traveled far from his small hometown of Thunderbolt, Georgia—five miles southeast of Savannah, in Chatham County—to follow seasonally migrating shrimp along Florida’s Atlantic coastline. Mr.

Dionne Hoskins Savannah, GA NOAA, Savannah State University
Griffin Lotson Georgia Black Fishermen

Commissioner Griffin Lotson reflects on his experience with the shrimp industry in Darien, Georgia. He discusses the role of fishing in the Gullah Geechee community in terms of making a living, ethnic identity, and culture.

Jolvan Morris Darien, GA NOAA, Savannah State University
Ernest L. McIntosh Sr. Georgia Black Fishermen

Ernest McIntosh Sr. and his four brothers were born into a crabbing family, surrounded by 2,700 acres of coastal saltwater wildlife refuge in Harris Neck, Georgia—30 miles south of Savannah, in McIntosh County. Although his brothers immediately pursued crabbing with their father, Ernest worked as a construction laborer until he was laid off in 1978. He returned to the waters of his childhood and began commercially harvesting blue crab on the five boats owned by his family. After seeing no long-term future in the crabbing industry from environmental and environmental changes, Mr.

Jolvan Morris Townsend, GA NOAA, Savannah State University
Wilson Moran Georgia Black Fishermen

Mr. Wilson Moran, historian and Harris Neck decedent describes environmental stewardship in the local oyster and crab fishery. He gives an account of changes in the fishery due to anthropogenic impacts including pollution and over harvesting. Mr. Moran concludes his oral history explaining his father's work as a commercial crab fisherman and how a working knowledge of the estuary contributed to success in the fishery.

Jolvan Morris Townsend, GA NOAA, Savannah State University