Pee Dee Black Farmer Storytelling Project on display in Florence Library
Pee Dee Land Trust has prepared an exhibit of storyboards featuring photographs and quotes collected during a series of interviews with six African American farmers in the Pee Dee region. The “Pee Dee Black Farmer Storytelling Project” is currently on display in the lobby of the Doctors Bruce and Lee Foundation Library in Florence through Aug. 18.
The exhibit also features books on farming, rural history, and conservation donated to the library by the Pee Dee Land Trust. “These storyboards and the interviews behind them represent an important step for the Pee Dee Land Trust in understanding and sharing the experience of smaller-scale, limited resource farmers in the region. There is a long history of African American farmers growing nutritious produce for local communities, and we wanted to hear those stories and share them through their words and photographs,” said Pee Dee Land Trust Executive Director David Harper.
Harvey Miller of Chesterfield explained his commitment to farming this way: “Young people of today don’t realize that, once the land is gone, your history is gone. My siblings moved away and their children have no connection to the land. Most of the children are educated and have high powered jobs that are here today and gone tomorrow – but the land will always remain.” The farmers featured in the display are Gabriel Bathay, Mullins, Mr. and Mrs. John Culbreath, Kingstree, Harvey Miller, Chesterfield, Clint and Debbie Nero, Scranton, Michael Streater, Chesterfield and Ivory Wilson, Mullins.
The project was partially funded by a grant from the Humanities Council of South Carolina, a state program of the National Endowment for the Humanities. After Aug. 18, the Pee Dee Black Farmer Storytelling Project exhibit will then circulate among other libraries and public buildings across the Pee Dee. To link to the storyboards for each farmer’s story, please visit the website: http://www.peedeelandtrust.org/events-and-news/in-the-news/item/black-farmer-storytelling-project