Our history never ceases to amaze me as the first name I found on this roster from 1932 is that of Bro. York William Bailey….Sound familiar? If you’re from South Carolina or you’re an avid researcher who has visited the #PennCenter on #StHelenaIsland then his name should ring a bell in your mind !!!
Brother Dr. York Bailey was a prominent native of the island who was St. Helena’s first black doctor and served as it’s resident physician for more than 50 years. His residence still stands, built circa 1915 for Bailey who ordered it from a mail-order catalog.
He was born on St. Helena in 1881, on Cedar Grove Plantation, he attended Gannett school and graduated from #PennSchool and #HamptonInstitute, then studied medicine at #HowardUniversity, returning to the island in 1906. He lived in the house until his death in 1971. His career was frequently cited as an example of the success of Penn School in educating the newly freed people of St. Helena Island.
What’s crazy is that the education of these people was known as the “Port Royal Experiment.”
In 1862 Southern whites ran away from the Sea Islands when Sherman’s Troops took control the Port Royal Sound. They abandoned their plantations, leaving behind their belongings and some 10,000 enslaved people who found themselves suddenly free. With nearby #beaufort under the control of the Union army, Philanthropists and Abolitionists from the North set up schools for those newly freed to help them in the transition. Slavery had outlawed the education of people of color in this country; setting up schools to teach them everything from reading to cooking to wheel-wrighting seemed an “experiment” at the time…..smgdh
The York W. Bailey Cultural Center and Museum at Penn Center is named for our brother and if never there was a reason to visit before….Now we can follow the paths taken by our past Brethren.
He was a member of #SearchlightLodge8598 of Frogmore,SC