TYBEE ISLAND, Ga. (WSAV) – The city of Tybee Island is reflecting on the Civil Rights Movement and the huge changes made in the 1960s. The moments in history now have a permanent place on the island.
The 1960s wade in is a moment in history Tybee MLK and the Tybee Island Historical Society never want you to forget.
“Those brave activists of their time, the youth that was both idealistic and intellectually equipped to meet the demands of their time decided that they would take a step in those turbulent waters,” President of the Savannah NAACP Chapter, Chad Mance said.
The young black protestors fought to bring justice in the fight against segregation.
“It was their courage because peace requires bravery,” said Alan Lewis with the Tybee Island Historical Society.
City leaders unveiled two Tybee wade-in storyboards that show the first and most recent demonstrations to happen on the island. Former Savannah Mayor Edna Jackson was a teenager in the 1960s who helped desegregate Tybee’s beaches.
“When you come across the bridge and you put your feet in the sands of Tybee Island and the city of Savannah, you know that you are a place that desegregated before the Civil Rights Act was passed,” Jackson said.
Organizers say its important to provide a snapshot of what happened in the 1960s. Savannah Mayor Van Johnson compares those days to today.
“And so for all of us that thinks about their struggle, we have a struggle too because there is still hate out there,” Johnson said.
“So what do you learn from these heroes? Well, I learned that standing up get’s the job done because now I am able to go to Tybee Island,” said Samuel Williamswith Tybee MLK Youth.
The storyboards can be found in front of the Tybee Island Museum on North Beach. There is another marker up for approval. It will be placed at Walter Parker Pier on Tybee Island.