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Old 01-06-2009, 03:40 PM
 
119 posts, read 443,041 times
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I started reading this book called "Praying for Sheetrock"...a very interesting account of McIntosh County back in the 1970s, and I look forward to continuing reading it. However, I am very astonished at how this county was bypassed by the civil rights movement completely. I am not going to say that a magic wand suddenly was going to fix everything right after the laws of the 60s were passed, but it seemed no progress was made at all even a decade after they were enacted (complete segregation, most black people desperately poor, living without electricity/running water, no political power despite being the majority, etc). What makes this more astonishing is that this county is directly on the main highway from Miami to New York (US 17 at the time, now I-95). You would figure that the "Yankee" snowbirds traveling down each year would have said something...and I would assume that many black travelers took the same road as well. My grandparents and parents drove down to Florida all the time, so I am sure they passed through McIntosh at some point.

I am just curious about if this depiction of this county is accurate, and why nothing was done from outside sources (it took an unemployed black man living in the county to generate change).
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Old 01-06-2009, 08:24 PM
 
Location: St Simons Island, GA
23,120 posts, read 36,477,500 times
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Oh, yeah, that was definitely McIntosh in that era...it was the little fiefdom of Sheriff Poppell. The stories in the book about white slavery are true...a friend of my parents lived in a home on the marsh near The Ridge, and woke one morning to find a nude girl running through the marsh behind his house. She had escaped the brothel in which she had been locked up, but had no clothes...so she just left without. Yes, that county has quite a history...there has been a lot of development lately, but I understand that a lot of people there are wanting to get out because the status quo of county government hasn't changed much.
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Old 01-07-2009, 04:40 PM
 
744 posts, read 2,187,484 times
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I have lived in Darien( McIntosh County ). It is an absolutely beautiful coastal town and a great place to visit.
This is just one of the many stories that could be written about Darien. The town is a writers dream for stories -as is most of the coastal south.
I lived there when the book came out. It was my first time actually knowing
ortrayed in a book and seeing the effect it had on them once it was released.
It was a very hard thing to watch as it brought back some very painful memories for them.
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Old 01-11-2009, 11:12 AM
 
Location: St Simons Island, GA
23,120 posts, read 36,477,500 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LovinDecatur View Post
Oh, yeah, that was definitely McIntosh in that era...it was the little fiefdom of Sheriff Poppell. The stories in the book about white slavery are true...a friend of my parents lived in a home on the marsh near The Ridge, and woke one morning to find a nude girl running through the marsh behind his house. She had escaped the brothel in which she had been locked up, but had no clothes...so she just left without. Yes, that county has quite a history...there has been a lot of development lately, but I understand that a lot of people there are wanting to get out because the status quo of county government hasn't changed much.
BTW, I had lunch with a friend who lives in Darien (I agree that it is a lovely town) and heard another story about a resident (a recent transplant from NJ) that at one time had decided to run for county sheriff in order to 'clean up' the dirty government. He was kidnapped, chloroformed and awoke to find himself buried neck deep in the muck by the Sapelo (a tidal) River. As the tide started coming in, and his head began to submerge in the water, he was asked by his kidnappers if he still wanted to run for sheriff. He decided at that moment to withdraw from consideration.
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Old 01-11-2009, 06:14 PM
 
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Has Darien been cleaned up? I heard about some drug-smuggling activities in the inland waters during the Seventies.
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Old 01-12-2009, 07:55 AM
 
Location: St Simons Island, GA
23,120 posts, read 36,477,500 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kturnerga View Post
Has Darien been cleaned up? I heard about some drug-smuggling activities in the inland waters during the Seventies.
Somewhat...I think that still goes on, but with the influx of new residents around the waterways, it becomes a bit more difficult to do business in a covert manner.
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Old 01-12-2009, 08:36 AM
 
Location: Metro Atlanta & Savannah, GA - Corpus Christi, TX
4,512 posts, read 7,576,624 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LovinDecatur View Post
BTW, I had lunch with a friend who lives in Darien (I agree that it is a lovely town) and heard another story about a resident (a recent transplant from NJ) that at one time had decided to run for county sheriff in order to 'clean up' the dirty government. He was kidnapped, chloroformed and awoke to find himself buried neck deep in the muck by the Sapelo (a tidal) River. As the tide started coming in, and his head began to submerge in the water, he was asked by his kidnappers if he still wanted to run for sheriff. He decided at that moment to withdraw from consideration.
Wow. I hope that isn't true.... is it???
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Old 01-12-2009, 09:53 AM
 
Location: St Simons Island, GA
23,120 posts, read 36,477,500 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WanderingImport View Post
Wow. I hope that isn't true.... is it???
This was told to me by a good friend that is a native of Darien. He's not prone to exaggeration, but you can take it for it's worth.
McIntosh has generated many stories like this over the years.
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Old 02-14-2017, 09:55 AM
 
37 posts, read 38,824 times
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Been here since 99 partime and full time since 2006. Praying for Sheetrock is an fairly accurate account of life in this County during that time. It's still a poor county, with no jobs, no industry, no amenities, nor healthcare. It's a relatively safe County for a variety of reasons, but not your suburbia get away if you want amenities 10 minutes away. Even though it's right off of I-95 it's still fairly accurate to say it's 25 minutes from anywhere. It's a nice time warp if that's what you're looking for, but if you're looking to change it you may bite off more than you can chew.
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Old 02-14-2017, 10:24 AM
 
Location: St Simons Island, GA
23,120 posts, read 36,477,500 times
Reputation: 15483
Quote:
Originally Posted by perryrip View Post
Been here since 99 partime and full time since 2006. Praying for Sheetrock is an fairly accurate account of life in this County during that time. It's still a poor county, with no jobs, no industry, no amenities, nor healthcare. It's a relatively safe County for a variety of reasons, but not your suburbia get away if you want amenities 10 minutes away. Even though it's right off of I-95 it's still fairly accurate to say it's 25 minutes from anywhere. It's a nice time warp if that's what you're looking for, but if you're looking to change it you may bite off more than you can chew.
Yes, I love Darien and the folks in it, but you simply have to approach them on their terms.
Having said that, changes are happening, but in a rather subversive and covert manner.
Had lunch with a friend in Darien a while back. Openly gay (and I mean openly), he retired there after a decades-long career in NYC. Talk about a lifestyle change; after 6 months, his longtime partner ran for the hills after six months. Still, my friend stuck it out there, and years later can point out five gay households within line of sight of his own. He's even gotten a couple of rather colorful Letters to the Editor published in the Darien News without getting his house torched.
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