Mr. Evans’s campaign for these markers has included lots of bureaucratic prodding, including some rather terse emails to the Georgia Historical Society. “I don’t mind a ‘no’ answer but would like an answer,” Mr. Evans wrote in one, and in another: “I’m beginning to think that you have no interest …” Frustrated by the society’s lack of timely response, Mr. Evans offered to use his own funds for three new markers.
Some stories simply must be told. As the escaped slave William Craft wrote in his 1860s narrative, "Running a Thousand Miles for Freedom": “I have often seen slaves tortured in every conceivable manner. I have seen them hunted down and torn by bloodhounds. I have seen them shamefully beaten and branded with hot irons. I have seen them hunted and even burned alive at the stake, frequently for offenses that would be applauded if committed by white persons for similar purposes.”
Sharing these stories – whether through one of Mr. Evans’s historical markers or paintings, or through Johnnie Brown’s tour – gives voice to old spirits that still haunt Savannah’s storied streets and squares.