The Yamacraw Restoration Project announced the opening of Savannah’s newest square, Yamacraw Square.
On Sunday, December 4, the City of Savannah invited the community to come celebrate as they unveiled of Yamacraw Square’s new sign and art restoration. Savannah Mayor, City Council members, City staff and many others gathered in Yamacraw Square just west of downtown on Bay Street to celebrate. The formerly known Yamacraw Art Park underwent a public process to assess the community’s desire for the space’s new name. City Council chose and voted on Yamacraw Square in March. See the video of the unveiling here.
After a period of decline, the former Yamacraw Art Park has once again risen to its original glory. Through passionate support from community members and full restoration efforts, it received “Square” status. Along with that designation, the hope is that it remains for many generations to come.
On a commission, local sculptor and designer Jerome B. Meadows designed, created, and installed artwork in the park.
He restored the existing public art in the now publicly recognized historic square. Originally from New York City, Meadows has lived in Savannah since 1997. He works and resides in an historic Ice House in the city.
The city of Savannah, Province of Georgia, was laid out in 1733, in what was colonial America, around four open squares.
Known as a “ward,” the layout of a square and eight surrounding blocks. The original plan (now known as the Oglethorpe Plan) laid out a part of a larger regional plan that included gardens, farms, and “out-lying villages.” The late 18th and 19th centuries saw the addition of more squares and by 1851 with a total of 24 squares in the city. In the 20th century, three of the squares fell into disrepair or altered beyond recognition, leaving 21. In 2010, one of the three “lost” squares, Ellis, returned to statu, bringing the total to 22.
Yamacraw Square is now the 23rd square in the City of Savannah. Like Savannah’s other squares, Yamacraw bursts with history. It is located on West Bay Street, directly across from the U.S. Post Office, and will function in the same capacity as the other historic squares in Savannah.
Sources: https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=936884721054884, https://savannahga.gov/CivicAlerts.aspx?AID=2697, http://meadowlarkstudio.blogspot.com/p/about.html, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Squares_of_Savannah,_Georgia.