Elderly Brothers Continue Black-Owned Land Legacy of Feeding Community Through Historic Steele Farm Property


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ByAtlanta Black Star

Known for its popular collard greens, the 31-acre Promised Land Farm in Port Wentworth, Georgia, is steeped in history. Local lore says at the end of the Civil War, the land was given to the enslaved Roderick Steele through the “40 acres and a mule” promise, made by Union General William T. Sherman through the general’s Special Field Order No. 15, although this is unconfirmed by Atlanta Black Star…

Willie Johnson, co-owner of Promised Land Farm in Port Wentworth, Georgia. (Photo: Ashley Ford/Atlanta Black Star)

Willie Johnson and his brother began developing their green thumbs after Robert Johnson retired from the military in 1989. In 1998, they purchased what’s now known as the Promised Land Farm.

“One thing that’s special about it is, you know, we are Black and our families are Black, and we enjoy keeping it like that,” Willie Johnson said of the farm’s ownership.

They’ve continued the farm’s Black-owned legacy through the rewarding task of nurturing the land.

Willie Johnson says he enjoys being able to plant a crop and watching it grow to feed his community. “People are going to have to eat, and to have a farm in the city of Port Wentworth where people can come out and buy fresh stuff, that’s what I appreciate,” he said….


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