19 families purchase almost 100 acres of land in Georgia

They created the Freedom Georgia initiative to spearhead the purchase

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In August, Real Estate agent Ashley Scott and her friend, investor and entrepreneur Renee Walters, along with 17 other families, purchased nearly 97 acres of land that sits just East of Macon in rural Wilkinson County, Georgia.

“I’m hoping that it will be a thriving safe haven for people of color, for Black families in particular,” Scott said.

Land purchased by the Freedom Georgia Initiative in Wilkinson County, Georiga (via CNN)

According to CNN, Scott and Walters didn’t initially plan to buy multiple acres of land, but they were certain that they wanted to launch an initiative that would create a new city founded by Black families.

“Being able to create a community that is thriving, that is safe, that has agriculture and commercial businesses that are supporting one another and that have dollars circulating in our community, that is our vision.”

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After the murders of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor at the hands of police, and Ahmaud Arbery who was shot to death while jogging outside Brunswick, Georgia, the women were motivated to search for a new community that they could start themselves.

“We both have Black husbands. We both have Black sons. And I was starting to get overwhelmed and have a sense of anxiety when my husband would leave the house to go to work,” said Walters. “So it was like, okay, what can we do? And once I saw the post of Toomsboro going viral, about a town being on sale, I was like, ‘Oh, this is perfect.'”

When it turned out that the town of Toomsboro itself wasn’t actually for sale, Scott put her real estate skills to use and looked for land in the area. She found multiple acres for sale outside of Toomsboro in unincorporated Wilkinson County.

After reaching out to family and friends, who all pitched in and joined their efforts, they created the Freedom Georgia initiative to spearhead the purchase. They hope to incorporate the land into a new all-Black city called Freedom, Georgia.

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By the end of their development plan, they hope to put Freedom, Georgia on the map as a fully operational, self-sufficient city.

“To be able to pass this land down to my children and to the children that are represented by each of our 19 families, as a piece of legacy. We’re hoping to create legacy,” Scott said.

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