In the spirit of “do for self,” Sapelo Square intervenes in the marginalization and erasure of Black Muslims in the public square by building an online forum that places Black Muslims at the center. Our mission is to celebrate and analyze the experiences of Black Muslims in the United States to create new understandings of who they are, what they have done, and why that matters.
Sapelo Square is committed to a nonsectarian approach to Islam and an inclusive vision of what it means to be Black in the United States. Sapelo Square seeks to provide informed and thought provoking content that leads to innovative and transformative action. Sapelo Square is a gathering space that builds on the long tradition of Islam in Black America and reflects the vitality of Black Muslim Life. Sapelo Square aims to be the destination for all things Black and Muslim in the United States.
We take the name “Sapelo” from one of the first communities of African Muslims in the United States founded in the early 1800s. On Sapelo Island, off the coast of Georgia, enslaved African Muslims struggled to hold onto their Islamic roots amidst the dehumanizing institution of slavery. Like the celebrated Congo Square of New Orleans, we take the name “square” in reference to the town square as a community space and a cultural hub for African-descended people.