Woman shares 'enlightening' lesson on the Hamptons' historic Black community: 'A glorious place to be'

·2 min read

A woman on TikTok shared the powerful and unique story behind the Hamptons’ historic Black community.

TikToker Brooke DeVard shared this informational video on the history behind Sag Harbor’s historically Black communities during a vacation to the Hamptons.

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In the TikTok, DeVard explains that the Hamptons’ historic Black community was established in the late 1940s within the area’s Sag Harbor Hills, Azurest, and Ninevah subdivisions (aka SANS). As the Hamptons is primarily a vacationing community, the local Black community wanted to “create a space for themselves” and self-financed their own beach homes within SANS.

“It was a place of rest and relaxation during Jim Crow segregation,” DeVard said. “There weren’t many places [that] Black people could go to enjoy the beach.”

SANS was founded by a Brooklyn school teacher, Maude Terry, and her sister, Amaza Lee Meredith. According to Preservation Long Island, Terry envisioned “a new private summer community designed for Black families.” When she was vacationing in the Hamptons, she observed 20 acres of undeveloped land near her beach cottage, which later become the Azurest division. The sisters developed the Hamptons’ Black community over time through word of mouth, with Terry playing “a key role by finding prospective buyers for the newly created Azurest lots.”

To fight the setbacks of discriminatory city planning practices, Terry and Meredith created the Azurest Syndicate. The Azurest Syndicate brokered sales for the SANS area and helped fund mortgages and construction for new residents. Terry and Meredith’s work in the Azurest Syndicate made it possible for the Black community and other people of color to vacation comfortably while segregation was in effect.

Today, the Hamptons’ historic Black community continues to thrive; a tight-knit Black community still exists within the SANS area, all thanks to the generations of Black families who kept the neighborhood alive throughout the years.

“The SANS today remains pretty much intact,” DeVard said. “There are still tons of modest, midcentury homes and, more importantly, the generations of people who have made SANS the place that it is.”

The camera then shows DeVard and her child playing together in the private beach area. For DeVard, it is a fulfilling experience to see her child having fun on the beaches she visited as she was growing up.

Viewers appreciated DeVard’s TikTok history lesson.

“This is so cool!! Love the history,” a TikToker commented.

“So enlightening and also what a beautiful beach,” another wrote.

“I’ve been to the beach next to it. What a glorious place to be,” someone chimed in.

“My dream is to have a home there,” one person said.

The post Woman shares the unique story behind the Hamptons’ historic Black community appeared first on In The Know.

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