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"A" is for African Theological Archministry, Inc.

South Carolina From A to Z
SC Public Radio

"A" is for African Theological Archministry, Inc. [Oyotunji Village]. In 1973 a group of African Americans established an independent Yoruba kingdom at Sheldon, fourteen miles from Beaufort. The Kingdom of Oyotunji Village is headed by Oba [or King] Efuntola Oseijeman Adelabu Adefunmi I. Oyotunji means “Oya again awakes” or “Oya rises again.” Oya was an ancient city-state kingdom in Yorubaland located in present day Nigeria, Togo, Benin, and Ghana. The village is patterned after the ancient Yoruba kingdoms of Nigeria in governance and religious practices.  The archministry's mission is to remove negative stereotypes of Africana and African American culture by providing a living laboratory of African traditions and by disseminating historical and cultural information. In 1980, the state of South Carolina granted the directors of the village a charter as the African Theological Archministry, Inc.

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Dr. Walter Edgar has two programs on South Carolina Public Radio: Walter Edgar's Journal, and South Carolina from A to Z. Dr. Edgar received his B.A. degree from Davidson College in 1965 and his Ph.D. from the University of South Carolina in 1969. After two years in the army (including a tour of duty in Vietnam), he returned to USC as a post-doctoral fellow of the National Archives, assigned to the Papers of Henry Laurens.