This small church, an Anglican chapel, is remote and the last standing piece of history in a town that hasn’t existed for several hundred years.
note; the chapel and cemetery are behind several brick walls as old as the chapel itself. Now it is monitored by CCTV, rimmed with barbed wire, all at the expense of the same family that helped build and maintain this for 300 years. The cemetery was again vandalized a day after these images were taken. One could point to the politics of our time, but this is an old very rural church. Nothing was gained by it, the few that visit here are photographers / historians. Troubling times.
In 1707 the town of Childsbury was organized here, the chapel and an Inn several years later. The Cooper River, which runs to Charleston, was the source of all transportation and this ‘T’ was as far as a small cargo boat could navigate.
The Rice Hope, Comingtee, Bonneau, and Strawberry Bluff plantations were the early settlers here. They were small at this time, not what the word plantation evokes.
The town did not survive due to a ferry, at Bonneau plantation, that made it faster for commerce than the river boats.
Click any image below to view a monochrome series of photographs.
The chapel survived the Civil War. Towns and nearby plantations were burned as General Sherman moved the Union Army north towards Charleston.
As the Union Army advanced Keating Ball of the Commingtee plantation removed all the French silver plates and chalices to a secret spot for safety. The silver was donated to the chapel by the Charleston Huguenot families from the towns French Quarter.
The silver was saved from the invading army, but hidden in a very private location…that Keating Ball never could find again.
For years treasure hunters combed the old ruins in these woods, finally in 1947 a family that managed what was left of Commingtee pulled up a ‘bag’ from an old barn floor. The silver is now in the Charleston Museum, except on the rare occasion a service is held in the chapel.
I was to have an opportunity to photograph inside the chapel, the Covid-19 virus lock down cancelled it. With luck it will be rescheduled some time.
I had planned to include work from the plantation mentioned here. This would have become much too large.
If you search on the tag ‘historical’ on this site multiple articles in this area will be offered.