Tag Archives: Church

Two Old Charleston Churches

The other day was the first time I was able to walk behind these two landmarks. They share a back iron gate that is always locked. This day it was open.

St. Johns Lutheran 1734

The front of the building is magnificent too. Like much of Charleston everything is close quarters and hard to photograph. It’s an old town. The back graveyard here gave me a whole new perspective.

St. Johns Lutheran, Charleston
St. Johns Lutheran, Charleston
St. Johns Lutheran, Charleston
St. Johns Lutheran, Charleston

Unitarian Church in Charleston 1772

Behind this church it is impossible to photograph. It’s a jungle, by design. Their graveyard is old trees, thick bushes, and benches to rest on…all off an old alley.

Unitarian Church, Charleston
Unitarian Church, Charleston
Unitarian Church, Charleston
Unitarian Church, Charleston

Charleston has a large number of churches sitting side by side. Shared graveyards is also common.

With the except of one, the church graveyards have been full for centuries. The old Magnolia Cemetery we shoot came to be as there was no other burial places except at the plantations on the edge of town. In the 1850’s a yellow fever pandemic hit Charleston and the idea of cemeteries, not church yards started. I would call this useless trivia, but that’s the kind of ‘stuff’ floating around my head.

Wildflowers, 1772 Grave Yard

Down an alley on the busiest street in Charleston is the church yard for the Unitarian Church in Charleston. This was first a meeting house for the Society of Dissenters built in 1772.

The old grave yard is said to have been made for the ‘the living’ and is a heavily overgrown garden with benches. A quiet place in the middle of Charleston to this day.

Wildflowers, 1772 Grave Yard
Wildflowers, 1772 Grave Yard

It’s a favorite place for us to include in a walk. and of course photograph. This morning I looked at the flowers blooming around the old headstones for a few passing shots.

Wildflowers, 1772 Grave Yard
Wildflowers, 1772 Grave Yard
Wildflowers, 1772 Grave Yard
Wildflowers, 1772 Grave Yard
Wildflowers, 1772 Grave Yard
Wildflowers, 1772 Grave Yard

The Unitarian Church, Charleston, South Carolina.

Mother Emanuel

On my way to shoot another of the old homes I turned a corner and of course spotted a big beautiful church. Camera up, and shooting.

However then I recognized the church.

Mother Emanuel is the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church. Founded in 1817, Emanuel AME is the oldest African Methodist Episcopal church in the Southern United States. This, the first independent black denomination in the United States, was founded in 1816.

In June 1822, Denmark Vesey of Charleston, one of the church’s founders, was implicated in an alleged slave revolt plot. Vesey and five other organizers were rapidly convicted in a show trial, and executed on July 2 after a secret trial.

Dr. Martin Luther King spoke here to support black voter registration in 1962. Earlier in 1909 Booker T. Washington spoke here bringing both white and black national politicians together.

Finally, June 17, 2015 historic of another kind came to Mother Emanuel. During an evening bible study a young man, Dylan Roof joined the group. Nine people were shot and killed by Roof after he sat with them. A manifesto of hate and white supremacy was found on his web site later.

Mother Emanuel
Mother Emanuel

Just to add a bit more to this story…

Mother Emanuel
Mother Emanuel

We looked up and found a Red-tailed Hawk looking down over Charleston.

There’s always a critter around when you need one.

For additional information click here… Mother Emanuel

Old St. Philips Anglican Church

Walking by the other day I noticed the church was open midday. Most are open for tourist visits but it’s not really the season now.

It is the season to be decorating so there was a lot going on, most in the places I wanted to shoot.

Old St. Philips Anglican Church
Old St. Philips Anglican Church

This building is from 1835, the first of 1723 burned… they all do at that age.

The spire is the tallest in Charleston, a city of hundreds this one stands out as a landmark. Like most churches in town the history runs deep through wars and the founding of the US.

Ann Bull Heyward – 1851

Found in the Bull family cemetery, Anglican chapel, St. Helena barrier island.

Ann Bull Heyward - 1851
Ann Bull Heyward – 1851

Both the Bull and Heyward families are found throughout Charleston and South Carolina history. In Charleston several of the larger manor houses were owned by family members. They were plantation owners here until the union army came up through Georgia.

Many barrier islands were abandoned ahead of the army’s arrival.

You never know what you may find out here.

Anglican Chapel, Black And White

Any time we pass an old Chapel of Ease we stop and take a few shots. I try to finish the photographs a little different. I even succeed once in a while.

Build in 1740, tabby construction, by local planters.

Anglican Chapel, Black And White
Anglican Chapel, Black And White
Anglican Chapel, Black And White
Anglican Chapel, Black And White
Anglican Chapel, Black And White
Anglican Chapel, Black And White