Monday, December 13, 2021

Vintage Charleston

Picture this: March 14, 1953, Charleston, South Carolina. Need some assistance? How about this photo showing St. Philips Church at 142 Church Street in Charleston, South Carolina? This National Historic Landmark was built in 1836. Zooming in we see a tourist being taken around town in a horse-drawn carriage.

The driver has his faithful dog sitting next to him.

A contemporary photo I shot of the church during my November 2016 visit:

From the same day in 1953, our time traveling photographer captured The Dock Street Theatre:

The historic theatre began life as the Planter’s Hotel in 1809, and was converted into a lavish theatre during the Depression in 1937.

Another vintage shot of the theatre, from June 1966:

Can’t quite read it; I hate when that happens!

My November 2016 shot of the theatre:

Cruising back to April 1960, here’s one of St. Michael’s Episcopal Church, at the corner of Meeting and Broad. It is Charleston’s oldest surviving religious structure, built in the 1750s:

The hotel was demolished in 1963. Their post card stated: “Opposite City Hall Park. Rates Reasonable. Homelike atmosphere.”

My November 2016 view of the church:

Happy Monday! See more Charleston photos at my main website.


Fifthrider said...

That Timrod looks familiar from a neon post, ir maybe it's just the shape of a "T" that makes it look so familiar. It's amazing to see real life buildings that appeared to have the same scaling as a Main Street Building, meaning 5/5 first floor, 4/5 second floor, 3/5 third floor. I realize that's not the case on the inside, but from the outside it kind of looks like that on the facade. Also, I think that sign says "The Jellyfish Bugles" at "Dock St Theatre". It's just a guess.

Chuck said...

I think that’s probably “The Footlight Players” at the Dock Street Theatre, but the Jellyfish Bugles did open for them occasionally. :-)

I had the pleasure of living in North Charleston for three years in the latter half of the ‘90s, and these pictures bring back some fond memories. I surprised my wife with a birthday dinner downtown at Poogan’s Porch followed by a performance of The Secret Garden, her favorite Francis Hodgson Burnett novel (she’s also fond of the Shirley Temple version), at the Dock Street Theatre.

We went to church downtown with a WW II veteran who was a direct descendant of Charles Pinckney, one of the principal authors and a signer of the Constitution. He had actually grown up visiting his grandfather at home at what is now the Charles Pinckney National Historic Site. Anyway, he grew up attending St Philip’s, which was the church that the cream of Charleston society belonged to. After he came back from the war, he moved down the street to Trinity Methodist (then closer to the water but since relocated to a newer building from the 1850s farther up Meeting Street) because, as he told me, “they were too stuck up for even my family.”

Thanks again, Dave!

Fifthrider said...

That's an awesome story Chuck. Thank you, and "Footlight Players" makes more sense. Thank you as well.

Daveland said...

Fifthrider - I think you need to create a group of actors called The Jellyfish Bugles. I'd pay to see them, and I'm sure others (including Chuck) would as well.

Chuck - Thank you SOOOOO much for sharing your Charleston stories!