Books

Art Work of Charleston: Published in Twelve Parts

A twelve-part, mostly pictorial publication about Charleston and the vicinity.  Distributed throughout the parts is an essay describing Charleston’s history and development.  The photographs feature buildings, residences, churches, street views, river views, historic gardens, cemeteries, railroad structures, phosphate mining activity, and wharves.  Published in 1893 by W. H. Parish (Chicago, Illinois). 

 

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An Architectural Guide to Charleston, South Carolina

An Architectural Guide to Charleston includes the history and architectural description of many prominent Charleston buildings, arranged by period (Colonial, post-Revolutionary, Antebellum, and post-Civil War). Written by noted architects Albert Simons and W.H. Johnson Thomas, the manuscript was compiled by Historic Charleston Foundation to be presented to the members of the Society of Architectural Historians at its meeting in Charleston in 1971.

 

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Charles Fraser Sketchbook, 1793-1796

Charles Fraser Sketchbook, 1793-1796

Charles Fraser (1782-1860) was a renowned Charleston artist and attorney recognized for his miniatures and landscape paintings. Highlights of this sketchbook include some of Charles Fraser's earliest Lowcountry landscape scenes, and several theatrical views, some of which may be the work of his brother, Alexander.

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The Thomas Haythe Rare Book Collection

Printed during the 15th and 16th centuries, this collection of rare books includes works from medieval France with a particular focus on the theme of chivalry. Written primarily in French and Latin, the texts describe stories of love, politics, humor, religion and many other aspects of medieval life. Additional titles in this collection will be digitized over time, and include: Romant de la Rose (1528), Horae Beatae Mariae Virginis (Use of Paris) (ca. 1460-1470), and Les Gestes de Chevalier Bayard (1525).

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The Storm Swept Coast of South Carolina

The Storm Swept Coast of South Carolina

The Storm Swept Coast of South Carolina describes damage and recovery efforts in Beaufort, South Carolina, and the surrounding coastal area after the hurricane of August 27, 1893. Accounts from hurricane survivors describe the destruction of homes, crops, boats, wharves, bridges, railroads, and other infrastructure in the area. The author, Mrs. R. C. Mather, recounts the recovery efforts she and others undertook throughout the following year. Mather, who created The Mather School in 1867 to educate the daughters of liberated slaves, continued her work after the hurricane by providing clothing, blankets, tools, seeds, and other provisions to the needy. Interspersed throughout the 14 chapters of the book are poems and biblical passages, reflecting the author's deep religious faith.

For images of Beaufort after the 1893 hurricane, please see the companion collection, the Beaufort Hurricane of 1893 Photograph Collection.

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Examples of Colonial Architecture in Charleston, S.C., and Savannah, Ga.

Examples of Colonial Architecture in Charleston, S.C., and Savannah, Ga.

The folio, Examples of Colonial Architecture in Charleston, S.C. and Savannah, Ga., features photographic plates of some of the most important houses and buildings in Charleston and Savannah. Photographs include exterior views of the buildings, gates, and entrances, as well as interior views of fireplaces, mantels, doors, rooms, and ceilings. Compiled and photographed by Edward A. Crane and E.E. Soderholtz. Published in 1895 by the Boston Architectural Club (Boston, Mass. (Note: Historic Charleston Foundation’s copy is missing Plates 45-50, which feature Savannah architecture.)

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Newton Plantation Collection

This collection details the inner workings of Newton Plantation in the 1800s and contains several account and transaction ledgers. Specifically, this collection includes several day books (including the Newton Day Book or the Newton Plantation Day Book) originating between 1854-1872. These books provide records of monetary transactions on the plantation, including accounts payable and accounts receivable.  This collection also includes the Newton Slave List, 1828, which records the names of slaves and their respective occupations on the plantation during that year. Additionally, the collection includes the Newton Plantation Cash Books from 1869-1873, a Stock Keepers and Watchmen book from 1862, and an 1849 Sugar Book, which contains records of sugar, rum, and molasses production on the plantation.

Newton Plantation is located in the parish of Christ Church in southern Barbados, and was first established by Samuel Newton in the 1660s. From the seventeenth to the eighteenth centuries, Newton was a major sugar plantation worked by enslaved people. In addition to the significant documentary record featured in this digital collection, this plantation was also the site of the Newton Burial Ground for enslaved people. Drs. Jerome Handler and Frederick Lange investigated and excavated this site in the 1970s, and their research formed the basis for Plantation Slavery in Barbados, a book published by Harvard University Press in 1978. These scholars estimate that roughly one thousand enslaved people died on Newton Plantation between 1670 and 1833, and they believed that an estimated 570 individuals are interred at the Newton Burial Ground. As part of its mandate, the Barbados Museum and Historical Society (BMHS) acquired the land where the Newton Burial Ground is located in the 1990s, and the museum is committed to the site’s protection and preservation for the people of Barbados and the region.

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The James Poyas Daybook

The James Poyas Daybook

This collection contains images from the daybook of James Poyas, a Charleston merchant. Entries begin in February 1760 and end in April of 1765. James Poyas was born in 1736 to Jean Louis (anglicized to John Lewis) Poyas and Marie Jourdan. He married Elizabeth Portall in 1755, and they had one child, a daughter, Elizabeth. In 1767, James moved his family to London. They never returned to America to live. His daughter married an Englishman, Joseph Higginson; and James died in Bath in 1799. Beyond these few facts, very little is known about James and his family. Research is, of course, on-going. The daybook itself is one of a set. The South Carolina Historical Society holds the companion book, which covers from 1764-1766, so there is some overlap. The description of the entries list the names and, in the parentheses behind them, their account numbers. This will serve as a differentiation between people (fathers and sons, cousins, etc.) with the same or similar names. Due to slight variations in spelling (for which we have attempted a reconciliation), it will also serve as a confirmation that one is in fact looking at the same person throughout the ledger. Some of the miscellaneous account numbers, not associated with people, are: account 3 -- the store itself; account 31 -- cash; account 87 -- Indico [Indigo?] and account 81 -- Bonds and Notes. Occassionally there are entries with no account numbers next to them. These seem to be have been entered into another ledger (petty cash?) but no account number has been listed in our corresponding description, even if that person had (or would have) an account.

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Charleston in 1883

Charleston in 1883

In 1883, Arthur Mazyck published the book, "Charleston South Carolina in 1883 : with heliotypes of the principle objects of interest in and around the city and historical and descriptive notices," which contained images of Charleston buildings and sights. The images are unique, because only three years later, Charleston was devastated by a major earthquake, which damaged or destroyed many of Charleston's buildings. In 1983, architectural historian and College of Charleston faculty member Gene Waddell updated Mazyck's work to produce the book, "Charleston in 1883". This digital collection contains scans from both editions.

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Craft and Crum Families, 1780-2007

Craft and Crum Families, 1780-2007

The collection of artifacts pertaining tot he Craft and Crum families of the Lowcountry includes a myriad of materials; photo albums, letters, account books, and land deeds. The Craft Family Photo Album includes images of Craft family members, famous abolitionists, and other family friends, many of international historical significance. Also included in the collection are legal documents pertaining to the family land, Woodville Plantation.

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