Longtime Charleston preservationist, Elizabeth Jenkins “Liz” Young, was born April 7, 1919 on Edisto Island. In this interview she conveys her love for Charleston and emphasizes the importance of its preservation, gives a brief lesson on the Gullah dialect, and discusses St. Michaels Church. Young also talks about Federal Memorial Day versus Confederate Memorial Day, a holiday designated to memorialize the soldiers lost in the Civil War, which she calls the “War Of Northern Aggression.” Audio with transcript and tape log.
Dorothy Haskell Porcher Legge was a pioneer of historic preservation in Charleston. In this interview, Legge discusses her early efforts to restore homes on the peninsula and describes the restoration of her family’s residence at number 99 – 101 East Bay Street beginning in 1931. Legge worked privately and effectively to inspire the revitalization of this block of deteriorated eighteenth-century mercantile structures on East Bay Street which eventually came to be known as “Rainbow Row.” In the interview Legge also discusses growing up on Mulberry (on the Cooper River) and Bonny Hill (on the Combahee River) rice plantations and family history including the life of her mother’s grandfather, Rev. John Bachman. Audio with transcript and tape log.
Riley discusses his efforts at revitalizing downtown through the development of the Charleston Place hotel and Waterfront Park. He faced strong opposition to Charleston Place (originally Charleston Center) from preservationists and local merchants, including Maier Hyman. One opponent nearly landed a blow at the conclusion of a city council meeting. Riley also describes the negotiations that took place to acquire properties between Meeting and King Streets and to relocate tenants, including the Washington Light Infantry. The city received critical financial support for King St. revitalization from the US Economic Development Association and the Department of Housing and Urban Development.