Dr. Nic Butler, historian at the Charleston County Public Library, explores the less familiar corners of local history with stories designed to educate, entertain, and inspire audiences to reflect on the enduring presence of the past in the Lowcountry of South Carolina.
Episode 200: The Forgotten Dead: Charleston's Public Cemeteries, 1672–1794
The historic landscape of urban Charleston contains several large unmarked public cemeteries that are filled with the remains of thousands of nameless bodies interred by local government. Those buried between 1672 and 1794 are contained within a well-settled neighborhood on the city’s west side, where the forgotten graves were built over and ignored by successive generations.
Episode 199: The Telegraph: Charleston’s First Information Superhighway
Although the telegraph is functionally irrelevant in the 21st century, its legacy is more important to our modern lifestyles than we realize. The advent of the telegraph in the 1840s sparked a bold new era of telecommunication that connected South Carolina to an international conversation and brough Charleston “one line” in the winter of 1848.
Episode 198: Captain Thomas Hayward’s Poetic Description of 1769 Charles Town
The identity of the author of a well-known Charleston poem from 1769 is obscure, but clues imbedded in the manuscript suggest a candidate whose unfamiliar name recalls a distant era of local maritime history, and whose biography provides a colorful backdrop for the creation of a famously bold description of the colonial capital.
Episode 197: Granville Bastion and the Unfinished Fort of 1697
Granville Bastion, a brick structure mounting a dozen cannon, stood at the south end of East Bay Street from its creation in 1697 until its partial demolition in the 1780s. A new investigation of its genesis reveals that South Carolina’s oldest English fortification was originally conceived as one corner of a four-bastioned structure that was never completed.
Episode 196: Charleston County’s Mobile Library Service, 1931–2021
Since the first bookmobiles hit the road in Charleston County in 1931, generations of drivers have carried books to remote corners of the county to foster a love of learning outside of traditional libraries. As CCPL’s thirteenth “mobile library” prepares to continue this ninety-year-old tradition, let’s review a brief history of the county’s books (and more) on wheels.
Episode 195: The Bowling Green: Recreational Space in Colonial Charleston
Dedicated recreational space was not part of the vocabulary of urban planning in colonial South Carolina, so early Charlestonians were obliged to borrow private land for use as public greens. The earliest evidence of a shared space for sport and leisure in our community points to a forgotten suburban site once known as the Bowling Green.
My favorite Podcast
My favorite Podcast, and I listen to a lot of podcasts!
Easy Listening, Great Content, Fantastic Host
Love this podcast! I recently discovered this podcast and now am excitedly binging my way through the series. Can’t wait for more episodes!
Charleston Time Machine
Great podcast, just found out about this podcast through the Historic Charleston Foundation. I’m hooked, I work in a wood shop and listen to a lot of podcasts, this is my new go to. I have been binge listening to this for days. Nic is a knowledgeable historian who tells Charleston history with fantastic enthusiasm.