South Carolina Historical Society Recently Processed Manuscripts

Article excerpt

The following manuscript collections are now available for research by Historical Society patrons. The society welcomes gifts of manuscript collections and publications relating to South Carolina. Such gifts can be designated charitable contributions and are eligible for income-tax deductions.

Descriptions of all of the society's manuscripts can be viewed at

0325.00 Christ Church Parish records


1.75 linear ft.

One of the ten ecclesiastical subdivisions created in South Carolina by the Church Act of 1706, Christ Church Parish laid the foundation for its church, located on the Wando peninsula in modern-day Mount Pleasant, in 1707.

This collection contains records and documents from Christ Church Parish dating from 1694 to 1959. Materials include vestry correspondence, financial records, insurance records, legal records, property records, vestry minutes, and registers. Correspondence (1765-1957) includes letters from Rev. Albert A. Muller, William Hort, James Gregorie, Thomas Barksdale, Arnold Bonneau, James Hibben, and others. Financial records (1763-1959) include account books, poor-tax records, subscription lists, receipts, and invoices. Legal records (1811-1856) concern equity suits between the vestry and other parties. Property records consist of a lease agreement from 1885 and items pertaining to repair work done on the church between 1810 and 1834. The vestry minutes (1711-1957) consist of manuscript volumes and twentieth-century transcriptions. Registers (1694-1945) contain records of baptisms, marriages, and burials performed at the church. The vestry minutes and registers were transcribed in the early twentieth century by Anne King Gregorie, in preparation for her published history of Christ Church Parish.

Other items in the collection include secretary books (1928-1950) and minutes (1919-1928) from the Women's Auxiliary of Christ Church and annual lists (1826-1842) of the members of the Parish Society Auxiliary, which was affiliated with the Protestant Episcopal Society for the Advancement of Christianity in South Carolina. Also included are some records and correspondence from St. Andrew's Chapel, which functioned informally as a chapel of ease for Christ Church until it separated in 1954.

Some records in this collection are in fragile condition. Please use photocopies where available. Early records are available on microfilm (54 / 24-6).

0326.00 St. Stephen's Church records


0.75 linear ft.

The Society for the Relief of the Widows and Orphans of the Protestant St. Stephen's Church in Charleston was established in 1822 under the patronage of the Charleston Female Domestic Missionary Society and is said to have been the first free Episcopal church in the United States. The original church on Guignard Street was consecrated in March 1824, but after that building was destroyed by fire in 1835, the church moved to its present location on Anson Street. Around 1854 there were 120 regular white communicants and nine African American communicants. In 1880 St. Stephen's closed, and its congregation united with that of St. Luke's Episcopal Church, Charleston. St. Stephen's briefly reopened in 1892-1893, and in 1911 it opened as a mission church with a parochial school. In 1923 St. Stephen's was again reactivated when the African American congregation of Mount Moriah Union Methodist Church transferred to this church.

Records include one folder of loose materials and six volumes: an address book of members (1855); vestry minutes (1866-1880); a register of baptisms (1833-1865); a register of marriages (1822-1860); a register of burials (1822-1865); and a register of marriages, baptisms, confirmations, and burials (1867-1880). The register of baptisms includes a note (pp. 49-51) concerning the fate of the church's communion silver, which was "seized & divided by Sherman's troops that burnt the Capital of the State. …