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Preserving Charleston’s Heritage

Preserving Charleston’s Heritage

Charleston, SC boasts a rich history and architectural heritage, both of which have contributed to the city’s diversity and high quality of life. To protect and preserve its heritage, the city of Charleston has put a preservation plan in place that focuses on the city’s infrastructure, transportation, and neighborhoods.

The Historic Preservation Plan

The creation of Charleston’s Historic Preservation Plan came about as the result of the rising suburbanization, the development of strip malls, and the neglect of properties in the city’s historic district. The plan, which was created in 1974, aimed to have a building inventory, a revised building height ordinance, and a stronger Board of Architectural Review.

The city enlisted the help of the Historic Charleston Foundation (HCF) and Page & Turnbull, a historic preservation firm. Page & Turnbull held various workshops and review sessions to gather input from various members of the community. Today, the majority of the plan has already been implemented.

The Historic Charleston Foundation

The Historic Charleston Foundation played a huge role in developing the Historic Preservation Plan. Established in 1947, this advocacy organization is dedicated to preserving Charleston’s history, culture, and architecture.

  • House museums

    The Historic Charleston Foundation has purchased a variety of historical homes and buildings throughout the years. These houses are open to the public as museums, with some being used as exhibition spaces. The foundation even has a free app that can guide visitors as they tour the houses. Some of the notable house museums are the Aiken Rhett House and the Nathaniel Russell House.

  • Research

    Scholarly research and documentation is vital in preserving Charleston’s heritage. The Historic Charleston Foundation has compiled all property records of the city’s historic buildings, homes, and plantations in the Margaretta Childs Archives. The archive also contains news clippings, photographs, archaeological reports, and maps.

  • Education

    The Historic Charleston Foundation also provides students with the opportunity to learn about Charleston’s history and heritage through its educational programs. House tours allow students to get a glimpse of the past and see what life was like back then. The foundation also has a Masons, Merchants, and Mathematicians program that immerses students and lets them solve real-world math problems.

  • Events and tours

    The foundation regularly hosts various events and tours to celebrate the city’s heritage. The annual Festival of Houses and Gardens, for one, gives you access to the city’s finest private houses and gardens during the spring season. Aside from learning about Charleston’s rich history and heritage, guests also get to see for themselves the historic architecture and the magnificent private gardens. Other events and tours include the Charleston Antiques Show and the custom-designed Connoisseur Tours.

  • Advocacy programs

    To maintain and preserve the community’s unique character, the foundation’s advocacy team regularly attends meetings with the Board of Architectural Review, the Planning Commission, and the Board of Zoning Appeals.

Charleston’s rich history and heritage are one of the top reasons why many have chosen to live in this diverse city. Ready to look at houses for sale in Charleston, SC? Talk to Robert Taylor Luxury Properties at 949.338.8885 or email RobertJSTaylor(at)gmail(dotted)com. You may also reach us here.