August 2016 Programs

Time_Machine_August_2016I’m pleased to announce the premier of two new programs focusing on two very different aspects of early Charleston history.  In the first, I’ll return to my artistic roots and commence a series of lectures on an important part of the musical culture of the Palmetto City.  In the second, I’ll unveil the results of some recent ground-penetrating radar aimed at identifying subterranean traces of Charleston’s early fortifications.  It’s back to school season, and I’m winding my Time Machine back to the early days of South Carolina history.  Many more details to follow soon!

Opera in Charleston, Part 1: The Colonial Years

The first opera performed in North America debuted in Charleston in early 1735, and  our city hosted many more productions of English musical theater in the subsequent four decades.  In this program, the first of a seven-part series, I’ll explore the music, the performers, the venues, and the audiences involved in Charleston’s first tentative steps towards embracing this popular European art form.   Whether you’re an opera fan or not, this is an important and under-studied aspect of our community’s cultural heritage.  And because it’s the beginning of a new series, I’m offering two chances to hear the first installment.

  • Wednesday, 10 August 2016 at 6 p.m.
  • Saturday, 13 August 2016 at 1 p.m.

Both events will be held in the Charleston County Public Library Main Auditorium, 68 Calhoun Street, 29401.

Searching for Colonial Charleston’s

South Wall and Moat

In the early 1700s the 62-acre center of urban Charleston was surrounded by a trapezoid-shaped system of walls and moats.  The approximate locations of the north, west, and east walls are known, but the location of the south wall and moat is a bit of a mystery.  We know it was roughly parallel to Vanderhorst’s Creek, which is now Water Street, but details are lacking.  This summer members of the Mayor’s Walled City Task Force spent an afternoon trying to locate these features using ground penetrating radar in an area now used as a parking lot by First Baptist Church and School.  Did the technology reveal the lost location of the wall and moat?  To learn the answer, you’ll have to join me for an exciting new program where I’ll describe the process and reveal the graphic results of this investigation.

  • Tuesday, 30 August 2016 at 6 p.m., at Charleston County Public Library Main Auditorium, 68 Calhoun Street, 29401.

Questions? Drop me a line at butlern[at] or call 843–805–6968 for more information.