Connecting Communities Through History

Historic Columbia Foundation has conducted a three-year project working to chronicle the history of six historic downtown Columbia neighborhoods. “Connecting Communities Through History” will culminate in January 2011 with a series of workshops at the Seibels House in Columbia, SC. SC Humanities supported this project through a Major Grant in September 2009.

The six neighborhoods that have been studied are Arsenal Hill, Cottontown, Heathwood, Hollywood-Rose Hill, Lower Waverly, and Old Shandon. Representatives from each of these neighborhoods worked with staff from the Historic Columbia Foundation to collect historic images, memories, and oral histories documenting the local history. The project has resulted in interactive websites, historical wayside signage, and walking/driving tour brochures.

This exciting project will wrap-up in January 2011 with a series of workshops led by USC professor and oral historian Dr. Kent Germany and educator, editor, and local historian Dr. Warner Montgomery. The workshops will take place on January 25, January 26, and January 27, 2011 from 5:30 – 7:00 p.m. at the historic Seibels House, located at 1601 Richland Street, Columbia, SC 29201. The workshops will look at the process of conducting local history studies and will include the screening of the documentary Bearing Witness about Columbia’s Ward One community, presented by representatives of USC’s African-American Studies Department.

Funded through a variety of agencies, including the Institute for Museums and Library Services and SC Humanities, Connecting Communities Through History has allowed Historic Columbia Foundation to move beyond the physical parameters of the historic sites under its stewardship and serve as a resource in facilitating the process of chronicling neighborhood history.

For more information about Historic Columbia Foundation, please visit the website:

The mission of SC Humanities is to enrich the cultural and intellectual lives of all South Carolinians. SC Humanities programs and initiatives are balanced, reflecting sensitivity to the diversity of ideas, encourage open dialogue, demonstrate integrity, and are ethical in operations.