SC Humanities Awards Over $43,000 in Major Grants

The awards were selected through a competitive application and review process and are made possible by SC Humanities and the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Funded projects include an exhibit for the Sweetgrass Cultural Arts Pavilion at Waterfront Park in Charleston, a documentary on the Cuban Confederate soldier Ambrosio Gonzalez, and a conference on Billy Walker and Southern hymns at Converse College in Spartanburg. Matching community support for the 10 projects totaled $225,147.

A list of awarded grants is provided below:

Sponsoring Organization: Olde Towne Preservation Association
Project Title: Living History Park/Colonial Times
Project Director: Lynn Thompson
Award: $1,500
Cost-share: $44,000
Olde Town Preservation Association sponsors their 17th annual “Colonial Times: A Day To Remember” event at the Living History Park in North Augusta, SC on October 18-19, 2008. The event offers reenactments, living history presentations, and Chautauqua-style scholar presentations to show what life was like in the Colonial period in the South and is free and open to the public.

Sponsoring Organization: McCormick County Historical Commission
Project Title: Partnering for Publishing McCormick History
Project Director: Diane L. Schaffer
Award: $2,850
Cost-share: $12,150
The McCormick County Historical Commission is coordinating a collaborative project on researching and sharing McCormick County history. Scholar and author Bobby Edmonds will work with the Historical Commission, the McCormick County Chamber of Commerce, civic organizations, local citizens, and local schools to gather archival material about McCormick County and Cyrus McCormick to ultimately be used in the publication of a history book, McCormick: The Reaper Man and the Place. Scholarly lectures and a McCormick History Mini-Course will be offered to citizens and students during the duration of the collection and research project.

Sponsoring Organization: The Catesby Commemorative Trust, Inc.
Project Title: The Curious Mister Catesby documentary
Project Director: David J. Elliott
Award: $4,000
Cost-share: $27,250
The Curious Mister Catesby is a documentary about the life and works of the little-known 18th century English naturalist and artist, Mark Catesby. Catesby’s Natural History of Carolina, Florida, and the BahamasSouth Carolina and is the first fully-illustrated natural history of North America. The documentary will be shown on statewide ETV. was the result of three years of field studies in

Sponsoring Organization: Converse College
Project Title: The Legacy of Singin’ Billy Walker: Hymns in the South
Project Director: Dr. Leon Couch and Dr. Laura Feitzinger Brown
Award: $4,500
Cost-share: $10,418
Converse College plans an interdisciplinary symposium to explore the importance of hymns in Southern culture and to celebrate the legacy of Singin’ Billy Walker, a musician and Spartanburg native who arranged the composition of the hymn “Amazing Grace” as we know it today. The symposium will include a scholarly panel discussion about Walker and hymns, a concert showcasing hymn styles, several workshops and paper sessions, a luncheon, and a final lecture/concert celebrating Walker and will take place January 28-31, 2009—in time for the bicentennial of Walker’s birth.

Sponsoring Organization: USC Research Foundation
Project Title: Lincoln and the Civil War in Contemporary America
Project Director: Thomas J. Brown
Award: $2,000
Cost-share: $22,103
The University of South Carolina and the College of Charleston will co-sponsor a free, two-day public conference on “Lincoln at the Civil War in Contemporary America” in honor of the 2009 bicentennial of Lincoln’s birth. The conference is scheduled for February 6 – 7, 2009 in Charleston.

Sponsoring Organization: College of Charleston
Project Title: In Search of Ambrosio Gonzales: Soldier Under Two Flags Documentary
Project Director: Virginia T. Friedman
Award: $8,000
Cost-share: $8,005
The Center for Documentary at the College of Charleston seeks funds for a documentary about Cuban patriot and Confederate Colonel, Ambrosio Gonzales. In Search of Ambrosio Gonzales: Soldier Under Two Flags will explore this South Carolina resident’s life, military career, and legacy to our state. The film is intended for statewide public broadcast, film festivals, and DVD distribution.

Sponsoring Organization: Southern Office of the National Trust for Historic Preservation
Project Title: South Carolina Rosenwald Schools Traveling Exhibit
Project Director: Tracy Hayes
Award: $1,500
Cost-share: $22,000
The Southern Office of the National Trust for Historic Preservation plans to create a traveling exhibit about the history and legacy of Rosenwald Schools in South Carolina. The exhibit will travel to several rural communities, including communities that are home to past Rosenwald Schools.

Sponsoring Organization: Town of Mt. Pleasant
Project Title: Sweetgrass Cultural Arts Pavilion Exhibit at Waterfront Park
Project Director: Kelly Cousino
Award: $8,000
Cost-share: $38,543
The Sweetgrass Cultural Arts Pavilion will be a permanent structure at the Waterfront Memorial Park in Mt.Pleasant that will showcase the history, culture, and art of sweetgrass basket making. The Pavilion will include a permanent exhibit that will examine such topics as: African heritage, Charleston vendors, show baskets, family traditions, and preserving and protecting our heritage. The Pavilion is scheduled to be completed by May 2009 and will host the 2009 Sweetgrass Cultural Arts Festival.

Sponsoring Organization: Culture & Heritage Museums
Project Title: Historic Brattonsville Community Oral History Project
Project Director: Owen Glendening
Award: $3,000
Cost-share: $11,416
The Culture and Heritage Museums in Rock Hill seek funds for an oral history project in the historic African-American community of Brattonsville. Noted scholar Lisa M. Bratton, a descendent of the Brattonsville community, will conduct 25 oral history interviews, which will be transcribed, cross-referenced, and provided to several repositories, along with physical “material culture” such as photographs and letters. The Culture and Heritage Museums will also offer a public program about their findings and will integrate the oral histories into the existing interpretive programming at Historic Brattonsville.

Sponsoring Organization: The Gardner Group, Inc.
Project Title: Changing Lives: The Peter Cooper Story Documentary
Project Director: Janet Gardner
Award: $7,975
Cost-share: $29,262
Changing Lives: The Peter Cooper Story is a documentary project about 19th century business man and philanthropist Peter Cooper, who founded the Cooper-Limestone Institute that became Limestone College in Gaffney, SC. The documentary is planned for nationwide public broadcasting and will have premiers at Limestone College, the Upcountry History Museum, and the South Carolina State Museum.

The next major grant application deadline is January 7, 2009 for preliminary drafts. For more information about the projects listed above or on upcoming grant opportunities, please contact T.J. Wallace at 803-771-2477.