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Charleston Time Machine
- Every week on Sun at 3:00 PM
Charleston Time Machine is a podcast and illustrated blog created by Dr. Nic Butler, historian at theCharleston County Public Library. Drawing forgotten stories from archival sources, Dr. Butler explores the less familiar corners of local history with a broad range of stories that highlight connections between past and present in the Lowcountry of South Carolina.
Other Facts about Charleston Time Machine:
•Launched in January 2017.
• 250episodes (as of February 2023).
•More than 110 hours of audio content (as of February 2023).
•The text version of the podcast includes more than a million words and hundreds of illustrations.
Dec 3, 2023 3:00 PM – 3:30 PM
Charleston Time Machine - Shade_trees - 12/3/23
Charleston Time Machine - The Shady History Of Protecting Lowcountry Trees: Shade Trees form an important part of the Lowcountry’s natural landscape and the focus of umbrageous thoughts on Arbor Day. While some in our community would like to uproot grand oaks standing along our most scenic highways, others defend the venerable trees from the ravages of modernity. The moss-draped canopy they provide isn’t just a picturesque feature of our rural roads, it’s the manifestation of an ancient law rooted in the protection of travelers from highway robbers in Medieval England.
Nov 19, 2023 3:00 PM – 3:30 PM
Charleston Time Machine - In the late winter of 1684, the leaders of eight Native American tribes in the Lowcountry of South Carolina surrendered their traditional homelands to English colonists. A series of documents ostensibly signed on a single day that February ceded Indigenous rights to millions of acres between the rivers Stono and Savannah, ranging from the Atlantic Ocean to the Appalachian Mountains. In this episode of Charleston Time Machine, we’ll explore the forces driving this historic bargain, parse details of the several transactions, and consider their collective impact on the native people in question.
Nov 12, 2023 3:00 PM – 3:30 PM
Charleston Time Machine 220_First_People 11/13/23
Charleston Time Machine - The First People: The Lowcountry of South Carolina once belonged to more than a dozen distinct groups of Native Americans, but disease, warfare, and displacement gradually reduced their numbers. Although they were virtually extinct by the middle of the eighteenth century and their history is now largely forgotten, their names remain fixed in our modern vocabulary.
Nov 5, 2023 3:00 PM – 3:30 PM
Charleston Time Machine Petit Versailles 11-5-23
Petit Versailles, a lost residence in suburban Charleston, linked the tragic stories of two women who expired prematurely during the second quarter of the eighteenth century. The house fronting the Cooper River was later annexed toa brewery and might have disappeared beforetheAmerican Revolution, but the possibility of its survival into the twentieth century haunts the history of Ansonborough.
Oct 29, 2023 3:00 PM – 3:30 PM
Charleston Time Machine - Buried_Alive - 10/29
In the spirit of Halloween,this week's Charleston Time Machine concerns one of the most prevalent and legitimate fears held by the people of eighteenth-century Charleston. I’m talking about aph phobia—the fear of being buried alive. Premature burial was a real concern back in thatera, when the line between life and death was poorly understood. Today we’ll explore a few cases that are sure to leave a haunting impression
Oct 22, 2023 4:00 PM – 4:30 PM
Charleston Time Machine - 268_Demolition_by_Neglect -10-22-23
At the beginning of the eighteenth century, South Carolina’s colonial government raised a fortified trace of earthen walls and moats around the nucleus of urban Charleston. These defensive works constrained the town’s growth for more than twenty years, but then quietly vanished before a burst of civic expansion in the mid-1730s. Questions of when and why the earthworks were dismantled have baffled generations of historians and inspired competing theories. In this episode of Charleston Time Machine, we’ll unpack the forgotten story of government neglect that gradually reduced the“Walled City”during the late 1720s
Oct 15, 2023 3:00 PM – 3:30 PM
Charleston Time Machine - Ellen_ODonovan_Rossa-10/15
Charleston Time Machine - The Unmarked Grave of Ellen O’Donovan RossaThe death of Ellen O’Donovan Rossa, a poor Irish widow, in Charleston in September1870 might have gone unnoticed by the world, but for the international notoriety of her incarcerated son, Jeremiah O’DonovanRossa. His reputation as an ardent nationalist inspired local Irishmen to memorialize Rossa’s mother as an expression of respect and solidarity. Their Efforts were thwarted by the hands of time, however, as Ellen’s grave remains unmarked today
Oct 8, 2023 3:00 PM – 3:30 PM
Charleston Time Machine 267_Spanish_consuls 10/8/23
Charleston Time Machine - Spanish and Cuban Consuls in Charleston,1795–1959 The presence of a Spanish and later a Cuban consular office in Charleston between 1795 and 1959 provides a framework for tracking the rise and fall of forgotten maritime trade route that brought Latin flavors to the Lowcountry Of South Carolina
Oct 1, 2023 3:00 PM – 3:30 PM
Charleston Time Machine Green_Book 10-1-23.mp3
Charleston Time Machine - The Green Book For Charleston, 1938–1966 The 2018 film,Green Book, generated a lot of interest in the publication that inspired the title. Charleston isn’t part of the film’s 1962 storyline, but our community was definitely included in that eponymous African-American travel guide. Today we’ll investigate the history of the Green Book Phenomenon and examine just how accurately mid-twentieth-century Charleston was represented in that long-running publication.
Sep 24, 2023 3:00 PM – 3:30 PM
Charleston Time Machine French Quarter 9-24-23
Charleston Time Machine- Do you know the official boundaries of Charleston’s“French Quarter,”or the curious circumstances behind its creation fifty years ago?This week,Charleston Time Machine reviews the1973 battle to preserve a single block of warehouses and examines the tenuous French Pedigree of the neighborhood in question.
Sep 17, 2023 3:00 PM – 3:30 PM
Charleston Time Machine - Earliest Fortifications - 9/17/23
Charleston became a “walled city” during its colonial infancy, but details surrounding the genesis of the town’s early fortifications have long been a mystery. Examining recently-discovered archival evidence, the Charleston Time Machine explores the surprisingly limited preparations made by residents of the 1680s to defend their little town at “Oyster Point.”
Sep 10, 2023 3:00 PM – 3:30 PM
Charleston Time Machine 265_Hog_Island
Charleston Time Machine - Hog Island to Patriots Point: A Brief HistoryPatriots Point, known as Hog Island before 1973, has been radically transformed by nature and humans over the past three centuries.Its Evolution From a tiny but habitable island to an expansive, vacant marshland,to a thriving community atop a mountain of dredge spoil,illustrates the shifting dynamics of tidal forces and human engineering that have reshaped the local ecology
Sep 3, 2023 3:00 PM – 3:30 PM
Charleston Time Machine - Ropemakers_Lane 9/3
Charleston Time Machine - Ropemakers Lane: The name of a narrow alley in urban Charleston evokes images of twisting fibers into useful objects, but that industry was just one facet of the lane’s colorful history. To gain a fuller picture of the lane’s development over the past two - and -a- half centuries, lets reach back to the town’s early days to meet the people who created the lane and crafted the ropes that inspired the present name.
Aug 27, 2023 4:00 PM – 4:30 PM
Charleston Time Machine Tail_of_Washingtons_Horse 8-27-23
Charleston Time Machine - Have you seen the tail of the horse in the portrait of George Washington that hangs in Charleston’s City Hall? Have you heard the tale of how that painting came to be, and why the horse’s rear-end is so prominently displayed? Is this depiction an insult, or an inside joke?
Aug 20, 2023 3:00 PM – 3:30 PM
Charleston Time Machine- 264_Champneys_Row_part_2
Aug 13, 2023 3:00 PM – 3:30 PM
Charleston Time Machine - John Champneys and His Controversial Row, Part 1 John Champneys was a Charleston factor and wharf owner whose loyalty to the British Crown deranged his life during the American Revolution. While surviving documents provide details of his imprisonment, exile, and return, the slender row of brick stores Champneys built during the war at the southeast corner of East Bay and Exchange Streets bears silent witness to his tumultuous experience.
Aug 6, 2023 3:00 PM – 3:30 PM
Bathing to Beat the Heat in Early Charleston, Part 1- Before the advent of air conditioning and running water in the Charleston area, bathing was the sole means of relief from the summer heat , but the practice was a luxury enjoyed by some and avoided by others. This week’s program peeks behind closed doors to explore the rise of indoor bathing within both private residences and commercial bath houses
Jul 30, 2023 3:00 PM – 3:30 PM
Charleston Time Machine - Murder_at_Four_Holes Sunday, July 30th
Charleston Time Machine - Murder at Four Holes-When Two Native American men of the Notchee tribe murdered several Catawba Indiansin cold blood during the summer of 1744, the government of South Carolina interceded to prevent the outbreak of Indigenous Warfare. This dramatic story has all the elements of a prime-time detective series, but it hasn’t been included in any mainstream histories of early SouthCarolina.In the first of a two-part series,we'll trace the root of an Indian feudand follow the trail of a forgotten crime that threatened to ignite a blood war on the colonial frontier
Jul 16, 2023 4:00 PM – 4:30 PM
Charleston Time Machine Akin_family_history 7/16
Most of Charleston is familiar with the Aiken family of Antebellum times, whose railroadwealth literally stamped the family’s name across our state, but hardly anyone remembers the“other”Akin family of colonialSouth Carolina. From modest beginnings in the 1690s to greatwealth in the 1750s and then extinction in the 1840s, the lesser-known Akins left an importantcultural legacy on Meeting Street that most of Charleston has long forgotten. Before we canappreciate the Akin Foundling Hospital, we need to learn a bit about the family fortunes thatinspired our community’s first and only home for motherless infant.