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Still wandering around Ansonborough, this week we explore 57 Laurens Street, built around 1836 in the Greek Revival style. Two years after this house was built, the fire of 1838 wiped out most of the Ansonborough houses; fortunately, 57 Laurens and several of the homes around it escaped the blaze.

Godfrey KHill the “Gullah Man” always talks about his grandmama. Godfrey says that family is one of the most powerful words ever, and it's important to know that in the Gullah-Geechie culture it’s an action word. To call someone family, you must treat them as your family. That’s one of the many lessons Godfrey has learned from his grandmama. You can find Grandmama Jefferson sitting on Vendue Range inside her tiny little hiding spot just in the front of Waterfront Park across from Harbor View.

Another structure to escape the fire of 1838 in Ansonborough is 55 Laurens Street. Fortunately, Laurens Street is on the north side of Ansonborough, and most of this area was not affected by that fire.

Built in 1818 by James Jervey, this imposing brick mansion retains much of its Federal style ornamentation inside; the exterior brick is laid in Flemish bond (alternating header and stretcher on each row). 55 Laurens is a large double house with a raised basement; the original kitchen building and another dependency building are located on the rear portion of the lot. From the outside, you would never guess that the building is now made up of condominiums and has been sin e the 1980s. In any event, walking among the primarily single houses on this street, 55 Laurens certainly stands out and makes a statement. The house is also reflective of the owner's prominence in the community.

Via PURE Theatre

In conjunction with the Southeastern regional premiere of his play This Random World, playwright Steven Dietz will join PURE Theatre for a special post-show talkback and reception following the Saturday, March 10, 2018 performance. “We are honored to welcome Steven to the Lowcountry and to be able to share our interpretation of This Random World with him,” says Sharon Graci, PURE Theatre’s Artistic Director. “When I first read his play, it resonated so strongly with me that I felt compelled to share it with Charleston. This play focuses on the beautiful inevitability of encounter, so to have Steven joining us for a performance only deepens the insightful themes of the play.”

The house at 82 Anson Street in Ansonborough is one of the few buildings that escaped the 1838 fire that destroyed many of the structures in this area. This house was built about 1799, and the interior retains its original Federal style features.

A wealthy merchant with his home on Meeting Street, Josiah Smith built this hosue for his daughter Mary Smith. Mary never married; she died in 1832 and left the property to her nieces and nephews. The house remained in the family until a few years after the Civil War.

We'll explore Ansonborough, the first suburb of Charles Town, for the next few weeks. For an easy reference of what this area covers today, picture yourself on East Bay Street, the east boundary, in front of the Harris Teeter grocery store and consider several streets north to Calhoun Street, several streets south to Hasell Street with the west boundary as Anson Street. Now you've got a snapshot of the area of Ansonborough, somewhat expanded from its original acreage.

Are you or your kids looking for something adventurous to do in Charleston? Fresh out of cool ideas, and needing to try something different? Do you want an outdoor experience that's both a mental and physical challenge? 
Why not get out and try the Challenge Course at Wild Blue Ropes Adventure Park? It's a completely addictive activity that Charleston locals and visitors of all ages enjoy!

Completing our exploration of Rainbow Row (79 East Bay at the corner of East Bay and Tradd Streets to 107 East Bay), we'll stop at 83 and 87 East Bay Street, both of which buildings have a connection to Susan Pringle Frost, founder of the Preservation Society of Charleston in 1920. Frost, who could trace her Charleston roots back to the early years of the settlement, was a court stenographer for many years. She was also a suffragette with a passion for saving Charleston's historic architecture. Being the first woman realtor in Charleston, Frost was in a unique position to realize that passion.

Improve your run…with rowing!

As spring gets closer so does race season in the Lowcountry.  For many of us, this winter’s cold weather has made it hard to start training.  Especially for those who made running a 5 or 10K a New Year’s resolution.
The Cooper River Bridge Run, Charleston’s largest race, is just a little over 8 weeks away and there are over 18 area races before then!
For most of us, training for a running race means running…

Continuing our exploration of Rainbow Row (79 East Bay at the corner of East Bay and Tradd Streets to 107 East Bay), today we'll stop at 95 East Bay Street. 95 East Bay was built around 1741 by Colonel Othniel Beale, whose residence I wrote about last week.

It's easy to point out Rainbow Row by the curved or Dutch-gabled roof of 95 East Bay, which stands out like a beacon among the rooftops of this row. The house has been renovated, yet retains fine Georgian interior elements. Like the others on this row, the landscaped garden behind the house is long and narrow.

A majority of seniors (nearly 90 percent, according to AARP) say they want to stay in their own home for a long as possible, and there can be many financial and emotional advantages to this choice. But this decision also can ultimately lead to social isolation, especially if a spouse, partner, or long-time friends and neighbors pass away or leave the home because they require inpatient healthcare services...

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