Beaufort District Collection Connections Blog

December, 2010

Grace Cordial

Baynard Woods shares his observations about Sheriff McTeer's strange cases and the interesting personalities with whom he came into contact in his research (and perhaps a few characters he got to know doing his research).

"Coffin Point: The Strange Cases of Sheriff Ed McTeer" with author Baynard Woods
Tuesday, December 14th
County Council Chambers
100 Ribaut Road

Program begins at 5:30 pm!

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On November 4th, naturalist and film-maker Greg Smith showed his documentary, Keeping the May River Wild in the Beaufort Branch as part of the BDC @ The Branches program series. It is a quiet film that captures the sights and sounds of the May River, including its plethora of wildlife and plant life.

SC ETV says "This program presents striking photography combined with a collection of the sounds of nature as well as interviews with people who understand the river, its residents and the challenges they face from rapid area development."

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Want something festive to do to put you into the holiday spirit, that at the same time offers financial and/or moral support to organizations committed to the preservation of cultural heritage in Beaufort County? Visit a local cultural heritage institution, take a local holiday tour, or dance beneath the stars!

November, 2010

Grace Cordial

According to Chapter 8 of The Source: A Guidebook of American Genealogy, (available within Ancestry Library Edition inside the library) as well as in print at Beaufort Branch, Bluffton Branch, and Hilton Head Island Branch:

"Perhaps no category of records is more important to the genealogist than those relating to land.... As might be expected, the systems of land granting and land tenure in these jurisdictions varied widely, and each must be studied separately."

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To supplement the "Keeping the May River Wild" program earlier this month, I prepared two lists of library materials about coastal ecology and documentary film-making to share with participants and online customers.

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The Beaufort County Historical Society is pleased to announce the participation list for their 2nd Annual Tour of Historic Churches. This year there are 6 churches on the tour plus an additional feature of choirs, Church yard tours, and Bell Ringer’s to bring in your holiday spirit. The Churches on tour will be open from 10 am til 4 pm. Fee.

The special events are:

10:00 am- First Presbyterian Church of Beaufort -1201 North St.-Choir Performance

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When I was tidying up the vertical files for relocation, I was reminded of a letter from the President of the United States in 1963 in the Library archives.

President Kennedy wrote: "Good libraries are as essential to an educated and informed people as the school system itself. The library is not only the custodian of our cultural heritage but the key to progress and the advancement of knowledge."

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I get a few electronic newsletters relating to genealogy in my work e-mail box every month in an attempt to stay abreast of things. Most of the time I just quickly peruse the headings and eliminate the entries as not particularly worth sharing. But, sometimes, as on November 1, I run across a tidbit I'd like to share or comment thereon.

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Press Release: Clemson University Libraries is the proud recipient of an IMLS National Leadership grant for the development of the Open Parks Grid project. Over the next 3 years, over 3 million pages of printed information held by the National Parks Service and the state parks of South Carolina, North Carolina and Georgia will be digitized and made full-text searchable. In addition, over 150,000 objects will also be digitized. These objects include maps, photographs and artifacts.

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Once upon a time, Native Americans roamed the wetlands, fished the estuaries, and camped along our riverbanks. Many small Native American groups lived in the area. These former residents left behind shell middens, pottery shards, and their words upon our landscape: Wimbee, Combahee, Kussoh, Yamasee, Pocotaligo, Coosawhatchie, Daufuskie, Salkehatchie. The groups were rather small and unorganized, key factors in the ability of European newcomers to successfully take advantage of them.

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A month from now, we are all in for a treat.

Baynard Woods will be doing a presentation for us about his newly released book, Coffin Point – in County Council Chambers -- on December 14th. Woods did some of his research in the BDC. Mark your calendars now. I think this one, because of the topics – Sheriff McTeer, voodoo doctors, rootwork, spells and hexes – will be quite popular. (Aren’t you already intrigued?)

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StudySC continues to improve.

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Please note: I'm counting Sept. 29th and Sept. 30th as part of October. We were closed until 5 pm on September 29th to relocate the BDC.

We held the Grand-Reopening private function on September 29th, and got back to daily business on September 30th.

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The 28th Annual Heritage Days celebration (brochure) at Penn Center starts next week.

Study Gullah culture up close and personal. There will be demonstrations of basketry, net-making, hair braiding, and bateau making that are part of a cultural legacy rooted in West Africa. Learn how to trace your family tree. Entertainment includes the Darien County Gullah Shouters, the Ujimaa African Dancers, and Aunt Pearlie Sue.

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Penn Center is offering a workshop on “AFRICAN AMERICAN GENEALOGY” as part of their Heritage Days Festival. The workshop will be held Friday, November 12th 9:30 a.m.-12:00 p.m. at the St. Helena Elementary School Gymnasium. A panel presentation by experts from the University of South Florida Africana Project, genealogists and researchers will present their ground-breaking work of placing tens of thousands of historic slave records online which has enabled millions of African Americans to learn about their ancestral heritage. Bring your wireless laptop and take a journey into the past.

October, 2010

Grace Cordial

Institutions throughout the world are posting digital collections drawn from their archives to share their unique materials more widely. Sometimes though, digital collections posted by other institutions - for their own reasons - also contain historical materials relevant to the history, culture, and environment of the former Beaufort District (which is my bailiwick). Those are the types of digital collections that I try to share with Connections readers from time to time. Here's an example from the Becker Archive at Boston College that I found while researching another topic:

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