When: Sun., Sept. 8, 2 p.m. and Thu., Sept. 19, 3 p.m. 2013
It’s a big year for African-American history, with the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation and the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington. The Preservation Society of Charleston is marking the occasion by honoring local heroes of the Civil Rights Movement. The PSC will unveil two new Civil Rights Markers this fall, one on Johns Island and one at MUSC. First, the Progressive Club marker will open on River Road on Johns Island on Sept. 8 at 2 p.m. The marker honors Esau Jenkins, a local resident who founded the Progressive Club as a civic education center and bused African Americans from Johns Island to the Navy shipyard and other places in Charleston so they could get to work, vote, and conduct their banking. Jenkins’ bus will be on site at the unveiling, and his family is working with Clemson to restore what is left of the original site into a community center. The second Civil Rights marker, honoring the Hospital Workers Strike, will be unveiled at MUSC on Sept. 19 at 3 p.m. On April 25, 1969, African-American MUSC workers went on strike for 113 days to protest unfair work conditions. The workers were led by Mary Moultrie, who will be in attendance during the ceremony. Coretta Scott King also marched with the MUSC workers. “It was the culmination of the Civil Rights Movement in Charleston,” says Aurora Harris of the Preservation Society of Charleston.