James Island was first established as “Jamestown” in 1671. In the early 1700s, an Anglican parish was established here, but rebelling Scottish Presbyterians branched off and formed their own congregation, which became the first Presbyterian congregation in the province.
Folly Beach, which was once a favored camping ground for Native Americans, is today, a popular beachside resort for tourists. Joanna Angle discusses the history of this famous South Carolina beach.
James Island is also a strategic location for providing defense for Charleston Harbor against naval attack. Between 1704 and 1708, British troops built an outpost here, to defend against French warships. These fortifications were named in honor of Sir Nathaniel Johnson, proprietary governor of the province. Several other forts were built at this location throughout the 1700s, but due to weather conditions and the ever changing military situations, the fort was in a constant state of reconstruction, until it was vacated in 1865. The first shot of the War Between the States was fired from James Island, and the target was Fort Sumter.
Brian Varnado, assistant director of the Charleston museum, joins to discuss the history of another one of James Island’s old fortifications: Battery Pringle.