The Charleston Tradition

In the Low Country of South Carolina, English and Huguenot planters raised up a prosperous American city-state with a high culture and a lasting charm.

From the beginning, Charleston was different. Lord Anthony Ashley Cooper, chief among the Lords Proprietors, planned it that way. For his “darling,” as he called the settlement, he had philosopher John Locke prepare Fundamental Constitutions designed to avoid “a too numerous democracy.” This frontier province, the future Earl of Shaftesbury hoped, would be a bulwark of the aristocratic principle in government, a New World version of the England of gentlemen seated on their estates.