Walter Edgar


Dr. Walter Edgar has two programs on South Carolina Public Radio: Walter Edgar's Journal, and South Carolina from A to Z. Dr. Edgar received his A.B. degree from Davidson College in 1965 and his Ph.D. from the University of South Carolina in 1969. After two years in the army (including a tour of duty in Vietnam), he returned to USC as a post-doctoral fellow of the National Archives, assigned to the Papers of Henry Laurens. In 1972 he joined the faculty of the History Department and in 1980 was named director of the Institute for Southern Studies. Dr. Edgar is the Claude Henry Neuffer Professor of Southern Studies and the George Washington Distinguished Professor of History. He retired from USC in 2012. He has written or edited numerous books about South Carolina and the American South, including South Carolina: A History, the first new history of the state in more than 60 years. With more than 37,000 copies in print and an audio edition, it has been a publishing phenomenon. Partisans & Redcoats: The Southern Conflict that Turned the Tide of the American Revolution is in its fourth printing. He is also the editor of the South Carolina Encyclopedia.

Ways to Connect

"C" is for the Cane Hoy Riot.

"A" is for Adams, James Hopkins.

  "Y" is for Yellow Jessamine, the state flower.

“D” is for Dorchester. In 1697 Congregationalists from Massachusetts settled on the north bank of the Ashley River, about twenty miles northwest of Charleston. Dorchester was a small market village, but it played a significant role in the economy and society of the upper Ashley. Local Anglicans completed the parish church of St. George’s Dorchester in the center of the village in 1720 and opened a free school in 1761. During the French and Indian War, the colony erected a tabby fort and brick powder magazine in Dorchester.

“C” is for Charismatics. Charismatics are mainline Christians who speak in tongues and practice such gifts of the Holy Spirit as prophecy and healing. While some Episcopal and Roman Catholics sponsor regular charismatic prayer services, a more visible outgrowth of the movement is large independent congregations described as “full-gospel” or “charismatic.” The movement began in the 1960s in California among Episcopalians and in the mid-west among Catholics. Southern Baptists strongly opposed speaking in tongues.

“B” is for Best Friend of Charleston. Commissioned by the South Carolina Canal and Railroad Company, the Best Friend of Charleston was the firs locomotive built in the United State for public service. Constructed in New York City at the West Point Foundry to run on the Charleston-Hamburg line, the Best Friend was christened by hopeful supporters on its arrival in Charleston in October 1830. The locomotive had its formal debut on Christmas Day 1830, pulling passenger cars from Charleston to Dorchester.

“A” is for Attakulla Kulla [d. ca. 1780]. Cherokee leader. Diplomat. Attakull Kulla, also known as Little Carpenter was an influential leader of the Cherokees in the midd-1700s. As a diplomat, he worked to advance the causes of the Overhill Cherokees of eastern Tennessee, especially in the area of trade problems. In the spring of 1730, he was part of a delegation of Cherokees taken to London to cement a recent allegiance to King George II.

"C" is for Cardozo, Francis Lewis.

"B" is for Barry, Catharine Moore.

"A" is for Allen, William Hervey, Jr.

"W" is for Wells, Helena.

"T" is for Timber

Nov 17, 2014

"T" is for Timber.

"S" is for Salley, Eulalie Chafee.

Velvet Blue Spread Fungus is Common on Oaks

"R" is for the Reformed Episcopal Church.

"P" is for Paul, Marian Baxter.

"O" is for Owens Field

Nov 11, 2014

"O" is for Owens Field.

"N" is for Ninety-Six, the Battles of...

"L" is for LeConte, Joseph

"J" is for John's Island Presbyterian Church

"H" is for Happyville

Nov 3, 2014

"H" is for Happyville

"S" is for Secession Crisis of 1850-51.

Sir Robert Worcester

- All Stations: Fri, Oct 31, 12 pm | News Stations: Sun, Nov 2, 2014 -

The Magna Carta is a charter of liberties to which the English barons forced King John to give his assent in June 1215 at Runnymede in June of 1215. It is also considered by many to be a cornerstone of human rights to which the U. S. Constitution's Bill of Rights can trace its ancestry. Join Dr. Edgar to talk about the upcoming celebration of the 800th anniversary of the Magna Carta are Sir Robert Worcester, Chair of the Magna Carta 800th Committee and the 2014 James Otis Lecturer at the South Carolina General Assembly, and Joel Collins, member of the South Carolina Chapter of the American Board of Trial Advocates.

"R" is for Riverbanks Zoo and Garden.

"P" is for Piedmont

Oct 29, 2014

"P" is for Piedmont.

"M" is for McCleod, Thomas Gordon.

“L” is for Local Government. Local Government in South Carolina consists of general-purpose governments and special-purpose governments. Counties and municipalities comprise the general-purpose governments. Special-purpose governments include school districts and special-purpose districts such as fire, recreation, sewer and water districts. The most significant special purpose districts in the state are the eighty-five school districts. The state constitution and statutes specify the basic governance structure and the general powers, duties, and authorities of counties and municipalities.

“F” is for Fundamentalists. The designation “fundamentalists” is an umbrella term that takes in many theologically conservative, evangelical Protestants from several denominations and independent congregations. As a movement, fundamentalism emerged in the late 19th and early 20th centuries as a reaction to “modernist” currents that embraced historical-critical methods of studying the Bible. In time fundamentalism came to represent a belief system that stressed a literal interpretation of the Scriptures.

“D” is for Drayton, William Henry [1742-1779]. Revolutionary Leader. Planter. He was educated in England. In 1769, his essay in the South Carolina Gazette, opposing the non-importation association, created a political firestorm that resulted in his being ostracized politically, socially, and economically. He went to England where he hoped his views would be more appreciative. In England, he published The Letters of Freeman, a compilation of his essays in favor of British imperial policy—which won for him a seat on South Carolina’s Royal Council.

“B” is for Black Business Districts. Prior to the Civil War, free persons of color in South Carolina owned businesses—generally in the service industry—such as blacksmith and harness shops. These businesses served and operated within both the black and white communities. Once segregation was enacted in the 1890s, black business districts appeared. Jim Crow laws forced many businesses either to operate separate facilities for black customers—or deny them service. Black entrepreneurs stepped in to establish operations in which African Americans could be served with courtesy and dignity.