SC Features

Interviews, profiles, and and informational programming about the Palmetto State.

Narrative: Love Letters from a Soldier in World War One

Mar 17, 2017
Weathered envelope to Caroline Reese, postmarked November 25, 1918.
Wilson McElveen

This edition of Narrative features an interview from StoryCorps, a unique oral history project that collects the voices of our times. In 2012, Wilson McElveen went to the StoryCorps mobile booth in Charleston to share letters written to his grandmother, Caroline Wardlaw Reese, during World War One.  Her boyfriend at the time, a young man named Augustus Jerome Beck, enrolled in the army in Columbia 1918 and wrote to her throughout his time serving in Europe.

Here, Wilson McElveen shares a selection of letters from Jerome Beck.

Edvard Tchivzhel, conductor of Greenville Symphony Orchestra.
Tut Underwood/SC Public Radio

    Live classical music is widely available in the Palmetto State, thanks to orchestras in at least seven South Carolina cities. But even the same music can be approached differently by different orchestras and conductors. 

Cokie Roberts, Author and political commentator
Thelisha Eaddy/SC Public Radio

Cokie Roberts is an author and political commentator for ABC News and NPR. Recently, she spent time at two Columbia-area schools to share her new book with students. In Ladies of Liberty, The Women Who Shaped Our Nation, Roberts uses the letters and journals of women to give another perspective of what was happening during the early years of the nation. 

In this edition of Narrative, Roberts shares how she selected the women featured in her book.

A volunteer's transport van bears the slogan MAMAS on the Move.
Tut Underwood/SC Public Radio

Many stray dogs from South Carolina are finding homes in other states thanks to Bamberg’s Mary Ann Morris Animal Society, also known as MAMAS.  The no-kill animal shelter has developed a transport system that shuttles dogs to willing owners by way of a “pipeline” of volunteers that relay the animals from North Carolina to Maine and Vermont.  The dedicated volunteers talk about their devotion to saving these pets for new owners who are excited to give them loving homes, and keep in touch with MAMAS to update staff on the lives of dogs they’ve rescued. 

Narrative: Sharing in an Aunt's Historic Medical Career

Feb 28, 2017
Left: Juliette Satterwhite, Right: Maude Callen
Courtesy of Juliette Satterwhite

When Juliette Satterwhite was a young girl, she spent many Sunday afternoons in rural Berkeley County at her aunt Maude Callen's house in Pineville, South Carolina. These family gatherings introduced Satterwhite to the medical work Callen provided to people in the area. In December of 1951, Life magazine published a 12-page photo essay of Callen and work she did. She is credited with delivering some 800 babies. Callen's story is also featured in the new National Museum of African-American History and Culture in Washington, DC.

Sitting at a restaurant on Two-Notch Road in Columbia, I.S. Leevy Johnson, along with family and friends, waited to hear election results. The year was 1970 and later that night, the group celebrated as Leevy Johnson was elected to the state's General Assembly. He, along with two other African-American men, became the first to serve in that office since the end of Reconstruction.

In this edition of Narrative, the Columbia attorney talks about the community effort that helped him win and ultimately add to South Carolina history.

Game Offers Unique Therapy for Stroke Rehabilitation

Feb 21, 2017
Occupational Therapist Michelle Woodbury uses a game to enhance therapy sessions with stroke patients.
Taylor Crouch

In order to meet the needs of her patients, an occupational therapist at the Medical University of South Carolina teamed up with technical experts from Clemson to create tool to engage patients in the clinic and at home. Through a virtual therapy session, patients can play a game to meet their therapy goals, different than traditional care.

Mopeds at Hawg Scooters, Rosewood Drive, Columbia. 2.	More South Carolinians are riding mopeds, and there are numerous reasons why.
Tut Underwood/SC Public Radio

On any day in any college town across the state a multitude of students can be seen negotiating the streets on mopeds. But they are by no means the only riders. The use of these low-power scooters is exploding across South Carolina, and the nation. Today we talk with two dealers who explain the phenomenon, as well as a rider who tells of the advantages he gets from his moped.

James Felder during his Narrarive interview at SC Public Radio
Thelisha Eaddy/ SC Public Radio

In 1967 James Felder had recently returned to South Carolina to run the Voter Education Project.  In the span of a few years, Felder helped register thousands of black South Carolinians to vote. In 1970 those votes proved to be beneficial for him and two other African Americans. That year Felder, along with I. S. Leevy Johnson and Herbert Fielding, became the first African-Americans voted to the state’s general assembly since Reconstruction. In this edition of Narrative, Dr. James Felder talks about traveling the state to register people to vote.

Columbia Mayor Steve Benjamin with daughters Bethany and Jordan Grace
StoryCorps

This edition of Narrative features an interview from StoryCorps, an oral history project where friends and loved ones interview each other. Recently City of Columbia Mayor Steve Benjamin was interviewed by his daughters Bethany and Jordan Grace.

StoryCorps

This edition of Narrative features an interview from StoryCorps, a unique oral history project that collects the voices of our times. 96-year-old Sarah Leverette graduated from USC’s Law School in 1943, one of the first women to attend. Here, Leverette tells her friend Lisa Wilcox about her experience breaking down barriers to practice law.

Mr. and Mrs. Mark Cain sign their wedding certificate before friends at the Columbia Fireflies ball park.
Tut Underwood/ SC Public Radio

A recent wedding at the home of the Columbia Fireflies minor league baseball team would seem unusual to most people, but to a group of University of South Carolina students, it’s just part of a class.  The wedding planning class is included in the curriculum of the Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management program, and for at least a decade has had the dual advantage of giving students experience in all the details that go into planning a wedding and providing the bride and groom with a free wedding and honeymoon.  The catch?  They must give the students total control over everything.  But s

StoryCorps

This edition of Narrative features an interview from StoryCorps, a project that collects the stories of everyday people to create an oral history of America. Recently, Columbia resident Al Black interviewed his friend Jean Williams about her life growing up and living in the South and how she first became aware of racial injustice. Here, Black asks Williams to share a moment that opened her eyes to racism and prejudice.

"B" is for Baldwin, William Plews, III [born 1944]. Novelist. Born in McClellandville, Baldwin was reared in the Carolina lowcountry. He is a “would-be” architect with two degrees from Clemson—one in history and the other in English. After college, he returned to McClellanville where he has made a living by crabbing, oystering, shrimping,  serving as a magistrate, writing screenplays for Hollywood, and writing fiction. His first novel, The Hard to Catch Mercy [1993] was universally well-received.

A member of the Greatest Generation Columbia's Moffatt Burriss recalls his World War II experiences.
Tut Underwood/SC Public Radio

  Moffatt Burris of Columbia is one of the heroes who helped save the world from tyranny during World War II. He fought to liberate Sicily and at Anzio to free Italy. But perhaps his most memorable exploits came as a paratrooper who participated in Operation Market Garden, a failed attempt to hasten the end of the war with a massive jump into Holland.

As recruits train at Fort Jackson, their weapons stand at the ready.
Tut Underwood/SC Public Radio

As the army’s largest basic training post, Fort Jackson is a vital part of the nation’s defense. Today’s story looks at the approaching centennial of the fort, begun in 1917 in response to the need to train soldiers for World War I. Historians Henry Howe and Fritz Hamer comment on the fort’s beginnings as Camp Jackson, how it was built and its impact on the Midlands economy, as well as its prospects for the future.

Narrative: A Grandfather's Army Career

Dec 21, 2016
StoryCorps

This edition of Narrative features an interview from StoryCorps, a unique oral history project that collects the voices of our times. Here, eight-year-old Jack Paolucci asks his grandfather Colonel John Paolucci about his time in the army.

Narrative: Family Rescued by Boat from Historic Floods

Dec 21, 2016
StoryCorps

This edition of Narrative features an interview from StoryCorps, an oral history project based on the idea that the stories of everyday people are the most important and interesting of all. Recently, Columbia resident Beki Gettys and her eleven-year-old son Eli sat down to talk about the 2015 floods.

  Local theater is found both in quantity and quality throughout South Carolina. Today we hear from representatives of two of them: Columbia’s Town Theater is the oldest continually operating community theater in America, and will turn 100 in 2019. It specializes in musicals, but presents other known plays as well. Across town, Trustus Theater employs professionals to bring audiences new productions that sometimes “push the envelope.” These and many other theaters across the state help their cities both economically, drawing tourism, and, of course, enrich them culturally as well.

Fort Jackson VolunTEENS Serve in the Midlands

Dec 19, 2016
Mary Reardon

VolunTEENS is school-year programs connecting students with the Red Cross. Based in the Fort Jackson community, the group promotes the Red Cross mission through service projects, such as supporting the South Carolina Special Olympics, public education initiatives about health or fire safety, and disaster recovery. For example, their November event was to help the Red Cross clean, inspect, and pack away the cots used in the shelters during Hurricane Matthew. After the October floods in 2015, the VolunTEENS came out for multiple days of service in the Midlands.

Scam detector Frank Abagnale with the medallions he has received from organizations he has coached or helped to prevent or detect fraud.
Tut Underwood/SC Public Radio

     Charleston resident Frank Abagnale has helped the FBI and numerous government agencies and corporations detect and stop fraud for more than 40 years. His expertise in the field comes largely from the fact that between the ages of 16 to 21, Abagnale was himself a scam artist and check forger, whose international exploits are recounted in his book “Catch Me if you Can,” and a major motion picture of the same name.

Arthur Erskine of West Columbia and friend.
Lauren Rivers

Most men don’t frequent beauty parlors, but Arthur “Cotton” Erskine of West Columbia visits his every day from Thanksgiving to Christmas to prepare his hair and long beard for a role he’s portrayed for years: Santa Claus.  “Santa Cotton,” as he is known, becomes the Jolly Old Elf for events such as Christmas parades, private photo sessions and store appearances, sometimes with as many as six appointments a day.  He is “Ho Ho” to his grandchildren, and here he discusses the fun of  dealing with children, and the unusual requests they sometimes have of Santa.  Erskine’s hairdresser and the co

Holiday depression is a real phenomenon for some South Carolinians.
Tut Underwood/SC Public Radio

Cries of “Merry Christmas,” “Happy Hanukkah” or “Happy New Year” can ring hollow for those afflicted with the phenomenon known as holiday depression.  Psychologist Fred Medway says holidays are so charged with memories that if one experiences, for example, a loss or other unhappy event during the holiday season, it can trigger sad memories in future seasons.   According to University of South Carolina nursing professor Sue Heiney, symptoms of holiday depression can include sleeplessness, change in appetite, sadness and not being able to enjoy anything, even things a person once took pleasu

StoryCorps: Separated as Teens, Reunited After Decades

Dec 9, 2016
StoryCorps

Every day at StoryCorps booths across the country, ordinary people share extraordinary stories with friends and loved ones.  At the mobile booth in Columbia, high school sweethearts and current partners Ted Brooks and Jeanne Porter Ashley sat down to talk about their relationship, which began nearly 50 years ago.

StoryCorps will be recording in Columbia from November 17 to December 19. To make a reservation call 1-800-850-4406.

Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, Dec. 7, 1941. A small boat rescues a seaman from the 31,800 ton USS West Virginia burning in the foreground. Smoke rolling out amidships shows where the most extensive damage occurred. Note the two men in the superstructure.
Library of Congress/U.S. Navy, Office of Public Relations, Washington.

The Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7, 1941 brought the United States into World War II.  The Commander in Chief of the U.S. Fleet, Admiral Husband E. Kimmel, was blamed for the defeat, demoted for dereliction of duty and forced into retirement, along with his army counterpart, Gen. Walter Short.  In 1944, the first of 10 investigations and hearings into the Pearl Harbor defeat effectively exonerated Kimmel, but his rank was not restored because the war was on.   

The world's hottest pepper- the Carolina Reaper, grown in Fort Mill.
Tut Underwood/ SC Public Radio

Many people distinguish themselves in the worlds of sports, entertainment, writing and other endeavors.  Ed Currie of Fort Mill has distinguished himself in a much hotter manner:  he holds the Guinness world record for the hottest pepper on earth, his self-developed Carolina Reaper.  He grows many varieties of peppers for the food industry, but it’s the Reaper that makes some hot-sauce aficionados rethink how tough they are.  In addition to setting people’s insides on fire, however, Currie says the pepper has other uses in the paint, medical and defense industries.

StoryCorps: A Lawyer's Civils Rights Fight

Nov 30, 2016

StoryCorps is a unique oral history project that collects the voices of our times. Recently, friends and law partners Nekki Shutt and Malissa Burnette sat down to talk about their lives and careers, including their fight to bring marriage equality to South Carolina. Here, Nekki asks Malissa how she first became passionate about issues like Civil Rights.

StoryCorps will be recording in Columbia from November 17 to December 19. To make a reservation call 1-800-850-4406.

Each of these silver spoons has a story to tell, and Dawn Corley knows them all.
Tut Underwood/ SC Public Radio

Dawn Corley of Charleston began collecting silver as a child under the tutelage of her great aunt.  As her collection grew, so did her expertise, until SCETV’s Beryl Dakers dubbed her the “Charleston Silver Lady,” a nickname which has stuck over the years.  Corley has presented programs on silver for U.S.

These Narragansett turkeys are raised by University of South Carolina professor Joe Jones.  Though he keeps his flock small, the quality of the meat is far superior to mass produced turkeys.
Tut Underwood/ SC Public Radio

From 9 to 5, Joe Jones of Blythewood is a professor of marine science and environmental science at the University of South Carolina.  After 5, he becomes a farmer, raising sheep, pigs, chickens, and especially Narragansett turkeys, which makes him popular around Thanksgiving.   He and his wife keep their flock small, preferring quality over quantity.  Jones and his wife Amanda talk in this story about the difference between homegrown birds and the corporate, mass-produced turkeys most people consume (hint: price and flavor have a lot to do with the difference).  There are challenges to rais

  Many people are fearful of a Zika virus epidemic because of the publicity the virus has received.  But South Carolina law enforcement officers are fighting a much-less-publicized epidemic – the growth of heroin addiction.  This problem, however, is largely rampant among middle class users, according to Frank Shaheen, director of the Recovering Professional Program.  

Pages