Volume 4 Issue 3
Archdale Hall History
In the last newsletter we wrote about some of the history of the Baker family. The Baker's are the original owners and inhabitants of Archdale Hall and plantation. Thanks to family records that were preserved, much is known about the family from the late 1600's until the last descendant sold the property in the late 1960's. What isn't well known is the history and many stories of the slaves who lived and worked the Archdale Plantation. In the 1700's and 1800's, the plantation raised first rice, then indigo. While the Baker family wasn't exactly rich, they did have a modest size plantation, and owned 13 slaves at the close of the civil war. The job of working the fields a.'1d clearing the land was not an easy one. Those residents who participated in recently working on clearing the land surrounding the plantation ruins can attest to that fact. Even with the convenience of chain saws, wood chippers, and various power tools, the task of clearing land is enormous. One can only imagine how much harder it must have been without all those modem conveniences. Then there is the added problem of heat. We were able to stop for the summer, whereas plantation work continued unabated throughout the growing season. The names of the slaves are mostly unknown, as are their stories. We do know that immediately adjacent to the home, on Mansfield Boulevard, lies the remnants of what archeologists believed to be a small slave hospital. The brick remnants of the building were covered by the homes that currently occupy that area. This would not have been a hospital in the modem sense, but rather a small outbuilding where basic medical care could be rendered to the plantation workers. A recent episode of the Antique Roadshow featured a young man who, 10 years ago discovered 2 metal slave tags in the Summerville area. Those tags are now valued at between $3000-5000 as museum collectibles. Who knows what historical treasures may be lurking in your own backyards!
Plantation Marker Fund
Thanks to Lloyds Landscaping supplies for their donation towards the Archdale Plantation historical marking. Their donation brings the total up to $250. If you have a business and would like to contribute, please send a check to the ACA designating the check to go towards the historical marker.
It's time again for the annual school supply drive. Let's keep the can at the front entrance full of school supplies (paper, pens, pencils, binders, notebooks, etc. ) and help those who are less fortunate.
Maintenance Fund By Jim Lantry, Treasurer
Many of you received maintenance fund notices in the mail this spring. The response to those mailings has been encouraging. We have now surpassed the 50% mark and are closing in on 60%. PLEASE keep those checks coming! My personal goal has always been a minimum of 75%, even though I think that there is no reason why we shouldn't be able to get 100% participation. To those of you who received a notice by mistake, I offer a thousand apologies! The task of printing 1000 envelopes, 500 postcards, and 500 labels, proved difficult. We have a very low tech system for preparing those notices. It involves removing a label with the payees address when the payment is received, leaving only those labels of the people who have not donated. This system relies entirely on the skill of the label peeler (me), and unfortunately a few people who had paid received a notice. While we are talking about the maintenance fund, let me say a few words to a handful of Archdale residents who paid extra. Some actually paid double for those neighbors who do not pay. THANK YOU!!
Please visit the Archdale website at the address listed below. It's full of useful information including copies of the restrictive covenants and maps of Archdale streets. The web address is: www.geocities.com/archdale_civic (That is www.geocities.com/archdale"underscore"civic)
Watch Those Squirrels!
An Archdale resident have reported seeing several young drivers making sport out of trying to run over our squirrels. Please be careful around all our wildlife. Our poor confused squirrels have a hard enough time deciding whether to stop or go without the added risk of becoming intentional roadkill. . . .
The flowers at the front entrance have been having a rough time this year. Many plants have died, and a few others look like they are on life support. Most of the dead plants have been replaced, in an effort to keep the entrance presentable. Several residents have reported similar experiences with this plant this year. Vinca were chosen for their color and, more importantly, their hardiness. The exceptionally dry, hot weather may have been a little too much for them this year.
This summer, several important issues have cropped up where information needed to be disseminated on short notice. If you would like to be kept abreast of current business involving the Dorchester Road corridor and any other pertinent info (including reminders of ACA general meetings), please send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
There continues to be quite a few boats and trailers parked in violation of the restrictive covenants. If you are new to Archdale or want to see exactly what your covenants permit, please check the Archdale website. Also it has been reported that several homes in Archdale have garage doors in need of serious repair. If your garage door has holes in it or will not close. please fix it. Dorchester County Code enforcement has cited residents in the past as an open door to a home presents a haven for rodents and is a potential health hazard.
What You're Saying
The comments over the last few months have been a mixed bag of positive and negative feedback. Two residents wrote to complain about the lack of flowers at the Oaks of Archdale sign. We did not plant flowers at that sign last fall, in an effort to save money. We are planning to do so this year. That does bring up a recurring problem however. There are two things that continually limit how much the civic association can do. . . money and volunteers. It seems that we always have a shortage of both! One resident wrote to complain about people who walk their dogs but don't clean up after them. This is a recurring problem. If you own a pet, take responsibility for it! One resident wrote complaining about the thermometer on the boulevard. I personally would prefer that we never have to use a thermometer, but it is a constant reminder that we're still not collecting donations form nearly enough residents. Another resident wrote to thank the folks on Old Saybrook who were responsible for lining the street with flags on July 4th. Excellent idea! 2 people wrote thanking the association volunteers for their time and effort.
The next boulevard clean-up is scheduled for Saturday, Oct 7th at 9am. Meet at the front entrance. This year we are planning the following: pinestraw for the trees in the center of the boulevard; tree limb pruning; tree planting; planting fall flowers; and the kick-off of the plantation clean-up. We will start by burning the debris from last year and working towards clearing more of the grounds surrounding the foundation.
Jane Singletary, the newspaper delivery person for Archdale, was recently diagnosed with NonHodgkins Lymphoma. Jane's daughter, Perri Hurst is an Archdale resident and has set up a fund in her mothers name at First Federal. As an independent contractor, she does not participate in the Post and Courier's group health insurance plan, and is thus uninsured. Her chemotherapy treatments cost $1800 each, and she will be requiring quite a few of them in order to beat this disease. Please help if you can. Send contributions to: First Federal of Charleston, 8450 Dorchester Rd, North Charleston, 29420. Make checks payable to: Jane Singletary Fund, Acct #1805009261. As a sidenote, Perri has been delivering the papers for her mom, and asks that you please be sure that your house number is clearly marked on the mailbox.
We currently have at least 2 openings on the civic association board, with more openings coming soon with the transfer of 1st Vice President Mark Mellinger. Steve Hurley was gracious enough to volunteer to take the job of president this year, only because no one else was willing to do it. It's time for some new members of the community to step up and volunteer. As I said earlier, nothing gets done without the work of volunteers.