African connection is heritage element of coastal regions of South Carolina
1. What are the elements of narrative of African heritage?
a. Rice — planters sought slaves from rice areas of Africa
b. Slaves knew planting cycle and tool assemblage of rice.
b. Work force was almost totally African American
c. Use of plants native to both the Sea Islands and Africa.
2. The culture of work before emancipation
a. Work baskets, feed baskets and fanner baskets
b. Black rush, split oak, or palmetto butt.
3. The culture of work in market vegetables
a. Head baskets, totes. Evolved forms from earlier baskets
4. Show baskets, sweetgrass, palm leaf not the palm butt at about
a. new shapes –bread trays, table mats, hat box baskets, pocketbooks, clothes hampers, picnic baskets, etc.
b. Hard times in the late 19th century
(1) Use of natural materials
(2) The idea of the commons
c. The Sea Grass Basket Company, Clarence Legerton, 1916
(1) White jobber, an entrepreneur middle man.
(2) Mark up increased to 92%
(3) Size and shape change: Legerton made specific requests for baskets he would buy, or would supply colored thread to be woven into the baskets.
Promotion of Charleston as tourism destination
1. Illustrations – Alice Ravenel Huger Smith
2. Antebellum houses, Alfred Stoney and Bayard Wootten
3. Street vendors
Promotion of handicraft
1. Penn School, the importance of tradition in marketing handcraft of African-Americans. Tuskegee model of economic improvement.
1930 the opening of the Cooper River Bridge.
1. Women began to sell by the side of the road. Unwilling to sell at wholesale, rather not sell.
2. No need to purchase license to sell.
3. Greater desire to make individually distinct shapes.
1982 Mary Jane Manigault receives a National Folk Heritage award for her basketry. In the tradition.
1. Mary Jackson developed new markets and means for making her basketry distinctive and sold as art.
How are the events leading to a vibrant market for Charleston basketmakers distinct from Native Americans selling at The Portal?
1. No assertion of government control, nor support.
2. Individual artists (or artistic traditions in families) were the principal stimulus for point of sale.
3. Rejected the commercial model of retailing.