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2017 Program

We look forward to welcoming you to the 2017 Charleston Heritage Symposium. Limited to 80 patrons, the Symposium offers a delightful spring weekend in this historic South Carolina seaport renowned for its landmark buildings, magnificent homes and gracious hospitality.

Join us as we examine some of the family collections and various English, West Indies and Colonial connections that inspired Charleston life, artisans, and architecture. We will visit two period Charleston homes opened by the owners for the Symposium.

This year, we are honored to welcome John A. Hays, Deputy Chairman Christie’s Americas, as the Keynote Speaker on Friday evening.  

As the Charleston Heritage Symposium was rescheduled due to the October 2016 Hurricane Matthew, tickets are sold out. However a few cancellations have occurred. Please contact us to be placed on the waiting list. The 2017 Symposium is paired with an exclusive and very limited Preservation Society of Charleston tour of 3 private homes on Church Street Friday March 10, providing further opportunities to experience our city's rich layers of history.

FRIDAY, MARCH 10, 2017

12:00-3:00 p.m.
Optional Offering – Church Street Tour of Homes,
The Preservation Society of Charleston offers to Charleston Heritage Symposium patrons, only, visits to private properties on Church Street that are rarely open to the public. Registration is limited to 20 patrons. Contact 800-770-1817 or info@CharlestonHeritageSymposium.org for more details.

4:00 – 5:00 p.m.
Coloring Outside the Lines: Planning with Art & Collectibles
Ramsay H. Slugg, Managing Director, US Trust

5:00-6:30 p.m.
Symposium Registration and Opening Night Reception:
Old Federal Court Room, 23 Chalmers Street
Built in the early 19th-century, the building housed the U.S. District Court from 1845 to 1860 before becoming part of the Confederate Home and College property in 1867.

6:30-7:30 p.m.
Lost and Found: American Art Rediscovered
Keynote Address
John A. Hays
, Deputy Chairman, Christie’s Americas
New York, NY


Introduction by Symposium Moderator and Curator-in-Residence
Robert A. Leath, Chief Curator and Vice President of Collections and Research, Museum of Early Southern Decorative Arts at Old Salem,
Winston-Salem, NC


8:30 a.m.
Coffee Service: Old Federal Court Room, 23 Chalmers Street 

9:00-9:15 a.m.
Welcoming Remarks
Kristopher B. King
Executive Director, Preservation Society of Charleston, Charleston, SC

9:15-10:15 a.m.
Interwoven Connections – Charleston, Newport, and the West Indies
Brandy S. Culp
Richard Koopman Curator of American Decorative Arts, Wadsworth Atheneum, Hartford, CT

10:30-11:30 a.m.
The Charleston Single House in Atlantic Context
Louis P. Nelson, Ph.D.
Professor Architectural History, University of Virginia

11:45 a.m.-12:45 p.m.
Under the Microscope:  Discovering Hidden Paint and Wallpaper
Treasures in Charleston Buildings
 Susan L. Buck, Ph.D.
 Conservator and Paint Analyst
 Lecturer, Winterthur/University of Delaware Graduate Program    
 in Art Conservation

12:45-2:15 p.m.
Midday Break
Box lunches are being provided 
Old Federal Court Room, 23 Chalmers Street

2:15-3:15 p.m.
Striking a Chord: Looting of the Civil War Plantation
Dana E. Byrd, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Art History, Bowdoin College

3:30-4:30 p.m.
Reimagining a Lost Collection: The Middleton Family’s Collections Lost and Found
George H. McNeely
Architectural Historian, New York, NY

6:30-8:30 p.m.
Evening Soirée at the William Rhett House (c. 1712) 
The. Col. William Rhett House, constructed 1712-28 is considered to be one of the oldest houses in Charleston. Constructed outside of the original walled city, it was part of Point Plantation, owned by New England émigré Jonathan Amory. Col. William Rhett, a leading merchant most famed for the capture of pirate Stede Bonnet, purchased the 20 plus acre site, renamed it "Rhettsbury", and erected the current edifice by 1728. Containing early period details, later 18th Century Rococo ornament and Adamesque woodwork, the present day house and garden, designed by noted landscape architects Innocenti & Webel, affords one of the finest historic settings in Charleston, still in private ownership.

SUNDAY, MARCH 12, 2017

10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.
Behind-the-Scenes Tour of The Charles Elliot House (c. 1759)
The Charles Elliott House is a stunning example of beautiful Charleston single house architecture. This classic single Charleston house is in the process of restoration by a private owner. The renovation architect, Richard Marks; along with Louis Nelson, Professor Architectural History, University Virginia; Students from the College of Charleston/Clemson University Historic Preservation program will present their discoveries, thoughts, and notes on the renovation progress.
This special visit includes Bloody Marys and a light brunch.
Shuttles provided to the Charles Elliot House from the Old Federal Court Room.