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King Street (136-220)

From Broad to Market

136 King St.
Site of the Quaker Meeting House, now the Charleston County Parking Garage. Three Quaker meeting houses, the last one destroyed by the 1861 fire, stood on this site. The property was deeded to the Society of Friends by Gov. John Archdale, who was Quaker. Mary Fisher, who tried to convert the "Great Turk" (Sultan Muhammed v or his vizier Mohammed Kuiprili) in 1660, and suffered persecution as a Quaker missionary in Barbados and New England, arrived in Charlestown about 1680 with her husband John Cross and her children. She remained here until her death 18 years later, living quietly, compared with her previous life, and was buried in the Quaker Church yard here. Also buried here was Daniel Latham, who rode on horseback to take the news of the Patriot victory at Fort Moultrie to the Continental Congress. His remains were moved in 1975 to the park adjacent to the County Office Building on Court House Square. The property remained in the ownership of the Society of Friends until purchased by the County of Charleston. The parking garage was built in two stages in 1970 and in 1975. The County has preserved the iron fence which enclosed the Quaker churchyard. (Smith, "Hog lsland and Shute's Folly'"; Rogers, Charleston in the Age of the Pinckneys , p.93; Bull, "Quaker Burying Ground"; Charleston Evening Post, March 20, 1967; Childs, DYKYC, Feb. 27,1967)

147-149 King St.
Ernst J. Hesse (1841-1901), a prosperous merchant of German birth, built this three story brick double building between 1878 and 1880. Hess immigrated to Walhalla, S.C. at the age of 13 and came to Charleston in 1860 to engage in the grocer business. During the Civil War he served in the German Hussars of Charleston. After the war, he reentered business with J.N. Hesse at Beaufain and Pitt Streets. He purchased this site in 1878 and built this building with two stores below and two residences above. The building is conservative in design for its time, but shows a great deal of attention to detail in the granite sills and lintels and dressy brickwork. (Stockton, unpub. notes.)

150-154 King St.
Patrick J. Coogan built these three stores with residences above in 1868. Nicholas Culliton was the contractor. The iron storefronts were made by James F. Taylor & Co. of Charleston. Coogan was the city assessor and later city treasurer. The property remained in his family until 1885. (Stockton, unpub. MS.)

158-160 King St.
The Carolina Rifles Armory, built in 1889. The Carolina Rifles was one of many semi-private military units -- half militia and half social club -- which existed in Charleston until absorbed by the National Guard in the early 20th century. The unit was organized in 1869 as the Carolina Rifle Club because local military units were banned. The Confederate veterans, not trusting Federal troops to maintain order, formed such clubs. After the Federal troops were withdrawn in 1878, the clubs became military units. At the time of purchasing this site in 1888, the unit had 76 men armed with Springfield rifles. Dates in the parapet are those of the unit's organization and the construction of the building. A subsequent owner, H. A. Schroeder, also put his name on the parapet. The two story wooden building with flat roof has pressed metal cladding on the second level of the facade. The building had two stores, with the armory on the second level. (Stockton, DYKYC, Dec. 19,1977.)

159 King St.
This two story brick building in the crenellated Gothic style was built in 1866 by George W. Flach, a German jeweler, who operated his shop on the first level and lived upstairs until his death in 1877. (Stockton, DYKYC, Sept. 22,1975.)