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1783-1860: Antebellum Charleston

1783 – (August 13) This date marks the incorporation of the city, and the official adoption of the name Charleston.

1785 – (March 19) Assembly grants charter for the College of Charleston.

1786 – The South Carolina state capital is moved from Charleston to Columbia.

1786 – Development of Radcliffeborough neighborhood

1787 – (May) A Constitutional Draft for the Convention in Philadelphia is prepared by Charles Pinckney.

1787 – (Sept 17) South Carolina delegates Pierce Butler, Charles Pinckney, John Rutledge, and Charles C. Pinckney sign the U.S. Constitution.

1790 – To see an illustration of Charleston in 1790, click here.

1791 – (May 2) President George Washington arrives in Charleston for a week's visit. His itinerary includes lodging at the Daniel Heyward House (87 Church St.), a reception at the Old Exchange, and a social evening at McCrady's Longroom (153 East Bay).

1799 – (Dec 21) The Charleston Water Works, the city's first public utility, is established to bring water from Goose Creek.

1804 – (Sept 7) Hurricane of 1804.

1818Samuel F. B. Morse, inventor of the telegraph, arrives in Charleston to begin a printing business.

1820 – Charleston's population estimated to be 23,300.

1822 – (May) The alleged slave uprising of Denmark Vesey is revealed to authorities.

1822 – (July 2) Denmark Vesey and five associates are hanged.

1824 – A group of members of Kahal Kadosh Beth Elohim form the Reform Society of Israelites, making Beth Elohim the recognized birthplace of Reform Judaism in the United States.

1824 – Founding of the Medical College of South Carolina, the first medical school in the South (today named the Medical Univerity of S. C.).

1828-29 – A young Army recruit named Edgar Allan Poe is stationed at Ft. Moultrie on Sullivan's Island for a year. Later sets his first published story, The Gold Bug, on Sullivan's Island, incorporating coastal Carolina pirate lore.

1830 – (Dec 25) The first steam locomotive in America to pull passengers in regular service, The Best Friend, begins its route between Charleston and Hamburg SC.

1831 – (Oct 16) John James Audubon arrives in Charleston to work on his Birds of America.

1835 – To see an illustration of Charleston in 1835, click here.

1838 – (Jan 30) Osceola, Chief of the Seminoles, dies during imprisonment at Ft. Moultrie.

1838 – Terrible fire destroys much of Ansonborough.

1843 – (March 20) The Citadel opens for its first class of cadets.

1851 – Renowned scientist Dr. Louis Agassiz comes to Charleston to teach at the Medical College of S.C. and establishes a seaside laboratory on Sullivan's Island to study the flora and fauna of the Atlantic Ocean.

1852 – To see an illustration of Charleston in 1852, click here.