Welcome to

Above Calhoun Tours

Presented by Charleston Cavalier Tours

 

The weight of history enlightens us.*

*Hat tip Lord Acton: History is not a burden on the memory but an illumination of the soul.

Exploring history through multiple voices from the past broadens our personal frames of reference andincreases our capacity for understanding. We recount past lives paying homage to the unremembered…

Memory is a force, to touch the unremembered is to empower yourself. History from the ground up highlights everyday heroes and expands our personal sense of the heroic. Our guides take a broad perspective to Charleston’s history. We focus on individual stories and their place in the wider national and global context across time. Our goal is to provide great value to your tour experience

We make history engaging, stimulating and captivating. Varied perspectives from multiple viewpoints is a guiding philosophy for our registered Charleston guides. They are enthusiastic about sharing Charleston’s history to stimulate, and perhaps challenge your understanding of our shared history.

“History, as nearly no one seems to know, is not merely something to be read. And it does not refer merely, or even principally, to the past. On the contrary, the great force of history comes from the fact that we carry it within us, are unconsciously controlled by it in many ways, and history is literally present in all that we do.” – James Baldwin (1965).

Cost & Included Benefits

We appreciate your interest in our tours and programs. We are proud to provide a unique perspective and stories of Charleston, South Carolina. 

All tours $25 for a 1.5-hour walking history tour with a registered Charleston tour expert.

Price includes an admission ticket to one of three sites, either the Charleston Museum, the Heyward Washington House or the Joseph Manigault house. It is part of our commitment to provide multiple pathways to experiencing history. .Your guide will present your ticket at the end of your tour.

Black, white and Free Persons of Color Charlestonians lived Above Calhoun Street. Our historical walking tours in the areas around Upper King Street are filled with important people and places of African-American history. Railroads and industry transformed the landscape into a ‘ new city’.  The working men and women labored within a growing urban metropolis, far different from the older, traditional port city. Merchant-planters laid out new lands for wood houses and churches above Boundary Street. Each one of these neighborhood has its own charm, architectural treasures, and personalities. By the 1850’s the were annexed by Charleston as the street was named Calhoun.. Each one of these neighborhood has its own charm, architectural treasures, and personalities

Read our tour descriptions to a historical neighborhood tour that best fits your personal historical interests.

Each burrough, on the area commonly known as ‘The Neck’ has its own unique character, essence, and style. All of our tours provide a broad overview of the history of Charleston above Calhoun Street. However, each specific tour area has a particular focus, primarily from the stories of their residents. Each tour provides a little more historical insight of a specific area of interest, while still engaging you with historical context and overview. Each historic neighborhood has its own charm, architectural treasures, and local history. In many ways, each of these ‘burroughs’ is a small city unto itself, with its own charm and character. 

Read our tour descriptions for to select a particular style of tour that best fits your personal historical interests.

Available Tours

Radcliffeburough

“The Charleston History Tour”

Booms and panics, merchants and mechanics, southern railroads and mosquito fleets are revealed in the stories of the men and women in this diverse neighborhood. A good general history tour of the Upper Peninsula across the 19th Century. Tour starts at Kudu Coffee, 4 Vanderhorst, off King Street, near Marion Square.

Elliotborough

“The Women’s History Tour”

This tour focuses on the white, free persons of color and black women that lived in the nearby area. It primarily covers the lives of women in the upper part of Charleston. This dynamic and diverse neighborhood provides the opportunity to change the perspective on Charleston history in many ways. Tour starts at Kudu Coffee, 4 Vanderhorst, off King Street, near Marion Square.

Cannonborough

“The Enterprise Tour”

The area of professionals of all stripes. Mills, colleges, arsenals, and hospitals. Explore parts of Ashley and Rutledge Avenue. A look at Charleston’s enterprising spirit from trade to medicine. Active and vibrant as the Ashley River with unique insights into Charleston. This tour begins at the small park at Calhoun and Ashley Avenue. There is a stop for the 213 Carta Dash Bus here.

Mazyck-Wraggborough

“The Contemplative Spiritual Tour”

The oak-covered streets make this a great afternoon tour in this quiet and serene, beautiful neighborhood. Lovely villas, grist mills, corner groceries, and Dereef Wharf. This tour concludes with a discussion of four important churches of Charleston, including the Mother Emanuel Church. Tour starts at Kudu Coffee, 4 Vanderhorst, off King Street, near Marion Square.

Hampstead Mall/Eastside

“Craftsmen, Laborers and industry Tour”

Factories and the lives of laborers lie within this area surrounded by grand houses built along the Cooper River. This is life between the tracks, merchants and mechanics, black craftsmen and German shopkeepers. This tour begins and ends at the Phillip Simmons house, with a tour of his home and a discussion of his gates and legacy.

Cost & Included Benefits

We appreciate your interest in our tours and programs. We are proud to provide a unique perspective and stories of Charleston, South Carolina. 

All tours $25 for a 1.5-hour walking history tour with a registered Charleston tour expert.

Price includes an admission ticket to one of three sites, either the Charleston Museum, the Heyward Washington House or the Joseph Manigault house. It is part of our commitment to provide multiple pathways to experiencing history. .Your guide will present your ticket at the end of your tour.

Charleston’s history is dynamic and diverse. It is black, white and includes free persons of color. They all have played important roles in her maintenance, her institutions, and her culture. Enslaved agricultural labor enabled the accumulation of vast wealth which was the foundation of her economic success. Above Calhoun street, Charleston confronted the many changes of the 19th century and the challenges of the 20th. These neighborhoods were filled with everyday heroes working through the tumultuous forces that shaped our country and ourselves. Above Calhoun Street was a working, industrial city of mills, foundries, and factories. Movers and shakers of all races took on entrepreneurial adventures, built factories and organized professions. This is where folks like butchers, bakers and candlestick makers made history. These neighborhoods provide a unique view of how women of all races were essential to the endurance and life of Charleston. They offer key insights into African-American history from the enslaved to key black Charlestonian leaders, educators and legislators. In addition, Charleston was one of the most prominent locations for Free Persons of Color in South Carolina and their stories reveal the rich complexity of urban life in growing Charleston. Come join us to hear these diverse and important stories from the upper burroughs of the Holy City.

The Upper King area of Charleston is filled with a great variety of historical voices and viewpoints. The residents of these burroughs challenged and inspired the Holy City. The late 18th century, merchant planters bestowed their names and laid out plots and streets in the tidal marshes above Boundary Street. They were planned as high-end suburbs by their namesake founders. It soon became the home of industry, technology, mills and factories and residential developments.  Here, black and white barged forward into the 19th century. This was the ‘new city’ of Charleston confronting the past and creating the future. Political and social forces transformed the city.  New technologies and financial panics challenged the foundations of this world. These Upper Wards provide particular rich insight into the triumphs and struggles in the late 19th century and beyond. Key individuals fought for changed labor conditions, social advancement and civil rights here. Join one of our tour guides to discover the inventive and industrious, working class spirit of all her citizens

Choose a tour that meets your personal interests and discover a new perspective and alternative view of Charleston’s past.

The upper part of the Charleston peninsula was a prime location for Charleston’s black population across the 20th century. It is filled with African American history. Men and women, churches and businesses strove to maintain their communities and sought equality in the workplace and civic life. Municipal leaders and businessmen tried to enhance the city while struggling with the legacy of the past. Their rich and complex history is often overlooked and forgotten. It is a significant part of the city’s history and our national awareness. The shared memory of our past is powerful, challenging and empowering, especially from this most important and historic of American cities. Please select a tour and join us on a historical walking tour.

 

SPECIAL PROGRAM Tours

We also work to coordinate our walking tours with special programs for educational or corporate groups to enhance your experience in Charleston.

You can also email us direct on:
Info@CharlestonCavalierTours.com

Special Programs

“A customized tour”

Contact one of our custom tour program representatives for a free 30-minute consultation. We will discuss our educational package designed for school groups or corporate outings. Our primary offering is a historic walking tour with a registered tour guide, admission to the Charleston Museum, and a sit-down museum program. The program will be specific to your particular historical interest or curriculum.

Choose a time below or email us at info@charlestoncavaliertours.com.

We appreciate your feedback that allows us to improve our services even better.