Sweetgrass Baskets Program at Penn Center Apr. 15th

The Beaufort County Historical Society, in collaboration with Penn Center on St. Helena Island, will present a program featuring Dale Rosengarten of the College of Charleston, and Mt. Pleasant sweetgrass basket maker, Nakia Wigfall, at High Noon (12 pm) on April 15th.

The slide lecture and demonstration, to be held at Penn Center, will highlight the living heritage of sweetgrass baskets and publicize a landmark exhibition, Grass Roots: African Origins of an American Art, on display in Columbia at the University of South Carolina’s McKissick Museum, until May 8, 2010.

A light lunch will be available at 11:30 for $10. RSVP to BCHS President, Pamela Ovens sail@singlestar.us or call 843-785-2767.

If this presentation whets your appetite to learn more about "Sweetgrass Baskets," you have additional opportunities to learn more:

1) Historic Beaufort Foundation -- On April 26th “The Sweetgrass Basket Community: The Baskets, The People, The Landscape” will be presented by Clemson University professor of landscape architecture Cari Goetcheus. Goetcheus and two College of Charleston professors conducted a study of the sweetgrass basket makers outside the Charleston city limits, including along Route 17 in Mount Pleasant, to shed more light “on the Lowcountry basket community, the process of living, gathering, sewing and selling,” said Goetcheus. Contact Maxine F. Lutz at 379-3331 for more information, fees and reservations. Seating is limited.

2) The BDC is co-sponsoring sweetgrass basket making demonstrations as part of the Children's Summer Reading Program during June and July. Free. Specific dates TBA.

3) We have a Sweetgrass Baskets article by Dennis Adams, Information Services Coordinator, on our Library website. Reading this article will provide solid background information about the place of sweetgrass basketry in Gullah culture.

Just in case you want to check out other online content that we provide: The third blue tab "Local History" on our Library homepage has other local history and nature articles accessible through the drop down box. Explore this segment of the "Virtual BDC" from your home or office computer at your convenience.

About the Author

Grace Cordial has been responsible for the day-to-day operation of the Beaufort District Collection at the Beaufort County Library since 1999.  The Beaufort District Collection exists to acquire, preserve, maintain and make accessible a research collection of permanent value which records the history, culture, and environment of our part of the South Carolina lowcountry.  Besides the research room, Cordial manages the “Virtual BDC:” the BDC web pages, the Online Obituary Index, two digital collections, a new BDC.BCL Facebook page, and the Connections blog.  
Among her duties is to coordinate or present programs about local history, Gullah culture, and our coastal environment, including occasional instructional sessions about how to perform historical and/or genealogical research.