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“C” is for Circular Congregational Church

South Carolina from A to Z logo

  “C” is for Circular Congregational Church [Charleston]. The first meeting house for Dissenters [non-Anglicans] was built in 1681 and gave Meeting Street its name. A second church was erected in 1732. By 1802, the church’s membership had outgrown the building and a third edifice—this one designed by Robert Mills—was completed in 1806. It was noted for its circular design. The great fire of 1861 left only brick walls standing. For decades the congregation worshipped in borrowed space. The present Circular Congregational Church, dedicated in 1892 is the fourth house of worship on the site at 150 Meeting Street. Its Richardsonian Romanesque style reflects Charleston’s tradition of adopting architectural fashion for ecclesiastical buildings, despite the city’s famous conservatism in residential design. The Circular Congregational Church was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1973.

Dr. Walter Edgar has two programs on South Carolina Public Radio: Walter Edgar's Journal, and South Carolina from A to Z. Dr. Edgar receivedhisA.B.degreefromDavidson College in 1965 and his Ph.D. from the University of South Carolina in 1969. After two years in the army (including a tour of duty in Vietnam), he returned to USC as a post-doctoral fellow of the National Archives, assigned to the Papers of Henry Laurens.