Charleston Artist Honors Our Nation's Veterans

20 minutes ago
Mary Whyte painting of "Hank" a World War II Coast Guard Veteran from New Jersey
Victoria Hansen/ SC Public Radio

Charleston artist Mary Whyte secretly scoured the country painting portraits for seven years as part of her latest project, "We the People".  Her ambition is as extraordinary as her subjects; our nation's veterans.

"I really believe our truest Americans really are our veterans," says Whyte.

Known for her watercolor paintings depicting American life, Whyte became part journalist part historian for her latest venture.  She knew she wanted to depict a variety of veterans from each of the 50 states.  But she wasn't exactly sure where to find them.

NPR Live Coverage of the House Impeachment Inquiry

Dec 3, 2019
U.S. Capitol building
Liam James Doyle/NPR

Coverage of the House Judiciary Committee hearings will begin on Wednesday at 10:00 a.m.

Live, streamed video below:

University of South Carolina football team of 1896.
Garnet and Black, 1963; USC/South Caroliniana Library

Every fall, fans of the University of South Carolina and Clemson University square up and begin preparing for one of the oldest rivalry games in southeast college football. For some, it means a bit of good old-fashioned ribbing and jokes that cast the other team in a not-so-flattering light; but for others, the football rivalry goes deeper, sometimes even going as far as dividing family members at the Thanksgiving Day dinner table. But have you ever wondered when, and why this legendary rivalry took root?

Graphic of the U. S. Capitol building
Annette Elizabeth Allen for NPR

The U.S. House of Representatives is holding open hearings in its impeachment inquiry into President Trump. All hearings will be streamed through this video player as they are live.

Hearings start at 09:00 a.m. on Wednesday through Thursday.

Charleston's first poet laureate Marcus Amaker
Marcus Amaker

Charleston's first poet laureate has been called a Renaissance man.  Marcus Amaker boasts many talents.  He's a poet, a musician, a videographer, as well as a graphics and web designer.

But perhaps it's not what he does; instead how he does it, that distinguishes him.

The 43 year-old takes the mic at the Free Verse Poetry Festival he conceived three years ago.  Applause fills the halls of the Gibbes Museum of Art in Charleston, mixed with the hypnotizing beat of drums. Behind the sticks is Quentin Baxter of the chart breaking group Ranky Tanky.

South Carolina Veterans Project Wins National Award

Nov 11, 2019
Trado Mayson and Bernie Shankman
South Carolina Veterans Oral History Collection

On this Veterans Days, students at the University of South Carolina are celebrating a national award they received for recorded conversations they conducted with veterans. The project is called The South Carolina Veterans Oral History Project.  It is a 2019 Oral History Association Elizabeth B. Mason Award winner.

Jan "Satchmo" Satcher displays the muscle she's built fighting Parkinson's Disease through Rock Steady Boxing.
Tut Underwood/SC Public Radio

"You get fit, but you don't get hit."  That's the way David Rispress of 9 Rounds Gym in Forest Acres describes the workout plan for Rock Steady Boxing.  It's a non-contact program of boxing exercises for people with Parkinson's Disease that has seen steady growth since its introduction around 2006. 

Silk flower Chinese lantern display at Magnolia Plantation and Gardens in Charleston
Victoria Hansen

America's oldest gardens will blossom this winter with an ancient Chinese tradition; a lantern festival.

A glowing 20 foot dragon will greet visitors as Magnolia Plantations and Gardens opens at night for the first time since becoming a Charleston tourist attraction in 1870.  The Zigong Lantern Group of China has been busy building more than 20 displays that will illuminate nine acres.

Shea Sanders / Grace Church, Greenville. Used with permission.

Jasmine Road. Think of it as a path towards healing for women who once thought their lives of prostitution and other sex work were normal.

The women who come to Jasmine Road – a Greenville nonprofit that serves as a kind of rehab for mostly city women caught up in the revolving door of the criminal justice system – have had lives that are anything but normal. Most, says founder Beth Messick, began their lives in the sex trade when they were children; often sold in exchange for drugs when they were still single-digit ages.

Often by their mothers.

Six Receive Prestigious Humanities Awards

Oct 30, 2019
2019 SC Humanities Award Winners

Six people across South Carolina recently joined the ranks of recipients of two prestigious state awards; the SC Governor’s Awards in the Humanities and the Fresh Voices in the Humanities Award.

In 1991, SC Humanities started honoring people who have made a career working in the humanities with the Governor’s award. In 2018, the organization started honoring those, just starting to make an impact in the field, with its Fresh Voices award. Executive Director Randy Akers shares what the organization looks for in each year’s winners.

Scott Morgan / South Carolina Public Radio

Doug O'Neal spent 24 years in prison for the murder of a woman police still can't identify. But the evidence against him was so questionable that even the man who helped put him away says he's innocent.

Row of men at the New York City docks out of work during the depression, 1934
National Archives/Lewis Hines

90 years ago, panic gripped the New York Stock Exchange as the stock market crashed on "Black Tuesday," Oct. 29, 1929.  In four days, the market plummeted 25 percent, and investors lost $30 billion - 10 times the federal budget, and more than the United States spent on World War I.  

This 2016 file photo taken on the banks of Lake Hartwell shows the impacts of drought on South Carolina's natural resources.
Clemson University Relations

Despite recent rain across the state the drought continues.  The U.S. Drought Monitor says that almost half of the state is in what it calls a "severe drought."

Leonard Vaughan of the National Weather Service in Columbia says with the exception of coastal counties the rest of the state continues to be very dry. 

Vaughan says the problem is not just this year’s dry summer and fall, but the repeated cycles of drought South Carolina has been experiencing.  Over the past twenty years drought in the state has been significant. 


(Left to right) former State Rep. Lucille Whipper, IAAM Board Chair Wilbur Johnson, Burke student Syasia Coaxum, Congressman James Clyburn, former mayor Joe Riley, Congressman Joe Cunningham, Mayor John Tecklenburg and Freetown Mayor Yvonne Aki-Sawyerr
Victoria Hansen/ SC Public Radio

It's the day former Charleston Mayor Joe Riley has been dreaming of for 20 years; the ground breaking of the new International African American Museum.  He says it all began with a book he read in 1998 called, "Slaves in the Family", written by Edward Ball.

"His book to me was as if a once hidden and locked vault was discovered and opened, " he told a crowd of hundreds Friday at Gadsden's Wharf.

"The secret, most vaulable treasure was long hidden and forbidden truth."

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline logo / National Suicide Prevention Lifeline

Each October and early Novemeber a series of walks called "Out of the Darkness" call attention to the problem of suicide in South Carolina.  Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the state and the nation, but among South Carolina residents aged 15-34, it's the second.  

Helen Pridgen, statewide director of A.F.S.P., the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, said 838 South Carolinians were lost to suicide in 2017, the most recent year from which statistics are available.  She said the most common method of suicide is, as one would suspect, firearms.