Historic Camden is celebrating a new permanent exhibit at its campus, 222 Broad St., Camden, on Saturday, March 9 at 11 a.m. next to the Kershaw-Cornwallis House. The site will unveil the renovated Southeast Redoubt and preserved 18th century 6-pound British cannon mounting -- the culmination of a “Connected Communities” grant project funded by the Central Carolina Community Foundation (CCCF). There will be a ribbon-cutting with speakers, lunch will be provided, and the Kershaw-Cornwallis House will be open after the ceremony. The community is invited to attend this free unveiling ceremony.
There will also be a a free tour of the Camden Battlefield and Longleaf Pine Preserve, on Flat Rock Road, 8 miles north of Camden, at 1:15 p.m.
“Historic Camden has been working on the Southeast Redoubt revitalization project in phases since 2016,” Historic Camden Executive Director Halie Brazier said in a press release. “With the grant from the Central Carolina Community Foundation, we were able to invest in re-routing the road at the redoubt, cleaning and preserving the cannon, and purchasing building materials to make the redoubt more authentic.”
A redoubt is an enclosed defensive emplacement outside of a large, prominent point. During the occupation of Camden from 1780-81, the British built five redoubts (and a jail or “gaol”) surrounding the walled town. In October of 1780, British engineering officer Col. James Moncrief wrote, “I have ordered freemen and materials to be got ready for four or five redoubts with an 18 pounder cannonade in each.” The current Southeast Redoubt was built after archaeological digs in the 1960s, and is on a different location to the original fortification. The Northeast Redoubt is on Bull Street and still exists, but the others on the western side of Broad Street have been built over.
“We are grateful for our volunteers and donors who have made this project possible,” Brazier said. “Our major donors include the CCCF, Maj. Gen. and Mrs. Julian Burns, in honor of Julian and Helen Burns Sr., who were founders of Historic Camden; Tom and Virginia Ann Mullikin; Van Horn Insurance Agency; Joe and Sandy Shull; Sarah Daniels, in honor of Mary Myers; Ken and Betsy Nowell; and Elliott Davis.
“To complete this gargantuan task, Historic Camden had a number of volunteers who performed many hours of research and manual labor. Thank you to Tom Oblak and the Historic Camden Cannon Crew; board members Tray Dunaway and David Reuwer; Eagle Scout candidate Cameron Duncan and Boy Scout Troop 441; the Lugoff-Elgin JROTC; staff members Elyse Monyette, Denny Methe, and Nathan Brazell; and the Warren Lasch Conservation Center at Clemson University, among others.”
After the public unveiling on March 9, the exhibit will be open to Historic Camden visitors during business hours and is included with general site admission tickets. Historic Camden is open Tuesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Sunday, 1-5 p.m. Visit the Gift Shop for admission tickets or to take a guided tour at 10:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. each day, weather permitting.