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Soon after the founding of Charleston, the community of Presbyterians, dissenters to the Church of England, worshiped together in the White Meeting House, a wooden edifice on Meeting Street. The congregation included English, Irish, Scottish, French Huguenots, and Independent Presbyterians. In 1731, twelve families withdrew from the White Meeting House and established what is now the First (Scots) Presbyterian Church, modeled strictly on the Church of Scotland. This church grew rapidly. By the end of the century the building was inadequate to accommodate the worshippers and the necessity of a second Presbyterian church was realized. In 1809, fifteen men met and began planning for Second Presbyterian Church. The Reverend Andrew Flinn was called to organize the congregation. The church was built at the then substantial cost of $100,000, and on April 3, 1811, was dedicated with the corporate name of "The Second Presbyterian Church of Charleston and Its Suburbs." Property for the church was obtained from the Wragg family, whose name was given to the area still known as Wraggborough. The impressive deed and documents of transfer of the property are displayed in the church narthex.<br />
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Today, the Second Presbyterian Church is the oldest edifice of this denomination in Charleston, and is on the National Register of Historic Places. In 1852 the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church of the United States met in this building. Second Presbyterian Church's minister, Reverend Thomas Smyth, proposed that the Presbyterian Church have a historical association to care for its artifacts and statements of faith. His resolution was passed, forming the Presbyterian Historical Society. The Presbyterian Church of the United States designated Second Presbyterian Church its "Historical Site Number One." Plaques noting this are mounted in the entranceway.
Soon after the founding of Charleston, the community of Presbyterians, dissenters to the Church of England, worshiped together in the White Meeting House, a wooden edifice on Meeting Street. The congregation included English, Irish, Scottish, French Huguenots, and Independent Presbyterians. In 1731, twelve families withdrew from the White Meeting House and established what is now the First (Scots) Presbyterian Church, modeled strictly on the Church of Scotland. This church grew rapidly. By...
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