CHHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD) – The Edisto Island Open Land Trust on Tuesday announced the receipt of a grant from the National Park Service to be used for the restoration of a historic home.
$171,512 will be put towards turning the Hutchinson House into a museum and heritage center.
The home, which according to tradition was built by Henry Hutchinson in 1885, is one of the oldest on Edisto Island.
Hutchinson was the son of a former slave, Jim Hutchinson, who went on to serve in the Union Army, then as the Edisto Island Republican precinct chairman.
In his political duties, Jim Hutchinson “[facilitated] the election of Black legislators and [registered] Black voters in large numbers. He was murdered by a white man from Wadmalaw in 1885, which some people believe was retribution for his activism.
In 1987, the Hutchinson House was added to the National Register of Historic Places. Advocates say it “stands as an important example of the strength and resilience of an African American family,” representing “the craftsmanship and design that African Americans were able to achieve in their own homes once out from under White suppression.”
The home remained in the family until 2016.