St. Philips Episcopal Church

A historical treasure!

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Added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1973, St. Philips Episcopal Church on Church Street has also been designated a National Historic Landmark. The congregation was established in 1681 and continues as the oldest congregation in South Carolina. Work on the present-day church structure began in 1835 after the previous church burned to the ground. With three Tuscan pedimented porticos, this stuccoed brick church with an imposing tower was built in the Wren-Gibbs tradition. St. Philips extends into Church Street, following the practice of parish churches in England.

Of note to examine are the Roman columns and entablatures as well as high Corinthian arcades and a Chancel. The steeple is magnificent and the craftsmanship in the sanctuary will make you sigh.

The graveyards of St. Phillips are an interesting place to explore and are literally divided by the sanctuary and Church Street. Originally, the western yard was built for strangers and transients.  Look among the stones and you can find the graves of Edward Rutledge, a signer of the Declaration of Independence, and Dubose Heyward, author of Porgy and Bess.

You will definitely want your camera as this particular view of Church Street where St. Philips literally divides the street is the most photographed spot in Charleston.

At A Glance

142 Church Street
Charleston South Carolina 29401


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