As development races ahead, so do efforts to save African-American settlement communities | News

MOUNT PLEASANT — After the Civil War and Reconstruction, newly freed slaves and their descendants settled into dozens of new communities around Charleston, and most of these communities still exist today, at least in part.

But for how long?

The region’s surging population, rising land prices and development pressures are posing a huge challenge to these communities: A 2007 study done by Clemson University Landscape Architecture students found some had already gone, such as the Two Mile Community here.

Nearly 95 percent of the rest could be consumed by sprawl if nothing changes.

There is new hope.

A nonprofit, the African American Settlement Community Historic Commission, is gearing up to advocate…

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