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Historic Columbia Announces February 2017 Events

historic cola chili cookoff

Historic Columbia has an exciting calendar of events taking place throughout the month of February – from all you can eat chili at the 19th annual Palladium Society’s Chili Cookoff, to three new volunteer training sessions at the Mann-Simons Site, to  Lunch & Learn Series honoring historical African American figures.


The Art and Politics of Monuments: Revisiting the SC Statehouse Grounds
Tuesday, Feb. 2 | 6 – 7:30 p.m.| Seibels House, 1601 Richland St.
Join Historic Columbia and the University of South Carolina at a panel discussion featuring Dell Upton, Ph.D., professor of architectural history, UCLA and author of the recently-published What Can and Can’t be Said: Race, Uplift and Monument Building in the Contemporary South. Additional panelists include Representative Gilda Cobb-Hunter, District 66, Orangeburg and Todd Shaw, Ph.D. associate professor and interim chair, Department of Political Science, USC.  Thomas Brown, Ph.D., professor of history, USC will open the program with commentary on the memorials and monuments on the grounds of the SC Statehouse then moderate the panel discussion. This lecture is free and open to the public; however, space is limited so please RSVP to reservations@historiccolumbia.org. Visit historiccolumbia.org to learn more.

Homeschool Friday: Technology Changes in the 19th Century

Friday, Feb. 3 | 10 – 11:30 a.m. | Robert Mills Carriage House

Historic Columbia’s Homeschool Friday program returns on Friday, Feb. 3 from 10-11:30 a.m. and will explore how mass-production and new technology changed the way life was in the 19th century. Students will visit the Hampton-Preston Mansion and Woodrow Wilson Family Home to learn about changes in lighting, see how homes were heated, restrooms were used and how businesses operated and much more. In addition, students will take part in hands-on activities, including looking through a stereoscope, which is similar to 3D glasses. Homeschool Friday is $5 for members, $6 for non-members and $8 for both members and non-members day-of. Visit historiccolumbia.org, call (803) 252-1770 x. 26 or email cgalens@historiccolumbia.org to make reservations.

The Palladium Society’s 19th Annual Chili Cook-Off

Saturday, Feb. 11 | 5:30 – 8 p.m. | Music Farm  

Bring your appetite to The Palladium Society’s 19th annual Chili Cookoff from 5:30 to 8 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 11 at the Music Farm Columbia located at 1022 Senate St. Hosted by Historic Columbia’s The Palladium Society, the Chili Cookoff is an annual fundraiser that brings local cookers together under one roof to compete for the best chili in town. The Cookoff will feature all you can eat chili recipes cooked by local cookers, judging by local celebrities, cash prizes for the winners and live music from two Columbia bands, the Kenny George Band and the Nick Clyburn Band. In addition, tickets include an open beer and wine bar. Advance tickets to the Chili Cookoff are $25 for Palladium Society members, $30 for Historic Columbia members and $35 for the general public, and all tickets sold at the door will be $45. For the first time, limited VIP tickets are also available. Tickets are on sale now and can be purchased at historiccolumbia.org/chili.

Second Sunday Roll | Homeplaces, Workplaces, Resting Places: An African American Heritage Sites Tour

Sunday, Feb. 12 | 2 – 3:30 p.m. | Tour begins at the Gift Shop at Robert Mills

Explore important local African American sites with Historic Columbia on Sunday, Feb. 12 during the monthly Second Sunday Roll presented by Seed Architecture, LLC. From the newly interpreted Mann-Simons Site, to the North Carolina Mutual Building, this tour explores houses, businesses and other important African American sites. Largely comprised of sites listed on the National Register of Historic Places, this tour features locations that illustrate important events and little-known facts about Columbia’s African American community.  Second SundayRoll is $8/adult and $4/youth for members and $12/adult and $6/youth for non-members. Space is limited. To purchase tickets, visit historiccolumbia.org, email reservations@historiccolumbia.org or call 803-252-1770 x 23.

Mann-Simons Site Volunteer Training

Monday, Feb. 13, Saturday, Feb. 18 and Monday, Feb. 27 | 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. | Mann-Simons Site

Historic Columbia invites the public to help share the history of the Mann-Simons family and become a volunteer tour guide of the newly interpreted site. Interested volunteers will need to participate in one of the following all-day training sessions: Monday, Feb. 13, Saturday, Feb. 18 and Monday, Feb. 27. These training sessions will consist of the following: a sample tour of the site, an overview of the family, history of the site, broad topics related to the site- Slavery, Jim Crow, Civil Rights and Urban Renewal, and a day in the life of a volunteer, which will cover logistics of giving tours and other opportunities at the site. Light refreshments will be available. Volunteer training is free. For more information, please call 803.252.1770 x24, email bkleinfelder@historiccolumbia.org or visithistoriccolumbia.org.

Lunch & Learn Series | Honoring Black History Month

Feb. 14, 21 and 28 | 12 – 1 p.m. | Mann-Simons Site

Historic Columbia’s Lunch & Learn series returns for a three-part installment that will honor Black History Month and will explore important African American people, places and moments in history. The sessions will take place from noon – 1 p.m. on Feb. 14. 21 and 28 at the Mann-Simons Site located at 1403 Richland St.

Neither Citizen nor Slave: Free Black Columbians Before the Civil War

Tuesday, Feb. 14 | noon – 1 p.m. | Mann-Simons Site

Presenter: John Sherrer, director of cultural resources, Historic Columbia

Overview: Explore the lives of free people of color living and working in Columbia before and during the Civil War.

Absolute Slaves: Race, Law and Society in Antebellum South Carolina

Tuesday, Feb. 21 | noon – 1 p.m. | Mann-Simons Site

Presenter: Rochelle Outlaw, J.D., Ph.D. Candidate, USC

Overview: Learn about the common-law definition of race and how it related to social and political thought on race in antebellum South Carolina.

Modjeska Simkins and the Fight for Educational Equality

Tuesday, Feb. 28 | noon – 1 p.m. | Mann-Simons Site

Presenter: Candace Cunningham, Ph.D. Candidate and history professor, USC

Overview: Learn how Modjeska Simkins, South Carolina’s matriarch of human rights, worked with NAACP leaders, teachers and ordinary people to ensure equal pay for black teachers and better education opportunities for black children.

Bring your lunch as we munch our way into the past. Walk-ins will be accepted as space allows but reservations are recommended. Tickets to attend the entire three-part series are $25 for members and college students and $30 for non-members. Admission for individual sessions are also available for $10 for members and college students and $12 for non-members. Advance reservation is encouraged and space is limited. For more information and to purchase tickets, visithistoriccolumbia.org, email reservations@historiccolumbia.org or call 803-252-1770 x 23.

Deadline for Preservation Award Submissions

Thursday, Feb. 16 | Deadline for award submission

Nominations are now being accepted through Thursday, Feb. 16for Historic Columbia’s annualPreservation Awards. Each year, these awards recognize local projects and individuals who have maintained or added to the historical, architectural and cultural heritage in Columbia and Richland County. In addition, a Preservation Leadership Award is presented to individuals who contribute to the advancement of historic preservation in the region. Preservation Award recipients will be recognized at an awards ceremony on May 3, 2017. Nomination forms are available at historiccolumbia.org or by emailing lcarlisle@historiccolumbia.org.

Dollar Sunday | Mann-Simons Site

Sunday, Feb. 19 | 1-4 p.m. | 1403 Richland Street

The third Sunday of the month, residents of Richland and Lexington counties are invited to tour of one of Historic Columbia’s house museums for just $1 on Dollar Sunday! On Sunday, Feb.19, visit the new exhibits at the Mann-Simons Site, the home to the same African-American family for nearly 130 years. Throughout the day, Historic Columbia will showcase artifacts that are not normally on display and will present a variety of hands-on children’s activities, including archeological dig boxes. The house will be open for guests to tour at their own pace, and guides will be available to answer any questions. Tickets can be purchased at the Mann-Simons Site located at 1403 Richland Street. General admission prices apply to all other properties.

President’s Day Tours | Woodrow Wilson Family Home: A Museum of Reconstruction

Monday, Feb. 20, 11:30 a.m. –4 p.m. | Woodrow Wilson Family Home

Join Historic Columbia on Monday, Feb. 20 for tours of the Woodrow Wilson Family Home: A Museum of Reconstruction to see how Wilson’s time in Columbia may have influenced his decisions as president. Normally closed to the public on Mondays, there is no better way to mark President’s Day than by taking a tour of the only Presidential site in South Carolina. Tours are free for members, $8 for adults, $5 youth (ages 6-17) and free for children under 5. The house will be open for guests to tour at their own pace, and guides will be available to answer any questions. Tickets can be purchased at the Woodrow Wilson Family Home located at 1705 Hampton St.  Visithistoriccolumbia.org to learn more.


Historic House Museum Tours
TuesdaySaturday: 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. and Sunday: 1 p.m. – 4 p.m.

Historic Columbia’s historic house museum tours offer a peek into the past! Tour the Robert Mills HouseHampton-Preston MansionMann-Simons Site or the Woodrow Wilson Family Home to learn more about Columbia’s history. Tours are free for members, $8 for adults, $5 youth (ages 6-17) and free for children under 5. Visit historiccolumbia.org for more information.

Group Tours

Historic Columbia is happy to arrange a private guided tour groups of 10 or more with advance registration. Bus tours are available. To schedule a group tour, call 803.252.1770 x 23 or emailreservations@historiccolumbia.org.

About Historic Columbia:

In November 1961, a small group of individuals intent on saving the Ainsley Hall House from demolition officially incorporated as the Historic Columbia Foundation. Over the next five decades the organization, which was founded on the premise of preservation and education, would take on the stewardship of seven historic properties in Richland County. Today, the organization serves as a model for local preservation efforts and interpretation of local history. Visit historiccolumbia.org or find us on TwitterFacebookInstagram or YouTube for more details.


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