The South Carolina State Historic Preservation Office has awarded a $200,000 grant to the Taveau Church in Cordesville (Berkeley County) to stabilize and reinforce foundations, walls, and main sill of this ca. 1835 church noted for its Classic Revival architecture. It’s located near Mepkin Abbey and Strawberry Chapel.
The church property was purchased recently by the group Preservation South Carolina. According to their website “In 1835, Martha Carolina Swinton Ball Taveau built a Presbyterian Church. Upon her death in 1847, Black Methodists began using the church for worship. They would do so for 175 years until the Methodist Conference closed it in 1974. No matter how much the community wished to maintain its historic church they could not afford the needed repairs. Taveau, seemingly, had no future..
In June, 2023, and after a year of hard work, Preservation South Carolina, working with the congregation, acquired the 50-year closed Taveau. We are grateful and appreciative for their trust, and the support we have received from the area’s Black religious leaders, Mepkin Abbey, and the vestry of Strawberry Chapel. This is a church for the ages, and we are eager to preserve the church and its stories.”
For more information on Taveau Church check out these links:
Taveau Church South Carolina Picture Project (Great pictures here!)
Taveau Church: A Landmark of National Significance Preservation South Carolina
Taveau’s history unique among the state’s rural churches Charleston Mercury
The Post & Courier updated their coverage of the Taveau Church restoration project July 26. CLICK HERE to see their story. Note: non subscribers to the P&C will hit a paywall!
NOTE: This blog was updated July 6, 2023 to correct some ambiguity involving the South Carolina State Historic Preservation Office…the government agency providing the $200,000 grant and the group Preservation South Carolina which recently acquired the church property and is working on its restoration.