Charleston County is working to identify families linked to McLeod Plantation Cemetery
JAMES ISLAND, SC (WCSC) – Charleston County Parks and Recreation has known of the McLeod Plantation Cemetery on James Island since taking possession of the site several years ago.
When McLeod Plantation became part of Charleston County Parks, they didn’t know how to properly honor those who rested there. Several years later, they have more information and determine the scope of this project.
Toby Smith of Charleston County Parks and Recreation explains that this space was used from 1777 to 1965. Many passers-by don’t realize the cemetery exists.
“We are in the process of finding the obituaries of some of the people who live here to determine the scope and parameters of this space,” Smith said.
The CCPR initially believed there were remains of around 100 people in space. Their contractor, New South Associates, however, was able to determine that there were around 300 people buried there.
Smith says they are now looking to connect the descendants of those buried at this site
“It is remarkable to think of the lives and times of people who are resting. Some of these people go all the way back to the slavery era, some go all the way back to the slavery era,” Smith says.
McLeod Plantation Cemetery is not a traditional cemetery where every plot has a headstone; only a few people had this luxury. Through processes such as ground-penetrating radar and detection dogs, the contractors were able to identify all the places they thought remains were and marked them with flags.
Each flag has a number, and they will be uploaded to a computer system that will allow CCPR to map where everyone was buried.
CCPR is asking for input from anyone in the community who has additional information about the site or its descendants.
“We would like to bring all the names together with their beginning of life and end of life so that we can start telling the stories of who they are in the middle,” Smith says.
Adam Ronan, project manager, says it is possible to formalize this cemetery, but that will not be determined until they have more input from families and descendants. Ronan says their wishes will be a big factor in their decision making.
If you are a descendant or have information about McLeod Cemetery, please contact Matthew Rosebrock of the Charleston County Parks Foundation via email at [email protected]; or Toby Smith, Cultural History Interpretation Coordinator, at 843-762-9508 or by email at [email protected]
Copyright 2022 WCSC. All rights reserved.