Magnolia Cemetery is a historic cemetery in Charleston, South Carolina. It was dedicated in 1850; Charles Fraser delivered the dedication address. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places as a Historic District in 1978. Notable queer burials at Magnolia Cemetery:
• Ned Jennings (1898-1929) was born in Washington, D.C., but moved to Charleston with his parents within a few weeks. His father would become postmaster of the city and an early developer of Folly Beach. Jennings attended Porter Military Academy and soon became one of the “boys” that Laura Bragg, director of the Charleston Museum, would mentor over the years. He went to Paris in 1927 and studied privately with the artists Mela Meuter and Walter Renee Fuerst, eventually returning to the city.
• Helen Gardner McCormack (1903-1974) was head of the Gibbes Art Gallery for years and years, and she was beloved aroung town. She was the second big lover of the other museum director, Laura Bragg, who was running the Gibbes’s rival, the Charleston Museum.
• Isabelle Bowen-Heyward (1870-1926) entered a romantic friendship with Laura Bragg that would last until her death. By February 1915 Bragg moved into Belle’s home at 7 Gibbes Street, where the rooms were filled with the Bowen and Heyward family silver and “people are always laughing,” or so she wrote her father. These letters home were filled with news off her new romantic partner: “Belle has made me one of the family and I am more comfortably situated than I have ever before been.” This emotional partnership with Belle provided Bragg with an entrée into a social circle well-connected to the powerful political and economic leaders of the community.
• Josephine Pinckney (1895-1957) was a novelist and poet in the literary revival of the American South after WWI. Her first best-selling novel was the social comedy, “Three O'clock Dinner” (1945). Josephine Pinckney was born in Charleston to Thomas Pinkney and Camilla Scott. She received the Southern Authors Award in 1946. As a poet, novelist, and essayist, Pinckney was an active participant in the Charleston Renaissance. In 1920, she co-founded the Poetry Society of South Carolina. She was involved in institutions such as the Charleston Museum and Dock Street Theatre and was an early proponent of the historic preservation of Charleston. She was an active member of the Society for the Preservation of Spirituals, which transcribed and annotated African American songs. Both organizations met for the first time at Pinckney's home at 21 King St. in Charleston.
Queer Places, Vol. 1 edited by Elisa Rolle
Release Date: July 24, 2016
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