The League of Women Voters of the Charleston Area is concerned about Charleston County’s plans to widen SC Highway 41 to 5 lanes through the center of the Phillips community, an African American settlement area and unincorporated community of Charleston County founded in 1875 with 176 families. This plan will further divide the Phillips community and impact Seven Mile, another settlement community at the intersection of US Highway 17. The 75-foot right of way will require the purchase of 84 properties, 71 of those properties are in Phillips.
To complicate the situation, many in the Phillips and Seven Mile communities do not have clear title to their land which has passed down from generation to generation since post-Civil War when their formerly enslaved ancestors purchased the property.
LWVCA stands in opposition to Charleston County’s proposed Alternative 1 for Highway 41 through the Phillips Community in Mt. Pleasant.
Please take action: Show your support for the members of the Phillips and Seven Mile communities. Your support is encouraged regardless of your address in the tri-county area:
If you are a Charleston County resident, email comments to Charleston County Council Members – You may offer your comments and recommendations directly to any and all Council members at the following email addresses:
- Elliott Summey: esummey [at] charlestoncounty.org
- Herb Sass: hsass [at] charlestoncounty.org
- Vic Rawl: vrawl [at] charlestoncounty.org
- Dickie Schweers: dickieschweers [at] tds.net
- Henry Darby: henrydarby [at] msn.com
- Teddie Pryor: tpryor [at] charlestoncounty.org
- Brantley Moody: bmoody [at] charlestoncounty.org
- Anna Johnson: ajohnson [at] charlestoncounty.org
- Jenny Honeycutt: jhoneycutt [at] charlestoncounty.org
Points You May Wish to Emphasize:
It is recommended that key points outlined in the Coastal Conservation petition may serve as excellent talking points as well as:
- Alternative 1 would disrupt the lives and culture of Phillips and Seven Mile communities.
- These communities are not only the homes for these families but are the heritage of freed slaves following the Civil War. The communities are themselves, historic and worth of preservation and protection.
- The Charleston County Council should not write another chapter in the long history of the diminution of African-American heritage, tradition, and real property.
- Communities of color are under-represented in local government and as such their concerns are often not understood.
- Under-represented communities of color are systemically impacted by transportation projects in this area and even nationwide.
Additional Action & Next Steps: Should you have questions about this Action Alert or how you can volunteer to assist in next steps, please contact kirstenLWVCA [at] gmail.com (Kirsten Abrahamson), LWVCA Director of Advocacy or leah_p18 [at] yahoo.com (Leah Pedersen), LWVCA Director of Natural Resources.