1776 -- News arrived in Charles Town that the Declaration of Independence had been signed in Philadelphia. Lowcountry signers included Thomas Lynch, Arthur Middleton, Edward Rutledge and Thomas Heyward.
1775 -- The slave Thomas Jeremiah went on trial under the Negro Act of 1740 for helping to arm other enslaved Blacks in support of the British cause. Found guilty, he was sentenced "to be hanged, and then burned to ashes." (Source: Charleston, Charleston! by Walt Fraser, p. 145)
1775 -- A local mob seized a British soldier "for some insolent speech he had made," tarred and feathered him, and "putting him in a cart paraded through the Town ... using him very cruelly all the time." But the afternoon, the crowd had grown to 400, who roamed through the streets, stopping at the houses of suspected Crown sympathizers, using the soldier to demonstrate what their fate might be if they continued their support of the Crown. (Source: Charleston, Charleston! by Walt Fraser, p. 145)
1901 -- The city of Charleston sold the former Chicora Plantation, a few miles north of the city and along the Cooper River, to the U.S. Navy to create a base and shipyard.
1741 -- As reported in the Gazette, an enslaved man named Boatswain was brutally excuted after being named as a co-conspirator in a arsonist's plot. The disturbing article shows evidence of the increasing fear whites had as the enslaved Black majority of the colony increased.
1695 -- John Archdale, a Quaker, was appointed Governor of the Carolina colony.
1775 -- Jemmy, the slave who testified against his brother-in-law Thomas Jeremiah, recanted his testimony that Jeremiah had been involved in transporting British arms to this enslaved colleagues. (Source: Charleston, Charleston! by Walt Fraser, p. 146)
1780 -- Capt. Archibald Broun, a Revolutionary hero of Brounsfield Plantation in Mt. Pleasant, married Mary Deas, the daughter of his wealthy neighbors, John and Elizabeth Allen Deas of Thoroughgood Plantation.
1775 -- Despite his brother-in-law's recanted tesimony that he was distributing British arms to enslaved Negros, Thomas Jeremiah was hanged anyway, then burnt to ashes as his sentence decreed. He had maintained his innocence to the end. S.C. Gov. William Campbell believed Jeremiah was innocent, as did the Royal Attorney General, saying Jeremiah was the victim of local hysteria. (Source: Charleston, Charleston! by Walt Fraser, p. 146)
1764 -- Arthur Middleton married Mary Izard, "a Lady who is one of the first of her sex for sense, politeness and every female accomplishment."
1694 -- In his will written on this date, Capt. John Coming left his entire estate to his widow, Affra Harleston Coming.
1863 -- Some time around 10:45 p.m., Union Maj. Gen. Quincy Gillmore sent a note to Confederate Gen. P.G.T. Beauregard demanding Charleston's immediate surrender or else at midnight he would commence firing from a new battery recently built between James and Morris islands to hold the canon known as the Swamp Angel.
1863 -- Union Maj. Gen. Quincy Gillmore began firing upon Charleston using the canon known as the Swamp Angel. It blew up on its 20th shot.
1526 -- Spanish explorer Lucas de Ayllon visited the area around Cape Romain, naming the area Cape San Romano, as this date is St. Romano's Day. (Source: Home in the Village by Walter Bonner.)
1863 -- The Swamp Angel exploded on its 20th shot of the evening.
1671 -- The new British and Barbadian settlers at Albemarle Point (i.e., Charle Towne Landing) held a parliament, noting that while the Church of England would be the new colony's established church, they had no minister. Gov. William Sayle therefore wrote to Lord Proprietor Anthony Ashley Cooper asking his to send "a Godly and othodox minist'r.'" (Source: A Short History of Charleston, p. 12.)
1951 -- Seventy-three orphans left the Charleston Orphanage for the last time before it is torn down to make room for a new Sears Department Store.
1782 -- In the waning days of the American Revolution, John Laurens was shot off his horse and mortally wounded.
1886 -- The largest earthquake ever recorded on the East Coast, estimated to have been a 7.2 on today's Richter Scale, struck Charleston.