Mount Pleasant Magazine Jan/Feb 2022

37 www. ReadMPM. com | www.MountPl easantMagaz i ne. com | www.MountPl easantPodcas t . com an organization devoted to heritage preservation. In 1999, a home builder intended to relocate many graves and build on the banks of Molasses Creek, but members of the Scanlonville community and the Chicora Foundation drew attention to the prospect of disturbing the historic and sacred site. Instead, the cemetery is now listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The shore of the Wando River provided residents of Scanlonville a place for recreational opportunities, but the location was known also to Black people in the city who used the spot for summertime outings and picnics. By the 1930s, the Cooper River Bridge Company had officially established Riverside Beach as a “Blacks only” beach. “Before Riverside, there had been no beach where Blacks were accepted, even though there is water all around us,” Ruby Cornwell told the Chicora Foundation. A bath house, boardwalk, playground and dance pavilion were added, allowing Count Basie, B.B. King, Duke Ellington and Louis Armstrong to perform to all-Black audiences. The community’s popular music scene led to a number of small juke joints popping up throughout Scanlonville. In 1943, White’s Paradise Hotel was built at Riverside Beach, and music legend James Brown was known to frequently perform at its nightclub. The singer would rehearse during the daytime and locals were able to catch him practicing. Brown was also known to participate in a game of pick-up baseball with neighborhood residents. The hotel was in operation until the 1980s, but by the 1960s, live shows at Riverside’s pavilion were replaced with a local radio station’s broadcast by a disc jockey. Charleston County assumed ownership of Riverside Beach in 1975, and the property was eventually sold to the developers of the neighborhoods Molasses Creek, River Watch, River Reach and Harbor Watch. Scanlonville was one of only a handful of communities of its kind in the state — and the only one still in existence. Robert Scanlon’s original venture, the Charleston Land Company, was liquidated during the Great Depression, but the community has survived the winds of change. For more information on the history of Scanlonville, visit, or view Lee’s and Collier’s video presentation, “Scanlonville: A History, the Land and Community,” via the town of Mount Pleasant’s website at feature Happy Valentine’s Day 264N. Shelmore Blvd., Mount Pleasant, SC 843.881.2364 | All of our baked goods are made with love! We make everything fresh to ensure the best taste and highest quality. Get the Best Solution for Your Home and Budget. Reliable, upfront service for your home’s A/C, heating, plumbing & gas Make Us Your 1st Choice! BOOK YOUR APPOINTMENT 843-518-1479 Photo by Stan Foxworthy Congrats to all the Best of Mount Pleasant Winners!