DNR News** Archived Article - please check for current information. **
SCDNR leases historic building for archaeology headquarters October 20, 2017
The new facility will be the only one of its kind in South Carolina and will give the public an opportunity to learn of the state’s rich cultural heritage.
The S.C. Department of Natural Resources Heritage Trust Program has leased the historic Parker Annex located on the southeast corner of the Bull Street property.
Constructed in 1910 and recently purchased and restored by Diversified Development, Inc., the Parker Annex will be referred to by SCDNR as the Parker Annex Archaeology Center. The new facility will be the only one of its kind in South Carolina and will give the public an opportunity to learn of the state’s rich cultural heritage.
"We intend the historic building to serve as staff offices, laboratory and curation for archaeological collections from SCDNR lands," SCDNR Senior Archaeologist Sean Taylor said. “The building will be the home base for the cultural preserve management and archaeological public outreach program."
Parker Annex Archaeology Center will serve as the new home for SCDNR's Cultural Heritage Trust Program. In the coming year as field excavations are conducted, the public will be invited to work not only in the field, but in the laboratory cleaning, analyzing and cataloging artifacts. The new facility will be the only one of its kind in South Carolina and will give the public an opportunity to learn of the state’s rich cultural heritage.
The Heritage Trust Program was established as the first of its kind in the nation in 1974. The Parker Annex Archaeology Center is the first building the program has acquired that will have dedicated office, laboratory, curation and outreach space.
“The Heritage Trust staff, board and the SCDNR Board chose to fund this project as they have long recognized the need for a facility that would allow for the collection, cataloging, preservation, storage and display of artifacts from the Heritage Trust properties and other SCDNR properties,” SCDNR Land, Water and Conservation Deputy Director Ken Rentiers stated.” This facility will also be a center for educational outreach. Public access to these properties and the artifacts associated with them continues to be a high priority for the Heritage Trust program and the SCDNR and, as more properties come into the program and additional artifacts are discovered, the center will be a valuable resource for current and future generations.”
The restored, 9,344-square-foot Parker Annex was originally constructed in 1910 to relieve overcrowding of African-American male patients housed in the Parker building (1898-1981). By 1926, African-American patients were moved to the State Park campus, and the Parker Annex began to house Caucasian male patients with tuberculosis. From 1975-1978, the building was used for the Step-Up Program. Use of the building after 1978 is unknown.
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