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Archive for the category “The Ghosts of Philadelphia Alley”


JULY 5, 2012


Charleston, South Carolina (JFK+50) We are vacationing in downtown Charleston, South Carolina for the next few days.

Today I walked through one of this city’s hidden landmarks, Philadelphia Alley.

Philadelphia Alley, Charleston, S.C. Photo by John White, 2012


The alley was created by Francis Kinloch in 1766 as a passage leading to a row of rental tenements behind his home.

These buildings were destroyed in the fire of 1796.

A Revolutionary War veteran, William Johnson, later reopened Kinloch Alley as a street & named it in honor of the city of Philadelphia.*

*Sources say that the name may have come from the fact that citizens of Philadelphia helped finance the cost of the street or that Johnson was imprisoned in the city of Philadelphia during the war.

Philadelphia Alley was renovated by the city of CHARLESTON in 2005.


Another name for this landmark is “Dueler’s Alley” because there was once a tavern here that served “a rough crowd.” 

 Sometimes they would carry their arguments through the doors of the tavern out into the alley where they would settle their differences.

It is said that Philadelphia Alley still carries the sound of pistols shots, the smell of gunpowder & ghostly visions of ladies in gowns appearing in photographs.**

**We took a Ghost Tour of Charleston back in 2005 which included a walk down Philadelphia’s Alley at night.  

My wife & daughter were walking ahead of me when I made a photo using a film style camera.  

When we had the film processed, a white “ghostly” image appeared just above my wife & daughter.

I do not have the print in digital form yet but will try to post it later.

Gate in Philadelphia Alley, Charleston, S.C. Photo by John White, 2012




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