By Abigail Darlington, Post and Courior
Turn the corner onto Spring Street from the strip of new hotels and elite restaurants on Charleston’s Upper King Street, and you might notice a green highway sign dangling above the passing traffic.
“Welcome to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial District,” it says, hinting the corridor might be a nexus of the peninsula’s historically black communities.
For a long time, it was.
Spring Street and the parallel Cannon Street were the thriving commercial hubs of a mostly black, middle-class neighborhood throughout the 20th century. In the days of Jim Crow segregation, residents could go see a movie or grocery shop in the area without having to venture into parts of town they weren’t welcome.