Penn Center on St. Helena Island has been recognized by the National Trust for Historic Preservation as a once endangered historic site that’s now a success story.
The preservation organization publishes an annual list of the nation’s most endangered historic sites to draw attention to their plight and rally public support. Penn Center, one of the first schools for former slaves and a staging ground for the civil rights movement, appeared on the list in 1990 and 1991 after falling into neglect, a news release said.
The publicity helped raise money to restore some buildings on campus, and Penn Center has since thrived as an ode to Reconstruction and Gullah culture.
Penn Center’s Darrah Hall was included among the sites of a national monument to Reconstruction created in northern Beaufort County inn January.