University of South Carolina

Edgewood, now called the Pickens-Salley House
Edgewood, now called the Pickens-Salley House

Edgewood documentary to air Sept. 16

The recently produced docudrama, "Edgewood: Stage of Southern History," will air on S.C. ETV's Southern Lens program Sept. 16 at 10 p.m.

Produced by a team of women, "Edgewood" presents the many stories of the people who have lived and worked in the historic house—now located on the USC Aiken campus—during its 180 years with a special emphasis on the story of the women—Lucy Holcombe Pickens and Eulalie Chafee Salley. For more information on "Edgewood," go to or visit

The production of "Edgewood" was made possible by a number of grants including the Community Foundation of the CSRA, the Humanities Council of South Carolina, S.C. National Heritage Corridor, Porter Fleming Foundation, the American Association of University Women, the S.C. League of Women Voters, and the Julian B. Salley Pickens-Salley House Endowment at USC Aiken.

"Edgewood: Stage of Southern History" Synopsis

For nearly two centuries, the backcountry-styled plantation house named Edgewood has been the "stage" for some of the most significant events in Southern history. Originally built in Edgefield, S.C., in 1829 for secessionist governor Francis W. Pickens, the house was the home of two remarkable women: Lucy Holcombe Pickens and Eulalie Chafee Salley.

Lucy was celebrated, in her time, as the "Queen of the Confederacy." She was the only female to be featured on Confederate currency. Her genteel yet dynamic personality and legendary beauty continues to fascinate historians. Her daughter Douschka, who rode with the Red Shirts in 1876, and her slave-confidante Lucinda, who voluntarily stayed after the end of the Civil War, both left their legacies linked to Edgewood. The legacy of Lucy's granddaughter, Lucy Dugas Tillman, who lost her children and then regained them in a bitter custody battle, linked Edgewood's next owner, Eulalie, with the nationwide movement for women's rights. In 1929 after twenty years of neglect, Eulalie rescued Edgewood.

Eulalie was a prominent leader in the early suffrage movement in South Carolina, as well as one of its first woman real estate agents and business owners. Although Edgewood's restoration was hampered by the Great Depression, Eulalie moved "the Pickens House" to Aiken and welcomed both the famous and the infamous through the massive front doors.

Recounted by the "voice" of the house, "Edgewood: Stage of Southern History" tells the stories of the extraordinary people who lived, worked, and visited the house over her long lifetime. The tales range from her memories of the Antebellum era, the War Between the States, the Pickens' visit to Czarist Russia, the Suffrage movement, the Winter Colony settlement in Aiken, the creation of the Savannah River Site, and the Civil Rights Era. Today the house is known as the Pickens-Salley House and is located on the USC Aiken campus.


Posted: 09/03/10 @ 12:00 AM | Updated: 09/03/10 @ 9:23 AM | Permalink



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