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St. Michaels Church Charleston

Charleston, SC is a city full of rich history. Founded and settled in 1670 by English colonists as “Charles Towne,” it played host to a blend of cultural influences that included Europe, Barbados & the Caribbean, and the African people that arrived as slaves. These immigrants brought a variety of religions to Charleston, including Judaism, several Protestant denominations, and Roman Catholicism. The European immigrants quickly built places of worship where they could gather, and the city became known as the “Holy City” for its tolerance for many different religions and its abundance of church steeples. Many of these historic churches still exist in Charleston today, such as St. Michael’s Church, and several of them hold services as well as offer tours.


St. Michael’s Church is the oldest church in Charleston, SC. The church was built as a small, unpretentious place of worship in the 1680’s by the Church of England. Eventually, Charleston’s population grew too large and they had to build a bigger church on Church Street. This church was burned down in 1751 and was rebuilt in 1761 at its current location at 71 Broad Street next to Charleston City Hall.

The church was designed in a style common to the Colonial Period, one in which the altar was built close to the congregation to make sure the service could be heard by all and allowed for space for the worshippers to participate. A gallery on three sides of the room also allows for more people to sit up close to the altar. Although this style was common during the period, St. Michael’s is one of the few churches in America that has kept the original design.

The interior of the church showcases original woodwork, original Tiffany stained glass windows, and a chandelier ordered from London in 1803. There is a graveyard next to the church with tombstones dating back hundreds of years.

St. Michael’s Church is also known for its “Governor’s Pew.” Famous people including George Washington and Robert E. Lee have worshipped at this double pew which is located in the center of the church.

If you would like to visit St. Michael’s Church, the church is open every day of the week and welcomes visitors to all of their services. You can visit their website for specific hours.


If you are looking for accommodation in Charleston, consider booking one of our historic vacation homes. We offer luxury vacation homes in the heart of the city where you are walking distance from some of Charleston’s best restaurants, shops, art galleries, and attractions. For more information on our vacation homes or to book a rental, please contact one of our concierge specialists today.


To learn more about some of Charleston’s many churches, we invite you to download our free Insider’s Guide to Charleston.

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