Halloween Ghost Tour Educates Students on Geography/Social Issues

On Halloween, College of Charleston students will be trading desks and lectures for something a little more authentic – a ghost tour. Professor Annette Watson will take students in her “Reading the Lowcountry Landscape” course on a walking tour of the City. Instead of leaving the students scared, she wants to leave them educated – about the role of ghost tourism in the city’s economy and the bigger picture of how geography and politics affected the events in the tales.

The tour will take students to the Unitarian Graveyard, the Old Jail and to a few sites where hauntings have been reported South of Broad. Watson will tell the tales of the first female serial killer, the foiled rebellion of Denmark Vesey and the pirates who were reported to curse the City as they were hung from the oaks for their crimes.

“Charleston really is a classroom for our students, and I try to take advantage of it as often as I can,” says Watson, a political science professor. “This tour brings to life our readings and discussions. They have a context for concepts like the role of public spaces in forming identities, and as sites of political struggle. Plus, it plays into my research on how different social groups develop a ‘sense of place’ about the Lowcountry and how that impacts decision making.”

The Reading the Lowcountry Landscape (GEOG 219) course examines the politics and geography in our own back yard: how people of different socio-economic and cultural backgrounds have experienced this place, and the meanings they ascribe to “the Lowcountry.”

For more information, contact Annette Watson at 843.953.5864 or watsonam@cofc.edu.