The College of Charleston Friends of the Library (FOL) will host Virginia Beach, author of “Rice and Ducks: The Surprising Convergence that Saved the Carolina Lowcountry,” for the FOL’s Fall 2014 Authors’ Series.

Rice&DucksCover-embedThe event takes place on Sept. 23, 2014, in the Washington McKinley Auditorium at the Avery Research Center for African American History and Culture, 125 Bull St. The lecture is free and open to the public.

Beach writes for numerous local and regional publications on the subjects of conservation and natural history, and has served on the staffs of The Nature Conservancy, the Lowcountry Open Land Trust and the South Carolina Sea Grant Consortium. A native of Richmond, Va., she graduated from the University of Virginia and served as a Peace Corps volunteer in East Africa.

Beach’s book considers the important interactions between southern plantation owners, slave descendants, northern industrialists, powerful U.S. Senators, daring scientists, dedicated game managers, media magnates, Trappist monks and Wall Street financiers. These unlikely allies recognized a need to preserve the Lowcountry’s natural bounty in the face of development and industrial growth after the Civil War and into the 20th century.  An extraordinary conservation ethos emerged that would result in the permanent protection of more than 1.2 million acres along the coastal plain of South Carolina.

Following the lecture, Beach will host a book signing. Copies of her book will be on sale the evening of the event; all proceeds go toward the conservation and restoration of migratory bird habitat.