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1.1.4. Property Files, circa 1920s-1990s


Collection Overview

From the Collection:

The collection includes materials related to the professional and personal life of Herbert DeCosta, Jr., his wife Emily, and numerous family members. It has been arranged into six series: Business Records, Personal Material, Emily DeCosta, St. Mark's Episcopal Church, the DeCosta Family, and the Craft and Kinloch Families.

1. Business Records (91.41 linear feet). Records cover multiple corporate entities: H. A. DeCosta Company General Contractors, the HADCO Company, the Midway Company, a DeCosta General Insurance Company, and the H. A. DeCosta Company Construction Consultants. Within these business records are financial information, operational and administrative documents, property files, and legal suit documentation. The work files of H. A. DeCosta Company General Contractors contain invoices, estimates, blueprints, drawings, photographs, and other materials related to residences, stores, churches, and other properties principally in South Carolina (particularly Charleston).

2. Herbert A. DeCosta (16.75 linear feet). Contains correspondence, photographs, artwork, travel journals, awards and other memorabilia related to Herbert A. DeCosta's education, travels, and personal and professional history. Also includes materials concerning to his civic involvement, which includes numerous community and cultural organizations, fraternal organizations, and professional affiliations. The materials include correspondence, meeting minutes, and other documents related to the business, religious, political, preservation, civil rights, and community organizations in which DeCosta either held membership or served as a consultant.

3. Emily DeCosta (1.25 linear feet). Includes materials related to Emily Spencer DeCosta's education, early life, civic involvement and correspondence. Materials also relate to the Spencer family, including her parents Dr. James Preston Spencer and Evie Carpenter Spencer.

4. St. Mark's Episcopal Church (1.25 linear feet). Includes committee notes, church bulletins, and other material that reflect Herbert and Emily DeCosta's involvement with St. Mark's Episcopal Church in Charleston. Documents relate to various committees on which they served as well as other church functions.

5. DeCosta Family (0.75 linear feet). Includes materials related to Herbert A. DeCosta's paternal family history, including correspondence, photographs, publications, and other memorabilia. Family members include Benjamin Rhodes DeCosta, the descendents of Benjamin Robert DeCosta, Herbert A. DeCosta, Sr., Elizabeth DeCosta Sartor and the Sartor family, Daisy DeCosta Caffey and the Caffey family, Miriam DeCosta Seabrook, Eugenia DeCosta Higgens and the Higgins family, and Frank A. DeCosta and his family.

6. Craft and Kinloch Families (0.75 linear feet). Includes material from the relatives of Herbert A. DeCosta's mother, Julia Craft DeCosta. Items include genealogical charts, last will and testaments, photographs, correspondence, and publications. Publications focus on the escape of William and Ellen Craft from slavery.


  • Creation: circa 1920s-1990s


Access Restrictions

No restrictions.


55.75 linear feet

Language of Materials

From the Collection: English

Repository Details

Part of the Avery Research Center for African American History and Culture Repository

125 Bull Street
Charleston South Carolina 29424 United States