Inventory of the Lecque Family Papers, 1941 - 1990, 1997

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Descriptive Summary

Abstract: The Lecque family of Liberty Hill, South Carolina, was an African American family consisting largely of farmers and brickmasons. The family was one of the founding families of the Liberty Hill community (in North Charleston), which was established by Freedmen circa 1864-1867 along the railroad tracks to Mixon Avenue and along Montague Avenue. In 1871, William Lecque along with three other African American men (Ismael Grant, Aaron Middleton, and Plenty Lecque) established the oldest church in the area, St. Peter's African Methodist Episcopal (A.M.E.) Church. The men purchased the 110 acres of land for $900 and built the church on the property. The residents of Liberty Hill predominately worked as farmers, but several were employed as shop owners and barbers.
The Lecque family papers contains historical and genealogical materials concerning the Lecque family and the community that they helped to found, Liberty Hill, South Carolina as researched by Ms. Carolyn Collins. The collection consists of photographs, newspaper clippings, and legal documents. The collection is arranged into five series: Historical Foundation includes newspaper clippings written by local journalists including Ruth Cupp's history of Liberty Hill, St. Peter's African Methodist Episcopal (A.M.E.) Church, and general information about the Lecque family; and includes St. Peter's A.M.E. Church's National Register of Historic Places application. The Obituaries series includes the funeral programs for Arnold William Lecque Sr., and his wife Wilhemena Jordan Lecque. Correspondence series contains letters from Carolyn Lecque Collins to individuals regarding her Anna Lecque and Arnold William Lecque Sr. The Legal Documents series contains legal records that denote various transfers of land. Family Photos includes photos of Lecque family members.
Title: Lecque Family Papers, 1941 - 1990, 1997
Creator: Lecque Family.
Repository: Avery Research Center at the College of Charleston
Call Number: AMN 1115
Language of Material: Material in English
Extent: 0.3 linear feet
(1 archival box)

Biographical and Historical Note

Liberty Hill and St. Peter's African Methodist Episcopal (A.M.E)Church

The Lecque family was one of the founding families of the Liberty Hill community, located in the area that is now called North Charleston, South Carolina. The community was established by Freedmen in 1864 (or 1867) along the railroad tracks to Mixon Avenue and along Montague Avenue. Liberty Hill was one of three communities established by Freemen in the North Area, the others were Petigrue, named after the Unionist attorney and the third was Lincoln Village, developed by the Pastor of the Emmanuel A.M.E. Church.

In 1871, William Lecque along with three other African American men (Ismael Grant, Aaron Middleton, and Plenty Lecque (William's brother)) established the oldest church in the area, St. Peter's African Methodist Episcopal (A.M.E.) Church. According to Ruth Cupp's research, church members previously worshiped in a tent in the Turnbull community, which is now the northern part of the Navy Base. The men purchased the 110 acres of land for $900 from Paul and Harriet Trescot and built the church on the property. William's son Elijah Lecque was the first of four generations (Abraham, Arnold Sr., Arnold Jr., and James) to pursue brickmasonery as a profession. The people of Liberty Hill mostly worked as farmers, but they also worked as shop owners and barbers.

In 2002, the City of North Charleston and the North Charleston Heritage Corridor erected a historical marker noting the significance of the town.

Lecque Family Background

Below is some information about a few of the known Lecque family members (Note: this should not be seen as an exhaustive compilation) (the dates and family connections were compiled from U.S. Census and death records through (http://www.ancestry.com/home/lo/index?version=d)

William Lecque (1822-?) was married to Minny Lecque and not only helped to build St. Peter's African Methodist Episcopal Church, but also worked as a farmer. William and Minny raised three children, Elijah (1868-1939), who became a brickmason; Ishmael; and Season.

Elijah married Minnie Johnson Lecque (Leque) (1878-1920) and they had five children Abram (1898-?), Rosa, Beulah, Augusta (1902-?), and Christina (1904-?). Abram Lecque married Anna Liza Scott Lecque (1895-1982), together they had two children Arnold William Lecque, Sr. (1914-1990); and James Alonzo Lecque (1915/1919-1948), married Beatrice Lecque and worked as a truck driver. Abram was a brickmason and helped to build the Navy Yard, West Virgina Pulp and Paper Co., and the Francis Marion Hotel in Charleston, South Carolina.

Arnold William Lecque, Sr., married Wilhemena Beatrice Jordan Lecque (1914-1982), they raised four children Arnold William Lecque, Jr. (1941-1998), James E. Lecque (1944-?), Carolyn E. Lecque Collins, who married Eugene Collins, Jr., and Sylvia Lecque Stoney (?-2004), who married Raymond Stoney. Arnold W. Lecque, Sr., worked as a bricklayer and served as president of the International Union of Bricklayers and Allied Craftsmen, No. 1 South Carolina and was appointed to numerous commissions including the North Charleston Public Service Commission, the Tri-County Hospital Commission, and the Tri-County Police Planning Commission. He also served as a delegate to three Democratic national conventions. In 1945, he was commissioned to brick the St. Peter's A.M.E. Church in Liberty Hill. Arnold Lecque Sr., was a part of a generation of brickmasons that included Thomas E. Garris, Bill Sanders, Charles Missell, C.P. Ford, and Coleman Jacques.

Carolyn Lecque Collins and her brother, the late Arnold William Lecque, Jr., opened up the Golden Dream Motel, which was built by their father, the late Arnold William Lecque, Sr., who repurposed Navy housing to create the motel.

The 1880 United States Census lists Plenty Lecque/Leque (1843-?) as married to Dolly Leque (1845-?) and working as a farm laborer. He was William's brother and in official documents he spells his name without the "c." Plenty and Dolly raised four children, Francas Leque, who became a farm laborer like his father; Rosa Leque (1871-?); Henry Leque (1876-?); and Mary Jane Leque (1878-?). The U.S. Census of 1900 lists a Plenty Lequex (1837-?) residing in St. James Goose Creek Township and married to Jennie Lequex (1865-?) with five children: Anna Maria Lequex (1887-?), Elizabeth Lequex (1889-?), Ella Nora Lequex (1892-?), William Lequex (1894-?), and Willima Lequex (1896-?). (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/M3RZ-VMJ) It is unclear if Plenty Lecque/Leque and Plenty Lequex are the same individual, however, Census records with both names do not overlap.


Collection Overview

The Lecque family papers contains historical and genealogical materials concerning the Lecque family and the community that they helped to found, Liberty Hill, South Carolina. The family has continued to play an important and active role in the development of Liberty Hill and North Charleston. This collection provides information on the family and area as researched by Ms. Carolyn Collins. The collection consists of photographs, newspaper clippings, and legal documents.

The collection is arranged into five series:

1. Historical Foundation includes articles written by local journalists including Ruth Cupp, a North Charleston lawyer and local historian, on the history of Liberty Hill, St. Peter's African Methodist Episcopal (A.M.E.) Church, and general information about the Lecque family. The series also includes St. Peter's A.M.E. Church's National Register of Historic Places application, which was submitted by Larry Stevens in 1990. Other relevant information about this application is found in the correspondence from Ruth Cupp to Stevens and Andrew Chandler, the National Register Manager about the placement of a marker.

2. Obituaries includes the biography, funeral programs, and photos of Arnold William Lecque, Sr., and his wife Wilhemena Jordan Lecque. Additionally, there is brief outline of the ancestory of Arnold Williams Lecque, Sr.

3. Correspondence contains letters from Carolyn Lecque Collins to the greetings office of Jimmy Carter's presidential administration in regards to writing a birthday greeting to Anna Lecque, her grandmother for her eighty-fourth birthday. In addition, there is a letter to Ms. Barbara S. Williams, the editor of the Post-Courier Newspaper, about her dismay that her grandfather, Arnold William Lecque, Sr., was not included in their article about important deceased citizens of the Charleston community.

4. Legal Documents contains legal records that denote the transfer of land along Montague Avenue from Rosa Lecque Wilson and Beulah Lecque Haig to Anna Lecque in 1941. Additional documents includes the deed of conveyance from Josephine E. Furman to Anna Lecque dated September 23, 1958, regarding 1.62 acres on Liberty Hill Road.

5. Family Photos includes photos of Anna Scott Lecque, Lecque children, and two photos of unknown individuals.

Collection Arrangement

1. Historical Foundation, 1986-1997

2. Obituaries, 1982-1990

3. Correspondence, 1979-1990

4. Legal Documents, 1941-1958

5. Family Photos, undated



Subject Headings

  • African Americans--Genealogy.
  • African Americans--South Carolina--Genealogy.
  • African Americans--History.
  • African American families--South Carolina--Charleston.
  • Bricklayers--South Carolina--Charleston.
  • Liberty Hill (S.C.)
  • Liberty Hill (S.C.)--Church history.
  • Liberty Hill (S.C.)--History.
  • South Carolina--History--1865-.
  • Cupp, Ruth Williams, 1928-.
  • Land titles--Registration and transfer.
  • African American Methodists.
  • African American churches.
  • African Americans--Religion.
  • Freedmen.
  • Children of freedmen.
  • Historic preservation--South Carolina--Liberty Hill.
  • Historic sites --South Carolina--Liberty Hill.
  • Historic buildings--South Carolina--Liberty Hill.


Detailed Description of the Collection

1. Historical Foundation, 1986-1997.

Box 1   Folder 1
Newspaper Clippings
Clippings are from local newspapers written by journalists including Ruth Cupp, a North Charleston lawyer and local historian, on the history of Liberty Hill, St. Peter's African Methodist Episcopal (A.M.E.) Church, and generally about the Lecque family.
Box 1   Folder 2
St. Peter's African Methodist Episcopal Church-National Register of Historic Places Application Materials, 1990
Includes correspondence to the South Carolina Department of Archives and History written by Larry Stevens, president of the Lay Organization of St. Peter's A.M.E. Church, regarding the placement of St. Peter's A.M.E. Church on the National Register of Historic Places. The application includes the location of the church, a copy of the Liberty Hill plat, and a brief history of the church. Stevens is a descendent of Ismael Grant, one of the founders of the church. The folder also contains correspondence from Ruth Cupp to Stevens and Andrew Chandler, the National Register Manager.

2. Obituaries, 1982-1990.

Box 1   Folder 3
Arnold William and Wilhemena Jordan Lecque
Contains funeral programs, photos, and biographies of Arnold William Lecque, Sr. and Wilhemena Jordan Lecque.

3. Correspondence, 1979-1990.

Box 1   Folder 4
Correpondence
Contains letters from Carolyn Lecque Collins to the greetings commitee of the Jimmy Carter presidential administration in regards to writing a birthday greeting to Anna Lecque, her grandmother for her eighty-fourth birthday. In addition, there is a letter to Ms. Barbara S. Williams, the Editor of the Post-Courier Newspaper, about her dismay about her grandfather, Arnold William Lecque Sr., not being included in their article about important deceased citizens of the Charleston community.

4. Legal Documents, 1941-1958.

Box 1   Folder 5
Land Transfer Agreements
Includes the 1941 agreement that states Rosa Lecque Wilson and Beulah Lecque Haig are transfering their two-thirds of their parent's (Minnie Lecque and Elijah Lecque) land to their sister-in-law, Anna Lecque. Additional documents include the deed of conveyance from Josephine E. Furman to Anna Lecque dated September 23, 1958, regarding 1.62 acres on Liberty Hill Road.

5. Family Photos, undated.

(Contains four photos of the Lecque family, two of them are in contained within their original frames)
Box 1   Folder 6
Lecque Family Photographs
Contains one photo of Anna Scott Lecque enclosed within orignal holder and one photo of unidentified male family member.


Administrative Information

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No restrictions.

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Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Lecque Family Papers, Avery Research Center, College of Charleston, Charleston, SC, USA.

Processing Information

Processed by Aaisha Haykal, 09,2011

Encoded by Aaisha Haykal, 09,2011

Edited by Aaron Spelbring, 05, 2013

 

 

 

 

 

 

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