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April 1, 1983 - A Look At Old Capitol Street
By Heath Harrison
May 19, 2013


Capitol Street and the surrounding area have changed a lot over the past few decades, but few changes had as much of an impact on the area as the opening of Charleston Town Center, which drew city shoppers away from what had been the hub of downtown Charleston shopping for decades.

Facing new competition from Town Center, as well as shopping locations such as the Kanawha Mall and a newly-expanded Patrick Street plaza, many businesses in the Capitol Street area would either close down or relocate in the following years,.

This week’s video consists of two segments. The first is a WCHS report from April 1, 1983, gathering thoughts of area merchants as they anticipated the opening of the mall seven months later.

The second segment comes to us courtesy of photojournalist Rodney Morrison. His short film of downtown Charleston in the early 1980s has been a big hit on Youtube (If you haven’t seen it, it’s available here). After a short excerpt of his film showing a drive down Capitol Street, we see some additional footage of downtown that didn’t make the Youtube cut. The Diamond had just closed around the time this was filmed (the out-of-business signs are still visible in the windows), so it can probably be dated to mid-1983.

Remember When: April 1, 1983 - A Look At Old Capitol Street

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