3 Willard Hirsch Sculpture, City Hall Park
4 Francis Salvador Memorial, City Hall Park
Judah P. Benjamin Memorial
The family of Judah Philip Benjamin emigrated from St. Croix in the Danish West Indies to Charleston around 1821, when the boy would have been about 10 years old. His father, Philip, was one of the founders of the Reformed Society of Israelites, while his mother, Rebecca, as a femme sole—a woman granted the right to own property or run a business on her own—provided for the family. Leaving Charleston in 1825 for Yale, Benjamin eventually moved to Louisiana, married a Catholic woman, became a U.S. Senator, and served in Jefferson Davis’s Confederate government as attorney general, secretary of war, and secretary of state. His face adorns the Confederate two-dollar bill. After the South’s defeat, he fled the country and led a successful career in England as a barrister.
In 2010, Michael Kogan, a descendant of Confederate Jews, helped pay for the restoration of a fountain in the courtyard of the Dock Street Theatre in Benjamin’s memory. Charleston artist Mary Walker was commissioned by the city to create tiles replicating the fountain’s painted fresco, originally created in 1937 by William Halsey, whose mother was Jewish and whose murals grace the social hall of Kahal Kadosh Beth Elohim.