The Vision of a Great Preservationist is a Reality
The vision of one of Charleston's great preservationists — the late Emily Ravenel Farrow — is a reality. To honor her wish to preserve her lands in perpetuity for the benefit and enjoyment of the citizens of Charleston, Mrs. Farrow bequeathed her beloved Ashem Farm, located along Old Towne Road in West Ashley next to Charles Towne Landing, to the Lowcountry Land Trust. The Land Trust has now transferred it to the Charleston County Park and Recreation Commission with a commitment to maintain the site as a public park for all to enjoy. During her lifetime, Mrs. Farrow ensured the permanent protection of Ashem Farm by placing a conservation easement on it through the Historic Charleston Foundation. This easement protects not only the land, but the houses she lived in throughout her lifetime.
The Charleston County Park and Recreation Commission will conduct a public master planning process for the property, which lies within the city limits of Charleston. The Park and Recreation Commission (PRC) will engage in discussions with its neighbors at Charles Towne Landing as well as work with the Land Trust and Historic Charleston Foundation to ensure the property is protected forever in the manner in which Mrs. Farrow intended.
It was Mrs. Farrow's wish that part of the property might be used for a garden in memory of her mother as the Emily Simmons Ravenel Garden. In addition to providing public access to the historic, cultural and natural beauty of this property, the waterfront access along Old Towne Creek and the Ashley River could enhance the "Blue Water Trail" planning initiatives already taking place at PRC to expand paddling opportunities for canoeists and kayakers. The site could serve as a critical access point for citizens to paddle the beautiful and historic waterways of Charleston County.
Likewise, the Land Trust will engage in a formal, strategic visioning process to fully maximize the impact of Mrs. Farrow's gift for conservation, a cause that she championed throughout her long life.