Toward the northern end of a peninsula at the confluence of the Cooper and Ashley Rivers in South Carolina lies Hampton Park. The history of this tract of land holds poignant historical meaning this weekend. Like many other coastal areas prior to the American Revolution, the soils of this region were used for agriculture but now serve home to major cities – in this case, Charleston.
In that era, the acreage was a privately-owned orange plantation. Having been abandoned in the buildup to the Siege of Charleston, the tract was later purchased by the South Carolina Jockey Club after the war. The outfit's "Charleston Race Course" was transformed some three decades later to a prison for Union soldiers during the Civil War. Tragically, more than 250 perished inside the prison and were buried en masse in an unmarked grave.
Just a few days prior to the end of the Civil War, on May 1, 1865, African American residents of Charleston organized a May Day ceremony on the grounds. Planting flowers and trees to improve what became an enclosed area marked for the "Martyrs of the Race Course," nearly 10,000 gathered carrying flowers to plant in memory of the soldiers who died. Word of the event spread after the New York Tribune penned a story, and 152 years later we still celebrate Memorial Day annually on the final Monday of May.
This weekend we remember our friends and family members who not only served in the armed forces but also died in order to preserve the life we have come to know. Plant some flowers this weekend if you feel so obliged. There's no better time in the season and no better reason than in remembrance.
Jimmy Hinton serves as managing director of HFF and is responsible for the firm’s national research efforts. Mr. Hinton works with the executive management team to assist in investor relations and to inform both HFF staff and firm clients with in-depth analysis of economic, property and capital market trends. He is also responsible for providing extensive market reports, client presentations and deal-specific analysis for debt placement and investment sales assignments. Mr. Hinton’s responsibilities include substantial interaction with pension funds, life insurance companies, regional and CMBS lenders, REITs, foreign investors and private equity funds.
During his tenure at HFF, Mr. Hinton has supported the execution of more than 150 commercial real estate transactions totaling more than $4.5 billion in 20 states. Mr. Hinton has experience in fixed- and adjustable-rate debt, mezzanine debt, construction loans and joint venture executions on behalf of clients engaged in the acquisition, development and recapitalization of property types including multi-housing, industrial, office, retail, medical office and storage properties.