Deep roots grow under Mount Pleasant’s longtime mayor
Editor’s note: We have a very special guest who will be closing out the magazine each month. Linda Page is the long-time mayor of Mt. Pleasant, SC and she will be coming to us with her words of wisdom and charm in the Parting Thoughts section of Mount Pleasant Lifestyle. I’ll let her introduce herself here.
My parents were gypsies who wandered the country in search of opportunity. Luckily for me they were literally stuck in Mount Pleasant because the travel trailer we called home wasn’t able to cross the Grace Memorial Bridge. I was six weeks old at the time. Mom and Dad quickly made friends and settled into the slow pace of the Lowcountry. They opened businesses here and raised my two brothers and me to become ingrained in this promising community.
I was a tow headed brat running barefoot up and down Coleman Blvd. for most of my youth. We lived for several years on Sullivan’s Island in a converted waste management building, a remnant from the island’s days as a military base. Those days in the 1960’s are some of my fondest with memories: playing in tidal pools, catching our supper in the surf, and scouring the sand dunes in search of horned toads, blackberries, and sour grass ~ but Mount Pleasant was always home. We moved back to the mainland in 1967, when the population was around 5,500.
Our family ran Page’s Thieves Market in several different locations on Coleman Blvd. before settling in to the old Thomas-Simmons Lumber Yard in 1964. Indeed, the Simmons family still owns the property, and my hopes are that we remain here at 1460 Ben Sawyer for at least two more years until the lease ends.
Images of my youth come straight out of the typical great novel about small towns in the South, complete with high school football heroes, colorful characters galore, shrimpers, and even a town drunk (or two). By and large the social fabric of our community was woven with callused hands of hard workers who wished for their children’s lives to be better than their own.
As for me, I decided to enter the family business with my brothers. I married and had two children, and have run the Thieves Market since 1981. My brothers also went on to open businesses here.
And strange as it seems, I live a few blocks away from where I started out, quite near Mount Pleasant Academy in the Old Village with my daughter, Audrey, and our animal menagerie. Writing this column will give me the opportunity to share some story time with you each month and continue the discussion of what my Mount Pleasant Lifestyle is to you and your family. And please remember ~ don’t just live, create a life.