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St. Julian Devine was an American politician from Charleston, South Carolina. Devine served on the Charleston City Council from 1967 to 1975, making him the African American member of the council since Reconstruction.[1][2] He also served as Mayor Pro Tem in 1975.[3]

St. Julian Devine
Personal details
St. Julian Devine

(1911-06-05)June 5, 1911
Berkeley County, South Carolina
DiedApril 27, 2000(2000-04-27) (aged 88)
Charleston, South Carolina, U.S.
Political partyDemocratic
Spouse(s)Priscilla Theresa Walton


Devine moved to Charleston as a child. His father, Paul Devine, was a political activist during Reconstruction. In 1924, St. Julian Devine joined the Marcus Garvey movement, a movement seeking to promote freedom for African Americans.[1] He would go on to own several businesses including a moving company. Devine was readily active in civic life in the African American community of Charleston, participating in organizations such as the local NAACP chapter.

In 1967, Devine ran for a seat on the city council. He received the endorsement of Mayor J. Palmer Gaillard Jr. who had previously promised to endorse an African American candidate. Devine's campaign was assisted by a young Jim Clyburn who came up with the slogan "Devine for Ward Nine." Clyburn credited the Devine campaign as the reason he got into elective politics.[4]

St. Julian Devine Community CenterEdit

The St. Julian Devine Community Center.

The City of Charleston's old trash incinerator was converted into the St. Julian Devine Community Center which now serves the local neighborhood. In 2015, the Charleston Parks Conservancy announced plans to renovate the park.[5]


  1. ^ a b "East Side History Series: St. Julian Devine and "The Great Game of Politics"". East Side History Series. Retrieved June 5, 2019.
  2. ^ "Elect First Negro To Council Since Reconstruction". JET.
  3. ^ Robert Behre, “Charleston’s City Council Draws Outside the Lines of Race,” Post and Courier, 28 February 1993.
  4. ^ Clyburn, James. Blessed experiences : genuinely Southern, proudly Black. ISBN 9781611173376. OCLC 861774777.
  5. ^ Behre, Robert. "Conservancy eyes makeover for St. Julian Devine park". Post and Courier. Retrieved June 5, 2019.