Being an avid history buff, I am continually inspired by the many ways in which the cooperative movement in America has enhanced the quality of life for so many. Whether you are talking about farmers pooling money to provide affordable credit, raising funds to deliver electricity to the rural South, or marshaling resources to open a member-owned grocery, the story of each cooperative is the story of collective effort in order to provide to the community what the free market is failing to deliver.
In the case of the now-defunct Progressive Club on John’s Island, residents pooled their resources and efforts and ended up changing the world. The co-op, located outside Charleston, became a hub of education for black citizens who wanted to learn how to pass the state’s literacy test in order to be able to vote. Continue reading