Theodore S. Calhoun and the Early Days

According to historians, information on the Calhoun family only dates back to 1842. Therefore, history on this particular family starts at that point with Theodore S. Calhoun. Theodore was somewhat an adventurist and as a young man, he lived by the rules of the sea. Traveling around the world on merchant ships, he discovered faraway lands and would bring back his adventures to the taverns of Charleston, South Carolina. Theodore had an unusually strong affection for Charleston, especially for someone who had been around the world. Perhaps it was the sea, the people, or the beautiful women... whatever the reasons, it was his preferred port of call. And on one fine morning, he met the woman that would change everything--Jenny. It was Jenny who anchored Theodore to Charleston but before they even had an opportunity to live as man and wife, war broke out and Theodore was forced to go on another adventure- - this time it was to serve a cause.

Returning from War

As the war concluded in late spring of 1865, Theodore slowly found his way back to Charleston hoping to find Jenny. War torn and weary, as Theodore approached Charleston, a woman in the distance caught his eye holding a child. As he got closer, he realized it was Jenny and there was no mistaken the child was his - George T. Calhoun. With no haste, Jenny and Theodore were married. After being reunited with his new bride and meeting his first born, George T. Calhoun, Theodore was able to quickly find odds and ends work in Charleston making a modest living. Certainly not the kind of living he envisioned for himself and his new family. Not long after, Theodore and Jenny welcomed their second son, Theodore G. Calhoun. As his adventure days became a part of his distant past, Theodore began to channel his urges of thrill seeking toward developing a liking to whiskey at the local tavern. Theodore was a resourceful and very handy man. With his new found passion for whiskey and his eagerness to make something more of himself, he taught himself how to distill and as a result, started operating a small still out of his work shed. Word quickly spread of Calhoun's whiskey in Charleston, and before long, Theodore was able to provide a more comfortable life for Jenny and the boys.

The Calhoun Bros.

Although the Calhoun boys were several years apart, they strikingly had very similar looks with personalities as different as night and day. George T. began his studies at The Citadel, The Military College of South Carolina, in 1882 and Theodore S. followed in his brother's footsteps shortly thereafter in 1885. Both brothers excelled in different areas: George in literature and Theodore in women. To get a break from studies, the brothers were often found at Ms. Jennifer's Boarding House on Bull Street. On Friday and Saturday nights, Ms. Jennifer's turned into more of a social club for cadets and young ladies. Memories and relationships would be formed during this time that would last throughout their lives... time and memories that would remain fondly for both brothers.

Prior to George's graduation in 1886, they received sad news that both of their parents died in their sleep. When the brothers arrived at their parent's house, they found their parents in bed, holding each other as if they knew God himself was coming to get them that night. The stories told by their father on his adventures and the compassion showed to them by their mother had prepared them for life.

After graduation, the brothers had moved back into their family home. Though not the best at studies, Theodore was the dreamer of the two and considered himself an ideas man-- George could not have been more opposite. As educated men, the two gained employment oddly enough as professors at The Citadel. Theodore had a knack for philosophy while George taught mathematics. Their teaching schedule afforded the brothers time to see if they could make some of Theodore's ideas come true.

As the bothers tinkered in their shed on various projects, their father's still sat idle. Though both liked the drink, but distilling was one area that neither showed interest. Their first project was a flying machine. Unlike what the Wright Brothers invented in later years - this was somewhat cruder involving a pair of big wings. Not much is known about the machine specifically because one night, the shed caught fire, destroying all inside, including their father's still. Not one for keeping secrets, Theodore confessed to George it was his fault and that he had accidentally caused the fire. While entertaining the neighbor's daughter with a candle lit picnic, a candle was knocked over during a bit of passion. Before the two lovers realized it wasn't their chemistry that was causing the room to heat up, they were left with barely enough time to escape the shed unharmed. Unfortunately for Theodore, both of them were unclothed which consequently, put him in a very difficult situation of having to explain to his neighbor why his daughter was wrapped in a blanket with nothing else.

TO BE CONTINUED...

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