The Cigar Factory, a formerly vacant historic building in downtown Charleston, S.C., that’s now a high-end mixed-used development, was recently recognized as one of “Preservation’s Best of 2015” by Preservation Action, the National Trust for Historic Preservation and the National Trust Community Investment Corporation.

The five-story, 244,000-square-foot structure features 341 custom-made, thermally broken, aluminum historic replication windows by Graham Architectural Products. The building’s owners were seeking tax credits for the project, so the National Park Service had to approve the windows. Additionally, the regional code calls for hurricane-resistant fenestration products, and many of the openings were over ten feet tall – a real challenge when working with impact glass.

Despite that, Graham says it met a tight deadline by customizing its HI 2200H Series single hung and HI 6800 series fixed windows for the retrofit project.

Charlotte Glass Contractors handled the installation.

“It’s a terrific building, and we’re proud to have been a part of the team,” says Tim Cooper, Graham’s southeast regional sales manager.

The Cigar Factory was originally built in 1881 as a cotton mill, but in the early 1900s it was converted into a factory for the American Tobacco Company. During a strike by the mostly African-American staff in 1945, an early version of the protest song We Shall Overcome was sung for the first time in an act of civil disobedience. It eventually became the anthem of the civil rights movement in the U.S. in the 1950s and ‘60s.