Asterisk denotes entries on real places.
Opposite Porgy’s room is the cookshop run by Clara, who constantly struggles to impose order on Catfish Row. The Row is near the wharf and the bay. When a hurricane comes, its residents flee to upper stories of their buildings to escape the rising waters.
*Charleston. South Carolina port city. Some critics have said that one of the central ideas behind Porgy involves the conflict between the recently emancipated black residents of Catfish Row and the modern city in which they live. When members of the African American organization called “Sons and Daughters of Repent Ye Saith the Lord” parade through the “reticent, old Anglo-Saxon town” on their way to greet a steamer, the white residents of Charleston laugh at them. The African Americans appear sadly out of place in the city. Porgy does his begging in the white section of the city, on the corner of King Charles Street and Meeting House Road. When he is presented with a summons to appear in Coroner’s Court to identify Crown–whom he has killed when the latter tried to break into his room–he flees up Meeting House Road toward the forests, in which he hopes to hide. A police patrol wagon catches him after he gets beyond the big buildings to where the bungalows stand.
Wharf. Pier adjacent to Catfish Row where stevedores, including Crown, find work and the base for the “Mosquito Fleet”–a flotilla of small fishing boats owned and manned by African Americans. During the hurricane, the entire fleet is destroyed. During a lull in the storm, when Clara sees her husband Jake’s half-submerged boat approaching the wharf, she runs into the water and drowns, leaving Bess behind to care for her baby. When the full fury of the storm returns, a lumber schooner breaks loose and destroys the wharf itself.
Jail. Charleston jail in which both Bess and Porgy spend time. It is has a small exercise yard where prisoners spend their days trying to keep in the shade. At night, prisoners are locked in what appears to be a steel cage. The jail is damp; moisture clings to its ceilings, runs down its walls, and forms small streams that run across its floor. The jail smells terrible and breeds disease.
Kittiwar Island. Fictional island off Charleston on which Crown is hiding out and to which a steamer transports members of the Sons and Daughters of Repent Ye Saith the Lord for a picnic. When Bess wanders into the island’s jungle, Crown finds her and takes her deeper into the interior, where he has his way with her.
*Savannah. Georgia coastal city to which Crown promises to take Bess when he leaves Kittiwar Island and the place to which Bess goes while Porgy is in jail.