Five Wacky and Delightful South Carolina Museums

By:Kerry Egan

Date:3/7/2016

Not all museums are serious. Explore these five kooky, whimsical museums on your next South Carolina vacation. Behind each are charming stories of people who loved something unusual, and spent their lives pursuing their love.

J’s Tea-rific Teapot Museum

It’s unlikely you’ll mistake J’s Tea-rific Teapot Museum in Elloree for any other museum or business—it’s housed in a big 20-foot long blue teapot. The museum is the labor of love of Dr. Julian Boland and his wife, Sybil. Their collection of thousands of teapots is lovingly displayed by theme, and their museum is free to the public. Dr. Boland died a few years ago, but Sybil continues to offer charming and witty tours of the museum. By appointment only. (803) 829-2944

Button King Museum

A salute and testament to chronic insomnia, Button King Dalton Stevens began his quirky collection when he couldn’t sleep at night more than 30 years ago. He began sewing and gluing buttons onto clothing to pass the time. Decades later, his Bishopville museum showcases dozens and dozens of button-embellished items, including the button-covered suit that started it all, a piano, a Chevy Chevette, a coffin and a hearse. Stevens still welcomes visitors to his museum, in a building next to his home.

Kazoobie Kazoo Museum and Factory Tour

The kazoo is a distinctly American instrument, invented in Macon, Ga., but the only kazoos still manufactured in the US today are made in gorgeous Beaufort by Kazoobie Kazoos. You can take a tour of the kazoo factory and make your own, custom kazoo there, and also learn everything you could want about this quirky instrument at the Kazoo Museum.

Ripley’s Believe it or Not Odditorium

For most of his adult life, Robert Ripley traveled the world looking for the strange, the odd, the amazing and the breathtaking. He collected it all and sent it back the US. Some of his remarkable collection can be seen right on Ocean Boulevard in Myrtle Beach. From a two-headed goat to paintings on spider webs and a shrunken head Ripley himself collected on a trip to South America, the Odditorium is a museum like no other.

World of Energy

A museum at a nuclear power plant? Why, yes! World of Energy, a free museum dedicated to electricity and nuclear power is located right at the Oconee Nuclear Station in Seneca. You can even step right outside to the viewing platforms to watch the three nuclear reactors.

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Discover Fun and History in Small-Town South Carolina's Museums
Small-town South Carolina is full of fun and interesting places to learn about and experience history and culture.
Visit the Button Museum
For the past 15 years, Dalton Stevens has been putting buttons on just about anything he can find. You can see many of his creations, including a hearse, an outhouse and a coffin (all covered in colorful buttons), at the Button Museum in Bishopville.
Enjoy The Ripley’s Believe it or Not! Museum
Explore Ripley’s Believe it or Not! Museum in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina - an outrageous “odditorium” filled with unbelievable oddities.

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Duke Energy's World of Energy
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Located on Lake Keowee beside the Oconee Nuclear Station, Duke Energy's World of Energy is an education center with self-guided exhibits that teach visitors of all ages h ...
Ripley's Believe It Or Not Museum
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Experience a unique self-guided tour through this fabulous museum of the weird, incredible, rare and unbelievable, featuring 14 unique galleries, with over 500 of amazing ...
Button Museum
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Buttons, buttons, and more buttons are what you can find here at the Button Museum. Dalton King, the creative genius behind this must-see attraction, has covered a hearse ...

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