Steps Thru Time

Where to see more South Carolina history

Dr. Walter Edgar—historian, author and barbecue judge—recommends these important South Carolina historic sites.

Redcliffe PlantationOld Slave Mart, Charleston  Now a museum, the state’s last known slave auction house., 843-958-6467

Kershaw-Cornwallis House, Camden  Lord Cornwallis scored major victories here and headquartered in this home., 803-432-9841 

Redcliffe Plantation, Beech Island  The home of Sen. James Henry Hammond, who famously proclaimed “Cotton Is King” in Congress. House, slave-cabin tours, heirloom garden., 803-827-1473

Charles Towne Landing State Historic Site, Charleston  The Carolinas’ first permanent European settlement. Museum, history trails, animal forest., 843-852-4200

Woodrow Wilson Family Home, Columbia  Childhood home of President Woodrow Wilson, including the bed in which he was born., 803-252-7742

C.S.S. Hunley, North Charleston  Plucked from the ocean floor in 2000, the Confederate States Submarine Hunley, considered the first to sink an enemy ship, rests in a museum., 877-448-6539

Hampton Plantation State Historic Site, McClellanville  President George Washington stood on the mansion’s porch in 1791. Now visitors can, too., 843-546-9361

Burt-Stark Mansion, Abbeville  Fleeing south, President Jefferson Davis led the final cabinet meeting of the Confederacy in its parlor., 864-366-0166

Snee Farm, Mt. Pleasant  Snee Farm belonged to Charles Pinckney, a signer of the US Constitution. Gullah programs, including sweetgrass basket making, are featured., 843-881-5516

Stumphouse TunnelOld Exchange & Provost Dungeon, Charleston  Animatronic pirate stories in a 1771 jail and customshouse., 843-727-2165

Stumphouse Tunnel, Walhalla  Located in a Blue Ridge mountain, the tunnel was to connect Charleston to Knoxville, but the Civil War stopped work. Now it’s more than 1,000 feet long and open to the public., 864-888-1488

Musgrove Mill State Historic Site, Clinton  A fierce battle between Patriots and Loyalists occurred here in 1780. Visitors center, river walk., 864-938-0100

Rivers Bridge State Historic Site, Bamberg  Still-intact earthen fortifications at this secluded site speak silently to fierce resistance met by Sherman’s forces as they entered South Carolina., 803-267-3675

Brookgreen Gardens/Atalaya, Murrells Inlet  Atalaya “castle” at what is now Huntington Beach State Park was winter home to sculptor/philanthropist Anna Hyatt and Archer Huntington. Brookgreen Gardens contains the nation’s largest outdoor sculpture collection., 843-235-6000;, 843-237-4440

Hunting Island Lighthouse, Hunting Island  Built in 1875 to replace one destroyed by retreating Confederates, the lighthouse stands 132 feet and is the only in the state open to the public., 843-838-2011