South Carolina has a variety of national parks that cover Revolutionary War history, Civil War sites, and even a site that focuses on the period after the Civil War known as Reconstruction.
With beautiful natural scenery, a range of recreational opportunities and some of the most historic American historical sites, there is something for everyone in South Carolina. So grab your bags and get ready for an adventure!
Kings Mountain National Military Park is a must see for anyone who enjoys Revolutionary War history. It has a great museum, paved and dirt trails, a good gift shop, and a very well done movie about the battle.
The ridge upon which the famous Revolutionary War battle was fought has not changed much since 1780. A large monument commemorates the victory which turned the tide of the southern campaign of the American Revolution.
Besides the monument, the park features a very well developed museum which has plenty of interesting information on the history of the battle and the turn of events that followed it. Exhibits include a diorama, typical arms of the mountain men, and an electric map of their route of march.
In addition, the park offers a nice living history farm which recreates the life style of 19th century Piedmont farmers and craftsmen. Guests can also enjoy hiking, picnicking, fishing from rental jon boats, seasonal canoe rentals, and equestrian trails.
Ninety Six National Historic Site is home to the Star Fort, one of the best-preserved Revolutionary War earthen forts. It is located on South Carolina Highway 248 3.3 kilometers (2 miles) south of the present-day town of Ninety Six.
It was here that the first battles outside of New England were fought in November 1775 and in May and June 1781, American general Nathanael Greene staged the longest field siege of the Revolutionary War. Loyalists resisted until Lord Rawdon, with 2,000 British troops, marched to relieve the garrison.
Visitors can take a one-mile interpretive trail that takes them to the remains of Star Fort as well as the site of the 18th century village it protected. There are also two off-road trails weaving through the woods that give you a better feel for the land once traveled by settlers, traders and Cherokee Indians.
The Gullah Geechee National Heritage Corridor is one of the 40 congressionally designated National Heritage Areas that combine natural, historic, and scenic resources to form a cohesive, nationally significant landscape. These areas are known for their capacity to tell important stories about our nation's past, and they remain vitally important in today's world.
The people of the Gullah Geechee are descendants of enslaved Africans brought from West Africa to work on rice and indigo plantations in the St. Johns River region of Florida and the Cape Fear River in North Carolina.
They combined the language, food and religion of their native Africa with the experiences they were forced to take on in America, resulting in a rich and distinct culture. Many Gullah Geechees still speak a blend of their indigenous African language and are skilled in creating traditional African-styled arts and crafts.
The Gullah Geechee Culture is based on farming and fishing, rooted in family, faith, education and a creole language. It is the oldest surviving culture of African descent in the United States, and it has been influenced by other cultures around the globe.
Located in Mount Pleasant, Snee Farm National Historic Site preserves a portion of Charles Pinckney's plantation and country retreat. A member of a prominent political family, Pinckney fought in the American Revolutionary War, was held for a period as a prisoner in the North, and returned to South Carolina in 1783.
The historic site is now managed by the National Park Service, which interprets the remnants of Pinckney's coastal plantation and his role in the development of the Constitution. It also tells the stories of enslaved African Americans who lived on Lowcountry plantations during this time.
The house built for Pinckney in 1828 was sold to several owners over the years, but remained intact until 1986 when it was bought by C and G Investments and restored by Joyce Hollowell. It was eventually transferred to the National Park Service in 1988. Today, the 28-acre core of Snee Farm is operated as a historic site with interpretive exhibits and ranger-led programs.