Berkeley County, South Carolina

Where education meets adventure

11/15/2012
Field Trip Destination

Berkeley County is the ideal place for students seeking adventure and education in non-traditional forms. Enjoy yourself on the blackwater swamps at Cypress Gardens while spending the day learning about wildlife from butterflies and beetles to turtles and alligators. Visit the Heritage Room which features unearthed artifacts from Dean Hall Plantation which dates back to the 1700s. The Heritage Room also features the largest collection in the United States of Colonoware — a low-fired, locally made pottery that was made by both free and enslaved African Americans. Cypress Gardens offers a variety of programs for groups of all ages. For more information visit www.cypressgardens.info.

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And if history is your thing, the Old Santee Canal Park should definitely be on the must-see list! Learn about the first true canal in America located on 195 acres. See the first semi-submersible torpedo boat, CSS Little David, that was built right here on the plantation.

Enjoy enriched educational experiences at the Old Santee Canal Park. The park, which sits on the historic Stony Landing Plantation, was an important site for trade and transportation since colonial times. You will find a 19th century plantation house, four miles of boardwalk that brings you face-to-face with nature. Brilliant at any time of the year, the canal bed can actually be seen at Biggins Swamp.

Our impressive 11,000 square foot Interpretive Center tells the story of the engineering feat of digging a canal from the state’s midlands to the Cooper River. The Interpretive Center houses cultural and natural history exhibits, an interactive computer, live snake exhibits and more. Two theaters feature nature and history films.

Educational programs highlight a wide range of historical events which took place on or around Stony Landing Plantation, such as children’s life, archaeology and canal history. Environmental programs emphasize the vast diversity of plant and animal life found throughout the park, including insects, reptiles, trees and wetlands.

The 5600 exhibit Berkeley Museum, located in Old Santee Canal Park, traces the area’s history back 12,000 years. From the Native American residents of the Ice Age, to the famed “Swamp Fox” Francis Marion’s battles during the American Revolution, to the planters who settled the area, the Berkeley Museum provides an entertaining and lively perspective of Berkeley County’s rich and exciting history. For tour information, visit www.oldsanteecanalpark.org.

Berkeley County is rich in history and legends. The churches date back from the 1700s and have been maintained where locals and visitors can step back into time. The St. Stephen Episcopal Church dates back early 1700s and is maintained in its original condition, with beautiful stained glass windows and original wood work throughout the church. At Strawberry Chapel you can view the holding tombs and also hear the story of “Little Miss Chicken” about a teacher during the 1700s who tied a young girl to one of the tombstones over night.

When viewing the St. James Church located in Goose Creek, South Carolina you will be transported to the time when ladies wore long flowing gowns and men wore long tails and vest. This gives groups and visitors a feeling of the time when we were forming our nation.

Berkeley County is home to 16 of the 166 battle sites of the South Carolina’s Revolutionary War Sites and home to the legendary “Swamp Fox,” General Francis Marion. Marion is credited for developing the first guerilla war tactics that kept the British searching the forest and swamps for his elusive militia.

Added to all of this would you like to hear stories at the grave or a battle site of the elusive “Swamp Fox” General Francis Marion, whose life has been portrayed through several movies? Or how about the plantation site of Henry Laurens who was captured during the Revolutionary War, placed in the Tower of London and later exchanged for General Cornwallis?

Add any of these great story telling options to your visit to Berkeley County’s other attractions and events in nearby Historic Charleston or Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. The possibilities of a wonderful new educational adventure in Berkeley County are unlimited.

For information on Berkeley County, SC call 843-761-8238 or visit www.visitberkeleycounty.com.
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Issue 18.3 | Winter/Spring 2017

Southeast Education Network

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