Start: Charleston, SC
End: Columbia, SC
Miles Driven: 165.1 (9987.2 total)
An ice storm in North Carolina prevented us from driving to our next destination today, so we were stranded in South Carolina for a cold and rainy day. Luckily, we found some good indoor activities for the day which started at the Karpeles Museum just as it was opening. David Karpeles holds the world's largest private collection of manuscripts, and today on display was a special exhibit of maps of the United States from as early as 1507. We also visited Gaillard Auditorium to see a powerful collection of photographs taken by children reflecting the dilapidated conditions of schools in the state's poorest school districts.
Our next stop was the home of former Governor and Declaration of Independence signer John Rutledge. While most of the historic houses in Charleston charge entrance fees to tour the building, the mansion is now an inn so we were free to tour the lobby and ballroom to see beautiful chandeliers, antique furniture, and intricate woodwork from the floor to ceiling.
Having run out of free, indoor activities in Charleston, we drove to Columbia to see the State House. As we entered the lobby we saw a group of people gathering, waiting for what we assumed was the 3:00 tour. Turns out we actually happened upon a presentation of surveying licenses, and the other people with cameras were not fellow sightseers, but rather proud family and friends. We snuck away and took a self-guided tour instead, seeing the House and Senate Chambers, the points of the State House facade struck by General Sherman's cannon fire during the Civil War, and statues of George Washington, John C. Calhoun, and South Carolina's favorite son, Strom Thurmond.
Today was also the day we saw our first New Hampshire license plate outside of New England. We really are getting closer to home.