Tuesday, April 21, 2015

“Charleston is an Extraordinary Place”

One of the first things on our agenda after arriving in Charleston was to take another tour.  When we start with CHS1__21tours we can usually figure out where to go next.     This time it was a little different.  You can get off and on the trolleys in Charleston and they are free but the driver doesn’t double as a tour guide.   

We considered  hopping a carriage but then we were concerned that the weather forecasters might be right and it really might rain hard. Instead we decided to go with Adventure Sightseeing.   Now the tour guide was very good.  She told us a lot about the historical area as we drove through it.  The bus itself needed quite a bit of inside work. Just about everything appeared to need a good cleaning or be replaced. 

CHS1__6The tour usually returns to the Visitor’s Center but we got off at the Old Market in the Historical District instead.  There we could revisit the places we wanted to see a little more of.  It also gave us a chance to get a bite to eat and walk through the Old Market.

Notice the houses appear to be built sideways on the street and that the front door isn’t really a door to anything except to the front porch.  We discovered there is a reason for this.  The doors were left open if they were accepting company.  Horses were the main mode of transportation at the time these homes were built.  Thus, clean-up didn’t always happen and the heat and humidity at times made the street odors unbearable.  Keeping the front door closed helped keep the odors out. 

CHS1__27 CHS1__28
Besides that taxes on those houses were assessed by the amount of street space they took up.  Thus, they were built with the narrowest side of the home on the street. 

There were also many of the older homes who had survived the 7.3 earthquake.  In order to strengthen the homes, earthquake bolts were installed in some of them to secure the bricks should another earthquake occur.  These bolts closed gaps in the bricks and actually worked.

CHS1__3 CHS1__4

Many of the Charleston streets had beautiful gardens and walkways.

CHS1__39 CHS1__32 CHS1__37


We also visited the Citadel.  Remember the story years back when a female applicant was accepted in error?  There was quite a stir on that.  Now about 10% of the students at The Citadel are female.




The homes in the Historic District are very expensive.  Many   are being refurbished.  The cost of refurbishing is nothing to sneeze at either. 


This church is St. John’s Lutheran Church and it even has red doors. We were told the red doors indicated the building was paid for.

Well, the weatherman had forecast rain and storms to start rolling into Charleston after 10:00 AM. We had finished touring for the day and back at the motorhome before any rain started falling.   We were under a severe storm and tornado watch late afternoon and evening.  The clouds unloaded all the water they were holding.  It was a definitely a downpour.  Along with that rain came wind and terrific thunder and lightening and it was right on top of us.  We thought the thunder would never stop but would rather have that thunder than the tornados that were possible.  


The forecast the next day was about the same but it was mostly wrong. There was no rain and there was no storm.   I think the storms have now blown out to sea.  I hope that’s true, at least.

What did we think of Charleston?  We loved it.  However, now it was time to move on but we didn’t head exactly due north up the coast as we had planned.  We had a little detour and headed northwest about 67 miles instead.  What’s with that?

Well, Orangeburg, SC is where my family first settled when they made the journey across theOrng1__12 Atlantic in 1752.  We were so close and we just had to make a stop.   First, we discovered Orangeburg had an Elks and that Elks had 5 sites with partial hookups.  That sounded great to us.

Can you see us hiding there?  We thought it was perfect.


Orng1__13  There was one place in particular I wanted to visit and it was the Salley Archives which is operated by the Historical Society in Orangeburg.  This building was built about where the first church in town, St. John’s Lutheran Church (eventually became Episcopal), once stood.  The Old Pioneer Cemetery was established in 1749 and is behind it.  Some pioneers are in marked graves but many more were buried there that no longer have markers.   Perhaps, some of my family were put to rest there … perhaps.


I spent an awful lot of time here  -------- > 

Orng1__5For such a small town population-wise, Orangeburg certainly seemed to be spread out and have lots of traffic.  We attempted to check out as much as we could.  Eventually it was time to find a local restaurant.  We discovered FATZ Café and had no idea it was a chain until we asked.  The food was definitely good and we finally got to taste a mustard based BBQ sauce.  Now we know to order it again!  Of course, I was only allowed to nibble but the box I took home should last two days.
PS …. I didn’t eat the fries.

I have discovered that South Carolina mosquitoes love me.  
Next, we hear North Carolina calling.

‘Tis life on the road.


  1. Charleston, such a place. We've visited dozens of times and still have lots more to see. Glad you enjoyed your tiny slice of it. Good reason to return again and again. Maybe we'll be able to work all the West Coast out of you... :cD

    1. You are right. We saw just a small slice of it. West Coast 2016?

  2. So wonderful scenerey along the way you are enjoying.
    Ps: couple fries won't hurt.

    1. Well, I did eat one fry but it was the ribs I couldn't say "no" to.

  3. We really enjoyed a walk around downtown Charleston a couple of years ago. It is a wonderful city.

  4. Love the gardens and the old homes, they give such a different feel for a city. Glad the second storm never found you, the first one sounded like plenty! It's pretty amazing that you were in the small town where your ancestors first settled in this country. I would have to check every gravestone!

  5. How do you get the willpower? I just have to avoid restaurants. If they put it in front of me, I eat it. I can control things when I'm cooking.

  6. Really interesting stories of the houses. Pretty.

    I gather you are back at it. As soon as I am well, I will attempt to too.

  7. Glad the second storm missed you. Wish the first one did as well. Tornadoes in RVs are scary.

  8. Very interesting fact about building the shortest wall along the road. Great info on the church doors.

    I didn't know you could actually walk the grounds of The Citadel.

    How cool to visit the home of your first fathers.

  9. You have to go to the Outer Banks while visiting North Carolina...stay at a very expensive but nice resort, Camp Hatteras and say hi to Jeanette. Stay a few days and take the ferry to Ocracoke Island which is the hideout of Edward Teach aka Blackbeard, visit Kitty Hawk, home of the Wright Brothers Memorial and so much more! Check out our blog for all the places we seen while we worked there the summer of 2011! Can't be that close and miss this very special place, as long as a hurricane is not heading your way it is spectacular!


Thanks for taking the time to comment.