Plantation Life Collection
Georgetown County is blessed with thousands of acres of land in a varying range of ecosystems ranging from swamp-marsh, pine forests, and hardwood forests but this last has long since been harvested out. On these lands sprung up plantations of vast acreage growing crops of indigo, rice and cotton along with vegetable gardens and necessary outbuildings to support the families and slaves. The Museum has articles from both the agricultural lives and the personal lives of these plantation families and laborers which they used every day in the home and field.
On display is a model of a device known as a “trunk dock” that was used in the early 1800’s to control the flow of water onto the rice fields during the growing season. The idea for this ingenious device was brought from Africa and perfected here on the plantation canals and creeks. It allowed water to flow into the fields and locked the water in for a period of time, then released the water and blocked it out. The trunk docks were unique to the rice planters of this area.
On the personal side, the Museum has collected articles of clothing from the ladies and gentlemen of the early eras. Work clothes of the slaves have been obtained and bear original buttons. Work tools, kitchen implements, items for entertainment and pleasure as well as necessity are displayed. Many items of personal care and social life can be seen. Excavations have turned up a myriad of pottery and china ware used by the families in “days of old” .
The Museum is proud to display items and articles from plantations such as Chicora Wood, Lark Hill, Hopsewee, Rosemont, and Belle Isle.