The Charles Towne Landing Visitors Center has an incredible exhibit showcasing the Carolina beginnings. Step in the shoes of white English settlers, Native Americans, or African slaves and experience first hand how life was like in the late 17th century.
• How much money can you make if you were a woman?
• What skills were most sought after?
• What kind of crops and trade were the most lucrative?
• How much land can you own as an indentured servant?
• What were the interactions between the settlers and the Native Americans?
• What kind of wildlife roamed the Carolina Coast back then?
There are incredible drawings, artifacts and recollections that paint a vivid image of our primordial past. Here is just a sample:
The cash crop of the Barbados that started it all…
On March 15, 1670 The Carolina finally made it to shore.
“Everywhere they looked, they saw chattering flocks of birds, small game such as rabbits and squirrels, and rivers filled with fish and turtles…they saw miles of unspoiled, seemingly uninhabited land and unlimited potential for their future lives.”
The Cassique of the Kiawah welcomed the white settlers and trading of furs and Indian slaves soon flourished. One settler recollects “…when we came a shoare they stroked us on ye shoulders with their hands saying Bony Conraro Angles, knowing us to English be our collours (as wee supposed) we then gave them Brass rings & tobacco at which they seem well pleased…”
Here’s a look at how the Albermarle Point colony developed during its first 10 years.
The white English settlers tried to replicate the Barbados style colonial plantations, were indentured servants, and especially African slaves, did the all the work: building houses, working the fields and harvesting the crops. They tried to grow tobacco, indigo, rice, sugar, olives, grapes, flax and cotton.
Slaves were brought in from Barbados to work on the new colony. Soon their contribution became indispensable, yet they lived under miserable and inhumane conditions, never allowed to own land or benefit from their hard work.
Wildlife was abundant along the Carolina coast. However the very lucrative fur trade lead to ravage hunting and the agricultural expansion to massive deforestation, negatively impacting the fragile ecosystem. Many species declined and some went extinct.
“…The Healthfulness of the Air; the Fertility of the Earth and Waters, and the great Pleasure and Profit will accrue to those that shall go thither to enjoy the fame”
History is great, but what about the children?
Relax, there is plenty of activities to enjoy throughout the park. Here are just a few fun things kids can do inside Charles Towne Landing.
History buffs rejoice! Visit Dorchester State Historic Park (only half an hour away, $2 admission) one of the most prolific archaeological sites on early colonial life. Most Saturdays you can observe archaeologists sifting through the remains of a town that included houses, markets, a school, a church, a boat yard and more.
Be a proud Carolinian at the historic Charles Towne Landing!
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