Thursday, October 27, 2011

Sweet Caroline - or Carolina, in this Case

Our 38th state may be my most difficult challenge as it will (hopefully) result in a 100k bike ride. In keeping with the educational side of this blog - you know, hoping that my daughters will learn something from this experience other than how to pack - I'll leave you with some fun facts about South Carolina.

1. The walls of the American fort on Sullivan Island, in Charleston Harbor, were made of spongy Palmetto logs. This was helpful in protecting the fort because the British cannonballs bounced off the logs.

2. South Carolina entered the Union on May 23, 1788 and became the 8th state.

3. The state dance of South Carolina is the Shag!

4. Before being known as the Palmetto State, South Carolina was known as, and had emblazoned on their license plates, the Iodine State.

5. Tyler Brothers Work Shoe and Boot Company in Wagener produces 8 major brands of OSHA approved safety footwear, including such famous brands as Redwing, Georgia, Northlake, and Wolverine.

6. The Edisto River Canoe & Kayak Trail covers 66 miles of the river for which it's named. The Edisto is reputed to be the world's longest free-flowing "blackwater" stream. "Blackwater" is a term that not only describes the color of the tannin-rich water, but also refers to the peaceful rate of flow that characterizes such rivers.

7. The Isle of Palms was originally named Hunting Island and then Long Island, it's thought to be at least 25,000 years old, and was first inhabited by the indigenous Seewee Indians.

8. Sweetgrass basket making has been a part of the Mount Pleasant community for more than 300 years. Basket making is a traditional art form that has been passed on from generation to generation.

9. Fountain Inn is proud of the town's most famous native son. Clayton "Peg Leg" Bates lost his leg in a cotton gin accident at the age of 12; he overcame his tragedy to become a famous dancer. His signature step was the "Imitation American Jet Plane," in which he would jump five feet in the air and land on his peg leg, with his good leg sticking out straight behind him. During his career, Bates performed more than 20 different times on the Ed Sullivan television show more than any other artist.

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