Thursday, April 24, 2014

A Voyage Back In Time.....

Happy Thursday afternoon everyone.  We were up and about early today since it was announced here at HBSP the water would be cut off about 9 a.m. this morning for three or so hours to fix a water leak.  

Our plans for today were to travel back to Brookgreen Gardens to take a boat tour of a few of the former rice fields, and to learn a little of the history of the area.  

It seems long before Brookgreen Gardens came to be owned by the Huntingtons, it was first virgin bald cypress swamps.  

Prior to the Revolutionary War, major land grants were given, the area settled, slaves imported, virgin cypress swamps drained, cleared, a system of dikes built, water trunks (gates) installed, and finally rice was grown.  Whew, I need to sit down and rest from just typing all of this activity.  

This morning we learned that prior to the Civil War, rice was the king crop  here in the low-country of South Carolina.  This was a labor intensive industry, with slaves being the primary source of the labor.  The rice fields ranged from 40 - 70 acres in size and took anywhere from 5 - 15 years to clear and build before the first rice seed was planted.

Needless to say, this area is rich in history.  It went from being swamps, to the richest area of the United States prior to the Civil War, to one of the poorest areas in the decades following the Civil War.  

Rob took lots of pictures of course and here are a few......

Sadly, this is our last day here at HBSP.  It's been a great week to be at the coast.  In the morning we load up and head back home.  

Until next time, stay safe out there.....-R,T,&J.

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