Edisto Island Area
Edisto Island Museum
8123 Chisolm Plantation Rd., T-Th-S 1-4 pm, Call for Summer hours: (843)869-1954. Exhibits of sea island plantation life, Civil War & Native American displays.
Admission Fee. www.edistomuseum.com.
Botany Bay Plantation
Hwy 174, Edisto Island, (843)953-9300. Botany Bay Plantation, a 4,630-acre tract located on Edisto Island, is now open for public access. The ecologically and historically significant property was privately maintained until recently by former owner, Margaret Pepper. The late Mrs. Pepper preserved the natural integrity of the land and fostered a diverse array of habitats including maritime forests, salt marsh, tidal creeks, freshwater ponds and hammock islands. The tract is now managed by S.C. Department of Natural Resources (DNR) as a part of the agency’s Wildlife Management Area (WMA) program. DNR’s stewardship of the property will continue Peppers’ customary legacy towards enhancing habitat for all wildlife species while providing public access including compatible educational and recreational opportunities and uses of the land.
Edisto Beach State Park Interpretive Center
With the theme “Choosing to Protect Our Coast,” the Edisto Interpretive Center helps promote the wise use of coastal resources. It is headquarters for Edisto Beach State Park’s interpretive programs and curriculum-based field studies, and for the S.C. Department of Natural Resources’ education and research services.
Old First Baptist Church
1644 Hwy. 174, Edisto Island, (843)869-2432. This church, dedicated in 1818, is historically significant as a church founded by a woman, Hephzibah Jenkins Townsend, and as an integral part of black history. Baptists had worshiped on Edisto since 1686, but there was no church. In 1811, she obtained the original church site and erected the building. In the late 1860s the trustees turned it over to the black members who have operated it continuously to date.
Presbyterian Church on Edisto Island
2164 Hwy. 174, Edisto Island, (843)869-2326. This is the oldest congregation in continuous existence in South Carolina. The current sanctuary was constructed in 1830, replacing the original building erected in 1710. By the early 1800s, Edisto planters began to accumulate unimaginable wealth thanks to the production of Sea Island cotton. Worship was an integral part of their lives, hence when they began to prosper, that prosperity was reflected in a new church of Classic Greek Revival architecture. This structure has survived enemy occupation and hurricanes and is considered one of the most beautiful churches in the Lowcountry. It has a large graveyard with many fine monuments dating from 1785.
Trinity Episcopal Church
1589 Hwy. 174, Edisto Island, (843)869-3568. The first church was built in 1774 on the site of the present building. Nothing is known of the fate of this first building. Second edifice was built in 1880, but was almost completely destroyed by a hurricane in 1893. A former slave rebuilt it, adorning the interior with woodwork.
Edisto Island Serpentarium
1374 Hwy. 174, Edisto Island (843)869-1171, M-S 10am-6pm May 1-Labor Day. More than 500 reptiles on display. Reptile shows hourly. www.edistoserpentarium.com