Charleston, SC, Fort Sumter National Monument, Harold’s Country Club

11/23/13 Saturday at Yemassee, SC (The Oaks at Point South-TT/MA)

The CRV, branded by a leaf!

IMG_4272 car

Leaving at 8:30 am, we arrived at the Charleston Visitor Center by 10 am. (Parking garages throughout the city at $2/hour, the short term at the Visitor Center only gives first ½ hour free, but if you stay over that it’s the same as the long term). The Visitor Center and Museum Row are on Meeting Street. There is a free trolley that can get you around town; at the Visitor Center they’ll give you a map of Charleston with those stops/routes. Because it was Saturday, the Farmer’s Market was happening nearby at Marion Square, so we walked through that. Fun (even break dancing off in one corner) and a good place for our lunch since we needed to be at Fort Sumter by 11:30 am for our noon departure (no food allowed on island). I had a Muffaletta (spicy meats and cheese with olive spread-yum!) and John an omelet which he ate as we walked to the Fort Sumter (where the Civil War began) departure spot. (Our Ferry cost: $16/senior).

IMG_4273 signs IMG_4274 Market 1 IMG_4276 sign IMG_4275 Mufaletto IMG_4286 Visitor

Fort Sumter, “Where The Civil War Began”, is man made island, with rock added to a natural sand bar. That part took years. Then more years to built the 90 foot high 3 tiered brick fortress. Started in 1829, it was only 90% finished when, on Dec 26, 1860, Major Anderson (Union), found out that the South Carolina Legislature had declared the state seceded from the Union (Dec 20, 1860).  In concern for his position, ferried his men under cover of night from Fort Moultrie to the safer Fort Sumter. At first he flew the Union garrison flag (see replica below-original in case below replica), which was torn up by a storm on April 11, 1861, then replaced it with the smaller storm flag (also below) which flew during the 2 days of bombardment. Apparently before leaving Fort Moultrie his men drove spikes into the cannon vents (touch holes) and set the wooden gun carriages on fire. When the South Carolinians discovered this, they were incensed. On March 4, 1861, Lincoln became President. On March 3, 1861, Brigadier General PGT Beauregard of Louisiana took command and April 12th, SC troops moved into Fort Moultrie. He demanded that Fort Sumter be vacated. The North refused. Finally, on April 12, 1861, Confederate troops from Fort Johnson fired on the fort. For 34 hours they bombarded Fort Sumter from all around. On April 13th they sent a “hot shot” (cannon ball heated to red hot) to hit the officer’s quarters, which set it on fire, creating the danger of lighting the powder magazines below. Thus Major Anderson, with only a total of 85 men, had to divert some to getting this fire out. Plus, it took at least 5 men to man each cannon. After that kind of pummeling, they surrendered and from then on Confederate troops held Fort Sumter, despite repeated attempts by the Union to get them out. The Palmetto Guard militia took control until the troops arrived and flew this Palmetto flag first over the fort, for the confederates.

IMG_4284 Fort Sumter 1 IMG_4365 fort 8 IMG_4285 Fort Sumter map 2

Palmetto Secession Badges, to celebrate Dec 20, 1860

Palmetto Secession Badges, to celebrate Dec 20, 1860

IMG_4292 flag 1 IMG_4373 flag 5 IMG_4371 flag 4

Our trip to Fort Sumter, the Fort (including a shell in the wall) and coming back.

IMG_4306 boat IMG_4311 Bridge across Cooper River IMG_4324 fort sumter 2 IMG_4332 fort sumter 3 IMG_4337 fort 4

This black section above was added to the Fort after the Civil War.IMG_4341 fort 5 IMG_4356 fort 6 IMG_4357 fort 7IMG_4358 flagsFlags of the Fort flown during the Civil War.

Once back on the mainland, we walked to the City Market. This is a long row of buildings, separated by roads you cross as you pass from one long building to another, all filled with vendors. We took the trolley back to the Visitor Center and our car. That sure was nice!

IMG_4391 city 2 IMG_4392 puppets IMG_4393 market 2 IMG_4394 baskets 2 IMG_4395 roses

On our way to home, we needed to stop for gas. We saw a sign for Costco, but it was too late to make the turn. At the next turn we tried to find a back way to Costco, but no luck, so back to Hwy 17. Dang, we missed the turn again, so we tried to find a way at the next turn. Nope. So back to Hwy 17 and this time, with eyes glued, we made it into the turn for Costco! It was worth it too. Gas was $2.98/gal.

A couple road signs along our way:

Stop For Stopped School Bus

Keep Moving Change Lanes Later

We made it home by 5:30 pm, as it started to get dark, then left in the dark (first time we can remember leaving our RV when it was dark) for Harold’s Country Club. Several people had made recommendations-that it was a unique place. They were right. We had to make reservations for Saturday night, steak night. At $18/plate we opted for 1 dinner that we’d share. Glad we did, it was a large steak. Simple fare (steak, baked potato, salad, tea) and very good food all eaten in Harold’s Garage. You can read about him on the Internet. Some photos:

1 Harold's sign 2 3 4 5The Lady in red was cashier as we came up in the line for our plates.

At Harold’s we met a lovely fun couple, Vivian and Jim, who also live in Sun City, Bluffton, SC (as do Debbie and Dave who we met at Hunting Island St. Park). They are senior citizens who met on line. She did it on a lark. They’ve been married for almost 2 years. She and some friends at Sun City also applied for jobs at the new Cracker Barrel. She was the only one who got a job there and is still working! She drives a red golf cart over the bridge to get to work.

When we got home we treated ourselves to Chocolate Tree dark chocolate. Mmm mmm good.

About Patricia Elser

I've always loved the loose, flowing, transparent look of watercolors, of Chinese paintings and their calligraphy, but alas, no watercolor classes were available when I was in school, so that interest remained buried until my children were grown. Even then, I was afraid that I couldn't really paint, so upon my sister's advice, I actually started to take classes. I signed up for every class available, determined to learn no matter how afraid I was. I came upon a teacher, Stan Miller, who inspired me, who opened the door to success in watercolor. I love to look at beautiful images. I want to capture them forever. All my life, photography was how I gathered images of the beauty I saw. Thanks to all that photography, I enjoy composing pictures, especially up close. Watercolors allow me to add more of me in their translation of that beauty. My paintings reflect my love for music and dance, with their rhythm and flow. I am fascinated by the play of light, so it appears in my pictures as drama for they are filled with darks and lights. Maybe it's the challenge, maybe it's the beauty, but now, when a work comes together, it fills my soul.
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