The great and beautiful city of Charleston was founded in 1670, boasting over 300 years of fascinating history. Though now famed for its bustling and colorful streets as tourists come from near and far to visit, it wasn’t always full of horse drawn carriages and buggy rides. Here is a look at some of the most important moments in Charleston’s history, from the very beginning to the present.
- 1670: In the Spring of this glorious year, 150 English colonists, indentured servants, and slaves sailed into the Charleston harbor. The proprietors of Albemarle Point flattered their king, Charles II, by naming the settlement Charles Town in his honor.
- 1740: Thanks to the many wharves along East Bay Street, Charles Town had become a busy seaport. Ships carrying all manner of goods (from deer skins to indigo to rice and cotton) traded back and forth, also bringing the luxuries of Europe — which lent a cosmopolitan air to the growing community. By 1740, it was considered one of the most critical ports in North America for exporting, and the colony benefitted greatly from the economic success.
- 1776: The Revolutionary War ended Charleston’s Golden Age. That year, a British fleet failed to take Colonel William Moultrie’s palmetto fort on Sullivan’s Island, but two years later they attacked by land. As the surrounding countryside was torched, the British took control. By 1783, Charles Town had become Charleston.
- 1860: Charleston lay divided concerning state’s rights; the Ordinance of Secession was signed in December 1860, making South Carolina a separate entity from the United States. The first shots of the war were fired upon Fort Sumter on April 21, 1861 and would continue to ravage the state until it ended in 1865.
- 1900s: Charleston once again was established as a cultural center. Preservation effort went into effect in the 1940s, allowing this beautiful city to retain her natural charm, distinction, and tradition.
These days, you can stop by such historic sites as Sullivan’s Island, or walk along the beaches and focus on the feeling of the sand between your toes rather than its history. With horse drawn carriage tours that can show you these historic areas (or bypass them for the food and nightlife hotspots), you’ll be sure to have a wonderful experience no matter what your interests are. So come on down, find the perfect horse drawn carriage tour for you and your family, and experience all this history for yourself.