Charles Towne Landing State Historic Site in the West Ashley area of Charleston, South Carolina preserves the original site of the first permanent English settlement in Carolina. Originally opened in 1970 to commemorate South Carolina's tricentennial, this 664-acre (269 ha) site is home to an exhibit hall, rental facility, a natural habitat zoo, ongoing archeological excavations, miles of trails, dozens of picnic tables, a replica tall ship, six fireable replica cannon, and much more.
Site of Old Charles Towne
|Location||1500 Old Towne Road|
|Nearest city||Charleston, South Carolina|
|Area||184 acres (74 ha)|
|NRHP reference No.||69000162|
|Added to NRHP||December 17, 1969|
Experimental Crop GardenEdit
The Experimental Crop Garden showcases crops planted by early colonists for food and profit. While offerings vary seasonally, sugarcane and indigo, two attempted cash crops, are frequently visible.
Adventure is a replica of a ketch, a popular style of 17th-century cargo vessel. Similar ships carried commercial goods, foodstuffs, and even livestock between New York, Barbados, and everywhere in between. Renowned 20th century naval architect and historian William Avery Baker designed Adventure in 1969. The first Adventure served Charles Towne Landing from 1970 until 2004. The second Adventure was constructed in 2008 by Rockport Marine in Maine and sailed to Charles Towne Landing in October, 2008.
The Fortified Area of the site is bounded by a reconstructed palisade wall. Colonists constructed the original palisade wall to defend the young colony from a land-side attack from the Spanish, or their native allies. The Fortified Area also contains reconstructed earthwork fortifications and six replica cannon. The colonists mounted a battery of cannon facing the Ashley River, and a second battery defended Towne Creek (present day Old Towne Creek). Both the palisade wall and earthwork fortifications are both partially reconstructed on their archeological footprint.
The Animal Forest, a natural habitat zoo, is home to species indigenous to Carolina in the 1670s. Some of these animals, such as puma and bison, are no longer native to the South Carolina Low Country. Animals at the zoo include:
- Great blue heron (Ardea herodias)
- Brown pelican (Pelecanus occidentalis)
- Great egret (Casmerodius albus)
- Black-crowned night heron (Nycticorax nycticorax)
- White ibis (Eudocimus albus)
- Wild turkey (Maleagris gallopavo)
- Turkey vulture (Cathartes aura)
- Black vulture (Coragyps atratus)
- Yellow-crowned night heron (Nyctanassa violacea)
- Red wolf (Canis rufus)
- Striped skunk (Mephitis mephitis)
- Black bear (Ursus americanus)
- White-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus)
- Bison (Bison bison)
- Bobcat (Felis rufus)
- Pumas/cougars/mountain lions (Felis concolor)
- North American river otter (Lutra canadensis)
Archaeological finds include Native American, English, and African artifacts. Professional archeology at the site began in 1967, and continues through the present day.
- "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. July 9, 2010.
- Lister, Mrs. Toney J. (June 16, 1969). "Site of Old Charles Towne" (pdf). National Register of Historic Places - Nomination and Inventory. Retrieved 23 June 2012.
- "Site of Old Charles Towne, Charleston County (Albemarle Point, Charleston vicinity)". National Register Properties in South Carolina. South Carolina Department of Archives and History. Retrieved 23 June 2012.
- "The Animals". Archived from the original on 2015-01-13. Retrieved 19 June 2014.
- Mueller, Laura (July 19, 2013). "Red Wolves Introduced to Charles Towne Landing Animal Forest". Retrieved 23 June 2012.
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