The SOUTH CAROLINA Portal
Hilton Head Island or Hilton Head is a town (located on an island of the same name) in Beaufort County, South Carolina. It is 20 miles (32 km) north of Savannah, Georgia, and 95 miles (153 km) south of Charleston, South Carolina. The 12 miles (19 km) of Atlantic Ocean beachfront are among the most popular vacation destinations on the east coast. An estimated 2.25 million visitors pumped more than $1.5 billion into the local economy in 2004, . A year-round population was 33,862 can swell to over 275,000 during the peak of summer vacation season.
The island has a rich history that started with seasonal occupation by native Americans thousands of years ago, and continued with European exploration and the Sea Island Cotton trade. It became an important base of operations for the Union blockade of the Southern ports during the Civil War. Once the island fell to Union troops, hundreds of ex-slaves flocked to Hilton Head, which is still home to many 'native islanders', many of whom are descendants of freed slaves known as the Gullah (or Geechee) who have managed to hold on to much of their ethnic and cultural identity.
The Town of Hilton Head Island incorporated as a municipality in 1983 and is well known for its "eco-friendly" development. The Town's Natural Resources Division enforces the Land Management Ordinance which minimizes the impact of development and governs the style of buildings and how they are situated amongst existing trees. As a result, Hilton Head Island enjoys an unusual amount of tree cover relative to the amount of development.
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- Nickname: The Palmetto State
- Capital: Columbia
- State Officers
Did You Know?
- ... that South Carolina has the highest rate of stroke deaths in the nation.
- ... that South Carolina is the only state in the nation that owns and operates its own school bus fleet.
- ... that the first opera performed in the Americas was performed in Charleston on February 18, 1735.
- ... that the first public museum in the Americas was the Charleston Museum, founded in 1773.
- ... that Monique Coleman who played Taylor McKessie in High School Musical 2 was born in Orangeburg.
- ... that Darius Rucker of Hootie and the Blowfish is from Charleston.
- ...that Charleston, South Carolina was the first city in America to have a chamber of commerce in 1773
- ...that Charleston, South Carolina was the first city in America to have a historic preservation society in 1931.
- ...that the first shot of the Civil War was fired in Charleston, South Carolina in 1861
- ...that Charleston, South Carolina was the first city in America to have a public library 1743, a museum 1773, prescription drug store 1780, woman newspaper editor and publisher (Mrs. Elizabeth Timothy) 1739, theater (Dock Street Theatre) 1736, and fire insurance company 1736.
- … that Melanie Thornton of the hit music group " La bouche " who was big during the 80's and 90's was born and raised in Mt. Pleasant,South Carolina and performed all over Charleston before heading to Europe to find stardom . later on in the early to mid 2000's she tragically passed away in an airplane accident.Her resting place is also in Mt.Pleasant.
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Francis Marion (February 26, 1732–February 27, 1795) was a lieutenant colonel in the Continental Army and later brigadier general in the South Carolina Militia during the American Revolutionary War. He became known as the "Swamp Fox" for his ability to use decoys and ambushes to disrupt enemy communications, capture supplies, and free prisoners. His use of guerrilla tactics helped set in motion the decline of open battles in the conflict, but early records indicate that he was a sailor before the Revolutionary War.
Marion is considered one of the fathers of modern guerrilla warfare, and is credited in the lineage of the United States Army Rangers.
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