After South Carolina seceded from North Carolina in 1729, the colony expanded inland. The settlers from Scotland, Wales and Ireland established small farms inland, while the wealthy upper class settled on the coast. Charleston, the first capital, shows that they had a lot of money: It is considered one of the most magnificent cities in the South, some even say it is one of the most beautiful in the whole USA. The vernacular claims that the residents of the state have retained a certain stubbornness and thus independence. There are several historical examples of this: In 1860, South Carolina was the first state to declare independence from the Union. And shortly thereafter, the first shot of the American Civil War was fired near Fort Sumter. Today plantations remember Museums and monuments to the colorful past. The lifestyle of the old south is still alive here: the accent is more pronounced than elsewhere and the traditions are upheld. In addition to the tourist magnet Charleston, visitors especially love the long sandy beaches and the fairytale mansions of the plantations.
According to allpubliclibraries, South Carolina’s nickname “Palmetto State” refers to the native palmetto palm (Sabal palmetto), which can reach up to 20m in height. The state’s national plant has a high salt tolerance and grows mainly on coastal dunes, on riverbanks, in swamps and in marshes. The first fortifications at Fort Moultrie (near Charleston) were built from the trunks of this palm tree, which proved its worth against artillery fire, above all because of its resilience. Since 1861, the palm tree has therefore been included in the state flag.
South Carolina is home to great musicians like James Brown (1933-2006), Eartha Kitt (1927-2008) and jazz trumpeter Dizzy Gillespie (1917-1993). Incidentally, no state has produced more astronauts than South Carolina.
Location & Size
Located on the southern Atlantic coast, South Carolina borders North Carolina to the north and Georgia to the west and south. The approximately 300 km long Atlantic coast has some wonderful sandy beaches and some offshore islands. On the flat coast, however, there are also extensive swamp landscapes. Further inland is the Sandhills region, which has large sand dunes that bear witness to the fact that the coastline once ran elsewhere. The state is even more hilly further inland. There is about the Sassafras Mountain, which is the highest elevation at 1,085 m. With an area of 83,000 square kilometers, South Carolina is almost the same size as Austria, but only ranks 40th among the US states.
According to calculations by the US Bureau of Census, around 5.148 million people lived in South Carolina in July 2019 – 63.8% white, 27.3% African American, 5.7% Hispanic, 1.7% Asian and around 0.5% Native Americans. The largest settlement area with around 1.7 million inhabitants is Greenville-Spartanburg-Anderson (also called Upstate South Carolina), the Columbia Metropolitan Area with almost 950,000 inhabitants (Central South Carolina) and the Charleston Area with around 750,000 inhabitants. With 136,000 inhabitants, Charleston is also the largest city in the country. With 60.6 people per square kilometer, the state ranks 19th in the US for population density. Since the cost of living here is significantly lower, South Carolina is one of the states with a high immigration rate.
The largest international airport is Charleston International Airport (CHS). International connections are only available seasonally. However, the major US carriers fly to New York from here – JFK, Dallas, Chicago-O’Hare, Atlanta, Boston, Detroit and Philadelphia. Most tourists come through the Atlanta hub – for example via the I-20, which leads from Atlanta to Columbia. There are a total of 11 interstates that run across the state. There are also countless state highways.
Amtrak also has a dense route network in South Carolina and connects the cities with each other.
South Carolina has a humid subtropical climate. In the coastal regions there is no real winter. Temperatures are usually around 13 to 15 degrees during the day, but can drop significantly at night. Spring is mild and long. In the summer months – from June to August – it is hot and humid. The water of the Atlantic warms up to 28 degrees and there is bathing weather until mid-September. The months of July to September are also the wettest. The pleasant temperatures continue into November. The coastal region is in the hurricane zone. Occasional hurricanes also occur here.
Northern South Carolina has temperatures about four degrees below those of the coastal region.
|Average temperatures in Charleston, South Carolina in °C|