299 Wingo Way
Mount Pleasant, SC 29464
Phone: (843) 856-5000
Fax: (843) 856-5050
Arts & Museums
Located in Charleston Harbor, this museum is home to the USS Yorktown, nicknamed The Fighting Lady. This historic battleship played an important role in the Pacific during World War II, sinking the largest battleship ever built. In 1970, Yorktown participated in the recovery of the crew of Apollo 8, shortly before being decommissioned. Moored beside her is USS Laffey, a World War II destroyer, and USS Clamagore, a diesel attack submarine. Many interesting displays and exhibits lie within these vessels and group tours and overnight stays are available for explorers. So come experience a piece of American maritime history!
Although the brick building is named Fort Sumter National Monument, it is actually the Fort Sumter Visitor Education Center at Liberty Square. Located next to the South Carolina Aquarium, it features interactive exhibits and displays that detail the causes of, and beginning of, the Civil War with the Battle of Fort Sumter in Charleston Harbor on April 12, 1861. Park Rangers monitor the museum and will gladly answer questions. There is a bookstore that sells patches, souvenirs, replicas, guidebooks and other memorabilia. Admission to the Education Center is free; however, there is a charge for the ferry boat to Fort Sumter. Tickets can be purchased at the bookstore. There is an elevator behind the front steps for disabled access. Parking is in the tiered city parking building (per hour) or on the street at metered spots. The Education Center is closed on New Years, Thanksgiving and Christmas Days. Visit the website for precise timings.
Artizom is a frame gallery that offers professional help to frame fine art, photographs, prints, posters, textiles, and other collectibles. The frames are chosen with care so that they compliment the artwork you have bought. It has two branches this one is in downtown close to Ansonborough shopping center. In their gallery they have a large selection of quality moldings and their catalog's can be be seen elsewhere.
This is perhaps the most remarkable home on Charleston's downtown waterfront. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the Aiken-Rhett House is a revealing architectural portrait of the antebellum South. Owned at one time by wealthy planter and former South Carolina governor William Aiken, the house is decorated with fine examples of classical art and sculpture. Around the home, the original servants quarters, sheds, kitchens and stables reveal a fuller view of Charleston life in the 1800s. The courtyard adjoining the house is used for a variety of events and programs as well.
City Gallery at the Waterfront Park is a venue for showcasing works by regional, national and international artists. The gallery also gives opportunities to upcoming artists to showcase their creativity on canvas. This is a great platform for art lovers as they can learn from well-known artists whose works of art are displayed here. Operated by the Charleston Office of Cultural Affairs, the gallery hosts many art events and exhibitions like 'Welded Sculptures' and 'Wild Things and Wonder'. There is an elevator for disabled access.
Founded in 1773, The Charleston Museum is America's first public museum. The museum focuses on local history and culture and natural history. Permanent exhibits include artifacts from the 18th and 19th Centuries, including slave tags and firearms from the Civil War. They also feature an impressive silver collection which includes the christening cup of George Washington. For those who like natural history, check out the bird collection and skeletons of local prehistoric animals. The museum also books tours with two nearby historic homes, the Joseph Manigualt House and the Heyward-Washington House.
Open since 2003 in what was once part of Charleston's 19th Century railroad station complex, The Children's Museum of the Lowcountry now serves as a magnet to curious children aged 3 months to 12 years (and the adults who accompany them) to "explore, play, discover, learn and create." With eight interactive exhibits, the museum's aim is to develop a child's thinking, motor and problem solving skills. There is also a special area for infants and toddlers. Children's classes include science, nature, cooking, gardening, history, drama and art. There's even story time, camps and field trips. It's great fun for the whole family.
Smith-Killian is the place to go for realism and color. Everything from landscapes to architecture and still life are expressed through paint, photography and sculpture. The gallery features works by Betty Anglin Smith and her children: Jennifer Lynn Smith, Shannon Smith, Tripp Smith. The work of Darrell Davis and Martin Gates is also displayed.
Located on Cumberland Street and dwarfed by the surrounding modern buildings, The Powder Magazine is Charlestown's oldest surviving public building. Although small, this unique structure, which was erected in 1713, was used by the colonial settlers to store gunpower supplies. A National Historic Landmark, the helpful docents will guide you through its history with the help of artifacts.
The history of the Old Exchange Building is a complicated one. The Declaration of Independence was read from its balcony, and it was used by Washington to greet his people. However, it was also a notorious prison during the Revolution, and a major site in the slave trade. Today you can come see the site for yourself, explore its history, and make your own decisions as to its legacy. What can't be debated is its beautiful architecture, which makes it a true Charleston landmark.
Located besidesGibbes Museum of Art, Wells features works of nearly 20 artists. Each month, through various events, the gallery showcases its wide range of art on display. Featuring landscapes from local Low Country, the various works of art on display are also up for grabs. Such is Well's growing success that it now has three different outlets across the States.
Once the largest slave collection and reselling center in Charleston, the Old Slave Mart Museum now serves to educate the public with detailed accounts of the trans-Atlantic slave trade. Formerly known as Ryan's Mart, the grim auction house was opened by Thomas Ryan on July 1st 1856, and operated for eight years. Detailed documents, tools used in slave trade, and recorded accounts can be seen on display, weaving together the story of the thousands of enslaved Africans who were bought and sold here.