I'm currently living in a summertime place and because we are at the height of the summertime season, I'm going to tell you a little about it.
Edisto (EH • dis • toe) is an uncommercialized barrier island in South Carolina about an hour south of Charleston and 2 hours north of Hilton Head Island. Way off the beaten track, the main drag is a National Scenic Byway that starts just before the McKinley Washington Jr. Bridge spanning the Dawhoo River.
The Island takes its name from the Edistow People, a Native American tribe who lived here before the colonial settlements. The Edistows and their related fellows on the coast left mysterious shell mounds and circles. Indigo and, most notably, Long Staple Cotton were grown here on profoundly profitable plantations in the 18th and 19th centuries. Long Staple Cotton would command 3 times and more the price of standard cotton. Needless to say, the War of Northern Aggression and finally, the Boll Weevil changed all that.
After the 1920s, folks started coming down again for the summer from Charleston and would take a boat or drive across the Dawhoo at low tide. While the island homes are mostly out of sight, all but a few of the beach lots are developed with modest homes on stilts. Commerce consists of one grocery store, two gas stations, a hardware store and a handful of shops and restaurants. Even at peak season (now), it's very low key.
Edisto Beach is situated at the mouth of the Edisto River that, along with the Ashepoo and Combahee make up the ACE Basin, a nationally significant coastal wetland wilderness that the Nature Conservancy has called one of the "last great places."
It's an hour's drive to "civilization," but the longer I live out here, the less I'm interested in plunging into noise, traffic and polluted air. Here, it's incredibly beautiful, super quiet, I don't lock my doors and can walk out under the stars at night with no concern.
Ten months ago, I'd never heard of this place and I won't be here forever but what a great treat and privilege to live and work here for now.
How did I get here you want to know? That's another story for another day. Maybe.
Meanwhile, below are a handful of photos I've snapped since last December.
at the edge of the State Park
Beached Pilot Whale
Pelicans and rainbow
near the Marina
Beach at my corner 1
Beach at my corner 2
Moonrise and shrimp boat
Click here to learn more about the ACE Basin.
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