Hopsewee Plantation | Georgetown, SC
Take a Cellar-to-Attic Plantation Tour
Hopsewee, a South Carolina National Historic Landmark, is a preservation rather than a restoration. It’s never been allowed to fall into decay and has always been cherished by the five families who have owned it since it was built about 1740.
The house, still a private residence, is a typical Lowcountry rice plantation dwelling of the early 18th Century, with four rooms opening into a wide center hall on each floor, a full brick cellar and attic rooms. The house has a lovely staircase, with hand carved molding in each room and random width heart pine floors, which are almost one and one half inches thick. Constructed on a brick foundation which is covered by scored tabby, the house is built of black cypress, which probably accounts for the fact that it is basically the same house Thomas Lynch and his wife, Elizabeth Allston (from what is now Brookgreen Gardens), had constructed 40 years before the Revolutionary War.
WOW Factor: Thomas Lynch, Jr., was born on the plantation. His father was instrumental in work done to create the Declaration of Independence, but was unable to sign due to illness. His son, age 26, did sign, helping to make Hopsewee famous for generations. The home is furnished in 18th and 19th Century family heirlooms from the Beattie family, the home’s present owners and residents. The one-hour guided tour takes you through every room, as the guide shares history of the owners as well as the slaves who lived and worked here and the rice that was grown here.
Hint: After your tour, enjoy a Southern tea, or perhaps lunch in the River Oak Cottage Tea Room. (The scones are delicious and the tea they serve is extraordinary.) Home cooks will enjoy taking home their cookbook, “Afternoon Tea Recipes and Other Favorites.” At $10, it’s quite a bargain. Open: 10am-3pm Tuesday – Saturday or by appointment. Advance tickets suggested. Prices range from $7.50-$20. Plan to spend time in nearby Georgetown, with its historic charm, delightful downtown, and waterfront boardwalk.
Share this article: