About Us

about us

In 1986, a small group of Edisto Island residents gathered to found the Edisto Island Historic Preservation Society (EIHPS). The mission of the Society is to preserve and exhibit the history of Edisto, and to educate the public in these endeavors. To fulfill this mission, the Society operates the Edisto Island Museum and works in […]

Membership

membership

Join us in supporting the Museum with a membership. Benefits for all memberships include: Free Entry to Museum Discounts on Museum shop purchases & annual tour tickets No sales tax on shop purchases Subscriptions to our newsletter, “Edisto Echoes” Members’ meetings Invitations to educations events, lectures and receptions   Please select one membership level: Museum […]

Special Events & Exhibits

special events

  Edisto Island Art Guild Exhibit – June 9 – August 30. This annual exhibit features works in a variety of mediums, including paintings, sculpture and wood carvings. Many of the pieces of art are for sale. Mary Segars Art Exhibit – Tuesday, September 9th through Tuesday, December 30th. Mary Segars is this year’s Edisto […]

Explore our History

Edisto Island is treasured for its natural beauty, its beaches and creeks, its wildlife and its laid-back, easy way of life. But, it is also treasured for its rich history that includes Native Americans, Spanish pirates, English settlers, wealthy cotton planters, enslaved African-Americans and many who made their living off of the bounty of the ocean and creeks. To truly experience all that makes Edisto so special, be sure to include a visit to the Edisto Island Museum to learn more about our fascinating history.

The Museum is filled with artifacts and furnishings of many of the island’s most magnificent plantations as well as a wonderful collection of vintage photographs that reflect the glory days of Edisto Island when cotton was king. You’ll also find a Civil War Room that is filled with artifacts from this war as well as one of the first printings of the South Carolina Ordinance of Secession.

Equally inviting is the Agriculture Room that has an impressive display of farm implements from the early days of Edisto. You’ll learn about the importance of cotton to the island’s economy and way of life and how that lifestyle was drastically altered after the Civil War. Our exhibits continue on through the period of the early 20th Century, featuring displays from Edisto’s oldest Freedman’s house, the art of creating shrimp nets, artifacts from the island’s school for African-Americans and a wonderful collection of vintage children’s toys.

Not to be missed is the Nature Room which enchants children and adults alike. You’ll see a wealth of fossils and shells that were found on Edisto’s beaches, including the jaw of a mastodon, and learn about the animals that are native to our island.

For a more detailed look at the history of Edisto’s plantations, click here for a map of the Plantations of Edisto Island.

We also have special exhibits that change every few months, so be sure to visit more than once. There’s always something new to learn here at the Edisto Island Museum.

People of Edisto

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    The Spanish

    A Spanish Catholic mission was established to convert the Edisto Indians in 1569, but was abandoned in defeat in 1570.

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    English Settlers of Edisto

    Paul Grimball was the first English settler, arriving on Edisto in 1683. The tabby ruins of the Grimball House are still in existence.

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    Africans

    The first Africans came to Edisto Island in about 1684 and were a key element in establishing the island’s planter class, many of whom amassed huge fortunes. Once freed, many former slaves remained on the island and continued to Edisto’s rich cultural heritage.

Visit the Gift Shop

Before you leave, spend some time in our gift shop. We have a special section of books, games and toys for children as well as adults. We also feature a wide selection of one-of-a-kind, hand-made crafts from local artisans, including jewelry, pottery, wood carvings and paintings. And, because we're a non-profit organization, there's no sales tax so you save money while supporting a worthy cause. We hope to see you soon!

Contact Us

Address: 8123 Chisolm Plantation Road
Edisto Island, SC 29438

Phone: 843.869.1954
Fax: 843.869.2754
email: shop@edistomuseum.org