Pioneers in the Back Country
TOURISTS motoring to Florida or to such South Carolina resorts as Myrtle Beach, Charleston, or Hilton Head roar along superhighways at sixty or more miles an hour, crossing creeks, rivers, and swamps that once were impassable barriers to communication and trade between the sparse settlers of the Up Country and the civilized Low Country. To this day, most tourists think of South Carolina in terms of the azaleas and camellias of the Charleston region in the spring and the beautiful old houses of that city, or of the white sands of the Carolina beaches in summer, or the semitropical golf courses of Hilton Head and other playgrounds in winter. A few may know about the horse-loving society of Aiken and Camden or the shooting preserves on abandoned rice plantations along the Waccamaw, Pee Dee, Edisto, and other rivers. But not many travelers who race across the state over double-lane highways take time to read historical markers or to ponder the folders that hospitality centers on the main arteries hand out to visitors. Speed, even in an age of energy shortage, prevents much contemplation of local history.
Although superhighways from the Canadian border to the tip of Florida reduce the bordering landscape to a common denominator of sameness, even the fleeting traveler may discern striking differences as he moves from region to region of South Carolina. If so, he may pause to wonder what impact the chang