The Coastal Observer offers a nicely detailed story with background on both the land and post-rice culture owners of a number of Waccamaw Neck plantations. The story focuses on the Arcadia Plantation which will be toured as part of a series of tours focusing on rice plantations as places for field sports especially waterfowl hunting. Future tours will be in the other sub-regions of rice culture in South Carolina, the Pee Dee, Santee and ACE Basin.
Altama Plantation, a historic and well documented rice plantation of some 4,000 acres is now owned by the state of Georgia. See a lengthy and illustrated story in the Atlanta Journal Constitution for more.
The purchase is largely for environmental conservation but the plantation has considerable historic meaning too. James Bagwell wrote Rice Gold: James Hamilton Couper and Plantation Life on the Georgia Coast about the antebellum owner of the plantation.
Adam Parker had a great piece reviewing the changes and improvement to the depth and breadth of slavery interpretation at Rice Kingdom historic sites.
The Wall Street Journal published a piece on the market and for homes near Civil War battlefields or antebellum houses. The featured antebellum house is Chicora Wood plantation. The Allston family used Chicora Wood as it’s premier rice plantation among a collection of Waccamaw-Pee Dee area lands they owned. R.F.W. Alston, owner of Chicora Wood and hundreds of slaves, served as a governor of South Carolina. His daughter Elizabeth A. W. Pringle inherited the plantation and later wrote two books about Postbellum rice planting there.
What is rice plantation worth these days? It’s not so easy a question to answer given all the variables in play. How many acres? Is there an existing house or other structures? What types of easements might exist? Is it convenient to airports, highways, etc.?
Middleburg Plantation in Berkeley County, SC just sold and it gives a pretty good hint at current pricing. The acreage is not large – 326 – yet the property fetched $3,500,000. It is fairly convenient to Charleston (airports, Interstate, city upsides), but it is a pretty rare plantation in that its original house from 1697.
For the record the new owner made his money by founding the Moe’s Southwest Grill chain and the Planet Smoothie chain.
Jonathan Green received a nice treatment in the Charleston City Paper in which they highlighted his many current projects tied to educating people about the Rice Kingdom. In addition to being the founder and leader of the Lowcountry Rice Culture Project, he is renowned for his art work, public speaking appearances, illustrating a kid’s book on Robert Smalls and designing sets for a revival of Porgy and Bess.
General Anthony Wayne is best-known as a successful Revolutionary War officer from Pennsylvania. His successes in that war earned him the gift of two rice plantations from the Georgia legislature. Richmond and Kew plantation had been confiscated from Loyalists and they required investment and slaves. Wayne attempted it but in the early 1790s deeded the lands and slaves back to his creditors.
Joe McGill, the intrepid and inspired person behind the Slave Dwelling Project has been traveling from state-to-state for years now in order to stay in slave houses that remain standing. His next over-night will be at Hofwyl-Broadfield rice plantation near Brunswick, Georgia. The plantation was a major one in the southern-most corner of that state and the southern-most corner of the Rice Kingdom.
A nice article appeared this week on archeological work being conducted by the Chicora Foundation at Kendal Plantation. They believe it is the first permanent English site in the Cape Fear area.
The author Ed Ball wrote an essay in the New York Times to commemorate and muse over the memory of the Sesquicentennial of emancipation on his family’s rice plantation, Limerick.