The Post and Courier of Charleston recently ran a story about a circa 1790 rice bed that sold at auction for $45,000.
Rice Beds are poster beds mainly from the colonial era. They were built locally in the Rice Kingdom and are distinguished by having a sheave of rice carved into the posts. Most were made of mahogany wood.
North Carolina public radio’s eastern arm produced a fine synopsis of the rice culture in the state recently. You can listen or read the content complete with illustrations.
Wilmington and Brunswick County, NC are planning to start a North Carolina Rice Festival to point up the long history of rice culture on the Cape Fear River. The article also gives an update on efforts at Orton Plantation to join the ranks of old rice fields once again producing Carolina Gold and other heirloom rice strands.
Although it escaped my attention last fall, the Weekly Surge, the free weekly out of Myrtle Beach, ran a none of the best pieces in recent years on the “rice-growing renaissance” taking place in that South Carolina.
Tim Carman of The Washington Post wrote a piece on Heinz Thomet, a Maryland truck crop farmer who is experimenting with rice. Thomet has tried several varieties including Carolina Gold and is also using the SRI method of rice production.
Goodwill Plantation in Richland County once grew rice using the inland impoundment methods. Now, a gold mining company wants to buy the plantation and give it the state of South Carolina as a public nature preserve in consideration of Federal approval of the mines environmental impact. Read more about in The State.
Lowcountry native Jonathan Green has achieved loyal following during his still thriving career as a painter. Recently he has launched a new venture – The Lowcountry Rice Project – with the cooperation of a number of scholars, agriculturalists, and other friends. Two upcoming events help to draw attention to his efforts: a new exhibit of his work at the Avery Institute at the College of Charleston and a conference this September. The AP recently covered these developments as seen in the Miami Herald.
Recently Garden & Gun ran a profile of Professor David Shields and Glen Roberts. The piece has now been made available online. If you do not know of them, they have both been closely associated with efforts to resuscitate the growing and eating of Carolina Gold Rice. Shields is a scholar at the University of South Carolina. Roberts runs Anson Mills in Columbia which specializes in milling and packaging heirloom grains. Together they work to bring back into wider cultivation a host of heirloom foods. Read more at G&G.
The Salem Gazette (MA) ran a substantial story on the Gullah – Geechee Corridor and its ties to rice culture recently. The piece gives a nice primer on the recent history of the Corridor.
The Coastal Observer (Pawley’s Island, SC) recently published a profile of a Wachesaw Plantation resident who has taken a keen interest in rice kingdom history. The story offers some nice bites of history of Wachesaw and Richmond Hill plantations on Waccamaw Neck.