by Craig Debolt
Hey there Earthlings! I was emceeing over at the Camp the Falls this past Sunday and noticed the Medusa Tree. I've lived in the Upstate a third of my life and had never really taken the time to view that tree and how weirdly cool it is. That got me thinking, "What other weird things do I not know about South Carolina?" So, I looked some stuff up and here's what I found.
First, let's get what every upstanding South Carolinian should know out of the way :
- State Capital: Columbia
- State Nickname: The Palmetto State
- Population: 5 Million
- Governor: Henry McMaster
- Largest City: Charleston
- Land Area: 32,000 Square Miles
- Coastline: 187 Miles
- Largest Barrier Island: Hilton Head
- State Animal: White-tail Deer
- State Tree: Palmetto
- State Gemstone: Amethyst
- State Flower: Yellow Jasmine
- State Bird: Carolina Wren
- State Fruit: Peach
- State Reptile: Loggerhead Turtle
- State Motto: “While I Breathe, I Hope”
- State Song: “Carolina”
- State Dance: The Shag
Now, let's get to the weird stuff.
Did you know:
That in 1969 it rained Cremora, a powdered non-dairy creamer, in the town of Chester when the plant developed exhaust vent issues and released the powder into the air.
That South Carolina produces more peaches than anywhere in the country, except California.
That fortune tellers aren’t allowed to just go around telling fortunes willy-nilly in South Carolina. They’re required to obtain a special permit from the state.
That there might be a lizard man in Lee County. In 1988 a teenager reported a large scaly creature had attacked his car. The car was badly scratched and police found 14-inch long, three-toed footprints at the swamp sighting.
That there’s a UFO Welcome Center in Bowman. It was built by a local man, Jody Pendarvis, to welcome aliens whenever they finally decide to land.
That it’s illegal to fish with a yo-yo or dynamite in the fine state of South Carolina.
That it is against the law to buy or sell an electric eel in South Carolina.
That God’s Acre Healing Spring in Blackwell, SC is rumored to have healing waters that can cure the sick and wounded. The previous owner of the land officially deeded the land to God.
That Morgan Island, aka Monkey Island, is an uninhabited island that is home to the only free-ranging colony of rhesus macaque monkeys in the United States. There are around 3,500 monkeys on the island.
That Wadmalaw Island is home to America’s only commercial tea plantation, American Classic Tea.
That the first US Senator that was ever elected by a write-in vote was South Carolina’s Strom Thurmond (R) on Nov 2, 1954 with 139,106 write-in votes.
That South Carolina wasn’t always known as the Palmetto State. It used to be known as the Iodine State, and even said so on the license plates in the 1930’s. In fact, WIS in Columbia stands for Wonderful Iodine State.
That South Carolina owns and operates its own school bus fleet, and is the only state in the nation to do so.That lots of popular movies were filmed in South Carolina, from “The Notebook” and “Full Metal Jacket,” to “Prince of Tides,” “Sleeping with the Enemy,” and of course, “Swamp Thing.”
That about 10-15 magnitude 3 earthquakes happen per year in South Carolina, but nothing has rivaled the The Charleston Earthquake of 1886. It was the largest quake to ever hit the Southeastern United States, at a magnitude of 7.2.
Crazy stuff, right? Who know all this weirdness was in South Carolina? I personally am going to go scout for the Lizard Man. Maybe he'll join Action and me?