Experience > Imagine in Charleston

A castle built with creativity. Beautiful ballrooms that look like a movie set. An underground pirate jail. Daydream and cast yourself in a starring role.

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Unplug Encounter Adventure

Take a virtual step back in time and paint pictures in your mind.

Middleton Place

Step back in time and envision life on a bustling plantation with the visit to the stableyards, where pottery, weaving, blacksmithing, candle-dipping and open fire cooking methods are demonstrated.

2 - 6 Take delight at the sight of guinea hogs and water buffalo.

7 - 11 Can you identify which animal was historically used to supply clothing to the plantation's inhabitants?

12 - 16 Read the handwritten letters exhibited in Beyond the Fields, a richly illustrated collection of rare images, archeological artifacts and historical documents.

Children's Museum of the Lowcountry

Play with a purpose at the eight hands-on exhibits designed to integrate cognitive thinking with creative activity.

2 - 6 Unleash your imagination at the Recycled Goods Center, where a paper towel tube can become a telescope, periscope, a dinosaur bone or something altogether different!

7 - 11 Try saying "medieval creativity castle" five times fast, then act out your favorite fairy tale character with a little help from the castle's costume chest.

12 - 16 Operate a hydroelectric dam to power the lights of Charleston. Can you figure out how it works?

Drayton Hall

This detail-rich architectural masterpiece is a National Trust Historic Site and one of the Lowcountry's most pristine examples of an 18th-century southern mansion.

2 - 6 Meander along the river and enjoy the outdoor setting of this majestic home.

7 - 11 Look up! Have you ever seen such detail on a ceiling? These cast-plaster ceilings are very special.

12 - 16 Notice the home does not have a kitchen. Discover why the kitchen was never located inside the home.

Charles Pinckney National Historic Site

Charles Pinckney was a principal author and a signer of the United States Constitution. This remnant of his coastal plantation is preserved to tell the story of a "forgotten founder," his life of public service, the lives of enslaved African Americans on South Carolina Lowcountry plantations and their influences on Charles Pinckney.

2 - 6 Enjoy the fresh air of the interpretive trail, which weaves past archeological excavations.

7 - 11 Did you know President George Washington stopped for breakfast here? It is reported he ate under an oak.

12 - 16 Did you know Charles Pinckney National Historic Site is the only site in the National Park System that was owned by a signer of the United States Constitution?

Heyward Washington House

How did a patriot leader, signer of the Declaration of Independence and artillery officer with the South Carolina militia during the American Revolution live? Find out at this home that was used as a private hotel for President George Washington during his weeklong visit in 1791.

2 - 6 Find the fountain statue in the garden. What is it?

7 - 11 Did you ever think about transportation before cars? Check out the carriage shed to discover an old fashioned garage.

12 - 16 Text, email, Skype—today's society communicates instantly thanks to technology. Check out the writing desk. Look closely and you'll see wax sealed letters that often took months to arrive.

Joseph Manigault House

An impressive example of the splendor enjoyed by rice planting families, this house museum pays architectural homage to the era of plantation wealth.

2 - 6 How many stories does the sweeping, spiraling staircase climb in this home?

7 - 11 Music played a large role in entertaining during the home's era of plantation aristocracy. What musical instrument do you see in this home?

12 - 16 Find the plaque that credits Robert Walker cabinet-maker. What is his work credo (hint: it is the last line on the plaque)

Aiken-Rhett House

The nation's premier example of an urban plantation, this circa 1818 double house was erected by one of the state's wealthiest citizens and encompasses nearly an entire city block.

2 - 6 Can you count the columns on the outside of the home?

7 - 11 Piazza is a term used to describe many houses in Charleston including this one. What does it mean?

12 - 16 The house is an active conservation project, which archivists, historians and preservationists are studying its details. Can you tell which rooms are currently being studied?

Nathaniel Russell House

Among this house museum's many iconic features are an elliptical spiral staircase, oval rooms and dashing use of turquoise wall color.

2 - 6 Flanking the exterior of the house is a joggling board. Find the fun garden decoration and enjoy bouncing from one end to the other.

7 - 11 In 1809, the home's owners held a ball in honor of their daughter's wedding. Close your eyes and imagine ladies and gentlemen dancing across the wooden floors.

12 - 16 Look at the exterior. Notice the odd decorative elements. Those represent earthquake bolts installed after the great earthquake of 1886.

Old Exchange and Provost Dungeon

As the bookend of Broad Street, this historically significant building is on par with Boston's Faneuil Hall, and its subterranean jail confined many pirate prisoners.

2 - 6 How many flags are flying from the front steps?

7 - 11 Several signers of the U.S. Constitution met in the Exchange Building. Can you name them?

12 - 16 Which notorious pirate and crew are imprisoned here prior to their hanging?

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