Day 4 – Preparing to visit Charleston

Leaving for Fort Sumter; the mainland museum is on the left, the aquarium to the right.

Leaving for Fort Sumter; the mainland museum is on the left, the aquarium to the right.

We awoke earlier than we expected, and after hearing the weather, we opted to go to Fort Sumter first. Better to be at sea before rain and a thunderstorm rolled in. Actually, aside from a few spits of rain, the skies were partially overcast, and the weather warm and pleasant.

There are two ways to get there by ferry; one is by way of Patriots Point, where the USS Yorktown is moored as a museum ship. The other is from Charleston, next to the Aquarium. We opted to take the 9:00 boat from the Aquarium, and managed to be first in line after getting the tickets. Yes, Trixie made it out to Fort Sumter before her boy did, the lucky dog.

The landside museum to the fort resembled an old warehouse from the era of tall ships, with a long flight of steps up to what would be the second floor; the ground floor is an open area of brick columns. Given the fact that the city is prone to flooding, you can see why they would want the museum up on stilts to keep it high and dry. We did go in before the tour so Mum could use the facilities – and inadvertently wound up in the administration area, as they had not properly locked the elevator down.

The museum was rather small, with a few key artifacts, such as one of the flags flown from the fort, and a chair from the secessionist meeting that made South Carolina opt to leave the Union. These and a small gift shop we explored after visiting the fort.

While waiting, we saw dolphins in the harbor, just popping up and down, teasing us.

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