Splendid Splash

One of the most storied areas in historic #Charleston is White Point Garden at the southern tip of the peninsular city. This former sand bar was filled and converted to a public park in 1834. The pleasant surroundings were interrupted by the Civil War, when the Confederate defenders built the area into huge earthworks with big cannon. But after the war, the park was restored and oak trees planted that now give the area the feel of a grand outdoor cathedral. Summertime swimming in the 1870’s was done in the adjacent Ashley and Cooper rivers, and the bath house pictured was one of two such structures added before 1880. These were built on piles driven into the river bottom, and accessed by ramps from the garden area, offered changing rooms, smoking rooms, open-air verandas and refreshments to beat the Summer heat. It was a popular recreation until 1911, when a big hurricane destroyed the bath houses, and by then there were regular ferries and trolleys taking Charlestonians to the nearby beaches at Sullivan’s Island and the Isle of Palms, so the bath houses were never rebuilt.  <img.src=”Charleston History” alt=”White Point Garden Bath Houses”

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