We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

The South Carolina Maritime Museum

Map updates are paused. Zoom in to see updated info.
Reset zoom
Updating Map...
Your filters are still active.
There are no pins in your viewport. Try moving the map or changing your filters.
Sponsored by:
Get directions
Address: 729 Front Street, Georgetown, SC 29440
Phone Number: 843 520 0111
Improve this listing
11:00 am - 5:00 pm
Closed now
See all hours
Mon - Sat 11:00 am - 5:00 pm

The South Carolina Maritime Museum (SCMM) opened its doors in December...

The South Carolina Maritime Museum (SCMM) opened its doors in December 2011. The Museum has been a sixteen year-old vision of the Harbor Historical Association (HHA) a grassroots, volunteer group that began in 1996 with a mission to preserve and promote the maritime history of Georgetown County and South Carolina. Through community support of the annual Georgetown Wooden Boat Show and related events, HHA was able to accumulate initial funding for the museum. It is the only museum in the state with the sole mission of interpreting South Carolina Maritime history.The SCMM is located on the first floor of an old McCrory five and dime store building, on the waterfront in the middle of Georgetown's historic business district. The front third of the Museum's 5,000 square foot space has been finished and fitted for an exhibit area and small gift shop. The original maple floors and brick walls have been exposed and a moveable wall can be slid back as more exhibits are added. The SCMM’s first temporary exhibit tells the story of the lumber schooners that sailed in and out of Georgetown between 1890 and 1920 when Georgetown was the biggest lumber port in the Southeast. Sailing ships and steamships transported millions of feet of pine and cypress lumber from South Carolina forests to cities in the northeastern United States. The stories of these ships and their crews are an important part of the maritime history of South Carolina.The "Lumber Schooners" exhibit is a series of 26 enlarged photographs, charts, and maps that have been reproduced, courtesy of the Maine Maritime Museum and the Georgetown County Digital Library. Much of the exhibit is devoted to the CITY OF GEORGETOWN, a four-masted sailing schooner chartered by the Atlantic Coast Lumber Company, whose mill in Georgetown was one of the largest lumber operations in America at the time. The construction of the vessel was financed by a group of forty nine investors, nine of whom were Georgetown people. The exhibit will be on display through the summer of 2012.There are endless stories connecting the sea to agriculture, commerce, military, recreation, education, and how ships and their crews and builders played a role. It is the mission of the South Carolina Maritime Museum to tell these stories through: Interactive Exhibits, Rare Artifacts from the Marine Industry, Model Ships and Artwork, Educated Volunteers and Staff, Special Programs for Young and Old.

read more

TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 39 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 10
  • 16
    Very good
  • 12
  • 1
  • 0
Lots of local history

Stopped in during our walk in downtown Georgetown. A great resource for the shipping history of the area. Not a lot of artifacts, but there are some great photos and model... read more

4 of 5 starsReviewed 1 week ago
Christine F
Add Photo Write a Review

39 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

Rate and write a review
Roll over, then click to rate
  Click to rate
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Level Contributor
17 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed 1 week ago

Stopped in during our walk in downtown Georgetown. A great resource for the shipping history of the area. Not a lot of artifacts, but there are some great photos and model ships. Pat was very informative about the area and was able to answer all questions. Takes less than one hour to see everything. No admission fee is charged, but... More 

Thank Christine F
Wilmington, North Carolina
Level Contributor
109 reviews
34 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 59 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed 5 weeks ago

I enjoyed this place, but I wouldn't call this place a museum. There are very few artifacts on display, but there are many model steam boats and photos that describes the history of the waterways around the area. Don't walk by without stopping in because you will learn something.

Thank RoverToad
Level Contributor
10 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 18, 2015

Very nicely displayed nautical displays focused on local history and artifacts. Well wort a visit. It's small so you won't spent too much time, but don't pass by.

1 Thank Barbara M
Minneapolis, Minnesota
Level Contributor
356 reviews
174 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 80 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 30, 2015

It was a lovely find to stumble upon but it does not take long to go through the exhibits so do not dedicate more than an hour of your time.

Thank Rachel C
Georgetown, South Carolina
Level Contributor
29 reviews
11 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 12, 2015

Georgetown has a long and interesting maritime history. As the third oldest city in South Carolina as well as a port city you can imagine the amount of history that can be showcased in a waterfront museum. This one certainly does not disappoint.

Thank Eric H
Culpeper, Virginia
Level Contributor
72 reviews
21 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 10, 2015

Perfect, small museum. Even if the subject does not totally align with your interests give this museum a go. It beats the tired dioramas at the nearby Rice Museum by far. Exhibits are professional quality, with gorgeous ship models, photographs and artifacts. I found the story of a sunken Union civil war battleship whose protuding smokestack can still be sighted... More 

Thank plant-nut
Quakertown, Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
106 reviews
25 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 3, 2015

This little museum features much of the history of the boats that helped to fashion the area. It is displayed by actual pieces, by photos and by models of boats. It's a small place and doesn't take long to tour but it should be seen when visiting Georgetown. I found the old photos of the town interesting to compare the... More 

1 Thank Babz J
Georgetown, South Carolina
Level Contributor
16 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 31, 2015

It's a small museum, but growing. Very interesting history of Georgetown and maritime SC. The addition of the Lens from the North Island Lighthouse is wonderful. It's not big, but as one of five museums in town, if you spend a day you can get around to all. The little gift shop is very fun.

Thank Lauren J
Charlotte, North Carolina
Level Contributor
34 reviews
20 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 7, 2015

This is an interesting record of the maritime history of the Georgetown area. Not enough to hold the attention of most youngsters, but worth a few minutes if they are interested in models or ships.

Thank him8nce1
Rochester, New York
Level Contributor
50 reviews
16 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 24, 2015

This is a great place to better understand this historic inland port dating back to the Colonial Period. In an hour one can see historic photos of the indigo and cotton trade, ship models, and exhibits. One of its prized possessions is the Fifth Order Fresnel lens from the North Island Light House. It is effectively displayed. The museum store... More 

Thank Larry F

Travelers who viewed The South Carolina Maritime Museum also viewed

Georgetown, Coastal South Carolina
Georgetown, Coastal South Carolina
Georgetown, Coastal South Carolina
Georgetown, Coastal South Carolina

Been to The South Carolina Maritime Museum? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing

Questions & Answers

Questions? Get answers from The South Carolina Maritime Museum staff and past visitors.
Posting guidelines
Typical questions asked:
  • Do I have to buy a ticket for my infant?
  • How do I get there using public transportation?
  • Is there a restaurant or café onsite?