After visiting Laura plantation and enjoying it so much, this place was such a let down. Maybe Laura was just so great and we had our expectations high, but this place was really bad in comparison.
The tour started with a blacksmith demonstration on how they make nails. It wasn't really why we went there but sure we sat down and watched the demonstration. One issue with this was there was no safety precautions taken as the blacksmith hammered on the anvil, I turned away when he was hitting the hot iron, because I could just see a piece of hot metal flying into my eye. A small piece actually did hit my wife's arm. While it wasn't a major injury by any means, it could have been prevented in my mind. So his demo ended but the guy kept going on and on. I thing he knew a lot about blacksmith in that era, but he had a monotone voice that just made it boring.
So poor start, but let's get into the plantation. Well, it didn't get any better. The tour guide wasn't very good. He didn't seam passionate about what he was doing and was just terrible. We started in a poorly lit room, because there was some historic documents, which I understand light could damage them. However, he just did a terrible job at explaining what those documents were and I have no idea why it was important. The tour didn't get any better. We watched a video, which at Laura everything was explained. We went through, he explained some things, but I didn't get many crucial pieces of the workings of the plantation. Questions were asked, and I think the tour guide made things up, and when pushed, made up different stories until he finally admitted he didn't know. One wasn't a hard question. Someone just wanted to know were the artifacts original and how were they saved when a company used the property as offices and through when it was vandalized before restoration. With a better tour guide, I may have given a better rating.
As far as the grounds, it wasn't guided and explore on your own. The other plantation we went to, Laura, had a guided tour of the grounds as well. Since we were the second to last tour, we were told we can look, but as soon as that tour ended, the grounds were closed and pushed out the gates. I felt the grounds should have remained open past the tour at least a half hour to explore.
Also, the gift shop was closed when we were leaving, which I think they are losing money by not keeping it open until the end. I really don't think this place cares.
So one tip is if you really want to see this place, don't go on the 3:30 or 4:00 tour. You will only get to see part of the plantation. Also, hope there is a better tour guide then the one we had and I would recommend going to Laura and trying your luck at other places before you go here.
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