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“A good museum worth visiting”
Review of Charleston Museum

Charleston Museum
Ranked #23 of 240 things to do in Charleston
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Owner description: The Charleston Museum, America's First Museum, founded in 1773. Its mission is to preserve and interpret the cultural and natural history of Charleston and the South Carolina Lowcountry. We invite you to explore this rich, varied history at the Museum and its two National Historic Landmark houses. All are located downtown, in America's Most Historic City. Featuring: Lowcountry History, Historic Armory, Charleston in the Revolutionary War, "City Under Seige" (civil war), Natural History Hall, Kidstory, and Historic Textiles Gallery
Windermere, Florida
Level 6 Contributor
722 reviews
302 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 648 helpful votes
“A good museum worth visiting”
Reviewed July 14, 2013

We decided to go to the Charleston Museum after visiting the Heward-Washington House and got a combined ticket. You can use the combined ticket over several days which made it convenient. The museum itself has the honor of being the first in the United States, albeit in a different building than where it is now. Most of the exhibits are on the second floor. One thing to keep in mind is that there is no restaurant or café so make sure to plan accordingly.

The museum has several different collections from the early ages until today. At some point the museum decided to only collect artifacts related to South Carolina, but still maintain and display those artifacts in its collection from its inception. The layout can be a little strange as it skips generations in the same room, one going from the Revolutionary War to WWII and back to the Revolutionary War. They even have a section dedicated to a naturalist who chronicled numerous birds and animals. There is a large selection of stuffed animals from around the United States and elsewhere.

They also do a good job of highlighting Charleston's history with the production of rice and the issue of slavery. They do not glance over slavery but show how it factored into history and the problems it caused.

If you are looking for something to do and are interested in history, the Charleston Museum is definitely worth considering.

Visited July 2013
1 Thank wbullseye
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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706 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Amanda, Ohio
Level 6 Contributor
315 reviews
149 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 247 helpful votes
“on my to do list”
Reviewed July 11, 2013

We came here last November. My 6 year old enjoyed seeing all of the antique artifacts. The rest of our party had a difficult time trying to see it all. So big and lots to learn about. I would plan at least 2-3 hours next time, we felt rushed since we were on a deadline for a reservation elsewhere.

Visited November 2012
Thank stacicooperhoffmann
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 3 Contributor
12 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“America's 1st Museum”
Reviewed July 8, 2013

Wide range of artifacts, from Charleston's history to mummy from egypt. Includes wildlife around Charleston also.

Visited June 2013
Thank SeattleLites6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Charlotte, North Carolina
Level 5 Contributor
42 reviews
30 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 60 helpful votes
“Worth a Visit or Two”
Reviewed June 22, 2013

History, friendly assistance and plenty of space-that's what makes the Museum worth a visit. Its very easy to get around and see everything as it's wide open so it's not like some museums which are full of tiny rooms that you have to squeeze around.

It's designed for you to travel through history and get a full scope. There are a good number of original artifacts accompanied by nicely detailed but not too wordy history lesson.

Along with the expected War history, there are good stories about the surrounding Low Country nature and agricultural. I was fascinated by the Rice production videos. They have tools and pottery exhibits as well. We actually went to the Rice fields out at Caw Caw as a result of what we saw at this Museum and you could easily see the history (and the wild rice) that is there.

I'm a fan of museums in general and have been to many. This one is somewhere in my Top 10.

Visited October 2012
Thank Tiffany75
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tampa, Florida
Level 6 Contributor
372 reviews
190 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 133 helpful votes
“Like the original Smithsonian”
Reviewed June 13, 2013

This was much better than we ever expected...really contained a little bit of everything - art, sculpture, natural history, costumes. It goes back to the city's emphasis on a well-rounded education. We were impressed.

Visited March 2013
1 Thank MissLaughsALot
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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