Day Trips | Kingstree, Williamsburg County offer history, undisturbed scenery
Looking for an opportunity to escape the hustle and bustle over the winter holidays? What about exploring a historic town and a beautiful river?
The scenic Black River is a perfect example of a coastal plains stream, and it runs through the historic town of Kingstree. Black River’s headwaters are in nearby Lee County; it meanders down to the Great Pee Dee River at Winyah Bay near Georgetown.
The banks of Black River are largely undisturbed due to extensive forestland conservation efforts by landowners and The Nature Conservancy, Ducks Unlimited, Pee Dee Land Trust and other regional land conservation organizations. Parts of Black River are considered by locals and visitors alike to be the prettiest of all rivers in the area.
In Kingstree, you can visit Gilland Park, on Gilland Avenue and on the Black River. Take your children and pets, pack a picnic and enjoy an afternoon. If you have more time, arrange a guided tour or simply take your boat and explore this gem of a river. The current is not too strong, and the mosquitoes and other pesky insects won’t be too active this time of year. Winter in this part of South Carolina is really a great time to see the natural world.
Take a little more time to explore the historic town of Kingstree. Kingstree and Williamsburg County are at the southern tip of the Pee Dee region. You’ll notice that the shape of the large oak trees looks more like the Lowcountry’s landscape — somehow they seem stouter and wider than the oak trees farther up in the Pee Dee region.
Like Conway and so many other South Carolina towns, Kingstree’s 1823 courthouse, at 201 W. Main St., was designed by the famous architect Robert Mills. Kingstree also has a Carnegie Library; it now serves as the county museum — the Williamsburgh Historical Museum at 135 Hampton Ave. — and houses artifacts that date back to the very beginning of the county’s existence.
The museum also owns the 1749 house, Thorntree, which once served as an encampment for British dragoons, members of any of several cavalry regiments in the British army. In fact, quite a bit of Revolutionary War activity occurred around Kingstree and Williamsburg County.