A Revolutionary War Museum

OPINION -- 2026.

 

The Year 2026 will be here before we know it and, hopefully, it will be Covid free. The year is significant because now is the time to plan for what will be the 250th Anniversary of The Declaration of Independence, arguably, the most significant document in world history.

The Declaration set in motion events that formed The United States of America - the world’s most powerful nation.

We have faced and continue to face many challenges as a nation; however, 5 years from now will be a chance to set all that aside and teach the world, and each other again, what FREEDOM means. It does not mean the ability to do whatever you want regardless of its impact on others - Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness are for all people, not just those who look like you.

People will come from all over the world to study the United States, and its founding sites and documents. Curricula will be written for schools. The “untold stories” of America’s Freedom will be unearthed; the familiar, like “The Midnight Ride of Paul Revere,” will be recited.

Laurens County is uniquely positioned to take a leading role in South Carolina’s reflection on what it means to be a free nation, and we certainly endorse the Laurens County Council’s action in making that happen.

State Representative Stewart Jones, of Laurens, referenced it March 6 at a commemoration at the Hayes Station massacre site. County Council followed up with a March 9 Resolution calling for establishment of the South Carolina Revolutionary War Museum in the County of Laurens.

The Resolution says, in part:

“The County of Laurens will provide technical assistance when needed and possible, related to the planning, development, and implementation of the aforementioned museum project. ...

“The Laurens County Council hereby encourages staff and other interested parties to take action as necessary to bring about the development of the aforementioned South Carolina Revolutionary War Museum in the County of Laurens, and hereby directs staff to cooperate with all relevant Federal, State, and local agencies to implement the goals stated in this resolution.”

Laurens County has the space to devote to a Revolutionary War Museum. The first floor of the Historic Courthouse in downtown Laurens can be easily adapted. The Laurens County Museum’s two locations are within walking distance of this building. The former Echo Theater with continuing renovations could host a Human Rights seminar. Presbyterian College’s history department is a fine resource. Clinton has its former museum building available for use. Outdoor locations can include Hayes Station, Fort Lindley and Musgrove Mill. We have a beautiful spot at Horseshoe Falls to reflect on what a wild country our forefathers and foremothers undertook to tame and make their home. We are within driving distance of Upstate attractions and The Cherokee Nation. We are a 2-hour drive to the permanent educational facilities of Charles Towne Landing.

And, we have land, if the State wants to build another Charles Towne-type facility or model after the State of Virginia’s Museum established in 1978.

We, at The Chronicle, certainly believe we have a heritage worth protecting.

We should always remember, and take great pride in the fact that, as the Resolution says:

“The role played by the State of South Carolina and its people was critical to winning the Revolutionary War, and the Upstate region of South Carolina, and Laurens County lie in the geographic center of an area where a disproportionately high number of engagements occurred between American and British forces.”

 

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