Feature Articles

August Issue 2002

Pickens County Museum in Pickens, SC, Features Two Exhibions for Summer

The Pickens County Cultural Commission in Pickens, SC, invites one and all to the opening of two very special exhibitions at the Pickens County Museum of Art & History on Aug. 10, PLAYING: A Look Back at Toys, Dolls & Games and The Mills of Pickens County. Both exhibits will continue through Sept. 28, 2002.

Opening in Gallery One, PLAYING: A Look Back at Toys, Dolls & Games will focus on playing and a kind of history of playing. Memories of happy times at play with a favorite toy, game or doll are shared by all of us. Whether homemade, child-made or manufactured, each has it's own magic for the imagination and play. Webster's New World Dictionary defines Play as, "To amuse oneself; to imitate the activities of..."

We learn through play. We learn mental and manipulative skills by playing with natural or man-made material in the environment. Pleasure sticks like golf clubs and hockey sticks and billiard balls were once the weapons of long ago. One of the world's ancient toys is the BALL, probably created from an ideal natural shape. Another ancient toy is the DOLL. It was not a toy until long after it was used for religious or magical purposes, although children have probably always made people figures from sticks and stones.

PLAYING: A Look Back at Toys, Dolls & Games, co-curated by Lois Bro, Jim & Linda Campbell and the Pickens County Museum staff, will feature special displays of antique toys; a selection of dolls representing all modes of development, play and collecting; a brief history of schoolyard games and board games; mountain toys and toys from textile mills representing "Play on the Mill Hill".

A very special "Doll Appraisal Day" will be held at the museum on Sept. 11 (In Remembrance) from 10am-2pm. The public is invited to bring in that special old doll for a complimentary description and appraisal from a certified appraiser and specialist in doll restoration.

This entertaining, educational and "playful" exhibition is made possible by the collaborative efforts of Lois B. Bro, Jim & Linda Campbell, Walt Dillon, The Greenville Doll and Toy Collectors Club, Donald Roper, Marge Silkwood, "The Stuffits" and the Pickens County Museum of Art & History.

Opening in Gallery Two, The Mills of Pickens County is a historical journey through Pickens County through the eyes of gristmill enthusiasts. This exhibition boasts at least sixty-five documented gristmill sites demonstrating the importance of mills in the everyday life in Pickens County during its earlier days.

It is only natural that Pickens County has the remnants of so many mills, as the vast number of rivers and streams in the Upcountry, rapidly running down the mountainsides and into the Piedmont provided early settlers with food, work and community. Today there are three restored mills that bring to light much of our local history - the historic Hagood Mill, the Golden Creek Mill, and Yoder's at Meece Mill. While most of our mill sites are in ruin, or are nothing more than a memory, this special exhibition, thanks to the research and perseverance of those that recognize the worth, helps to preserve and secure these historic sites and their place in our history.

The Mills of Pickens County is, to a great extent, an offshoot of the materials created by Carol Coke and her "Upcountry Writer's Class" through a Pickens Middle School Service Learning Project. We are most appreciative to Coke & her students and particularly to Anne Sheriff and Leroy Stewart for their work on this project. This exhibition is possible thanks to the efforts of the Pickens County GIS & Mapping Department, Pickens County Courthouse Records, Pickens County Library Microfilm Collection and Photographs, the Faith Clayton Family Research Center at Southern Wesleyan University and the Central Heritage Museum. Of course, no history of Pickens County Gristmills could be possible with the knowledge and enthusiasm of Alan Warner, the Pickens County Museum's and historic Hagood Mill's miller extraordinaire.

For further information check our SC Institutional Gallery listings, call the Museum at 864/898-5963 or e-mail at (picmus@co.pickens.sc.us).

[ | Aug02 | Feature Articles | Home | ]

Mailing Address: Carolina Arts, P.O. Drawer 427, Bonneau, SC 29431
Telephone, Answering Machine and FAX: 843/825-3408
E-Mail: carolinart@aol.com
Subscriptions are available for $18 a year.

Carolina Arts is published monthly by Shoestring Publishing Company, a subsidiary of PSMG, Inc.
Copyright© 2002 by PSMG, Inc., which published Charleston Arts from July 1987 - Dec. 1994 and South Carolina Arts from Jan. 1995 - Dec. 1996. It also publishes Carolina Arts Online, Copyright© 2002 by PSMG, Inc. All rights reserved by PSMG, Inc. or by the authors of articles. Reproduction or use without written permission is strictly prohibited. Carolina Arts is available throughout North & South Carolina.