EFFECTIVE MAY 3, 2022: The Museum follows CDC guidelines with respect to mask wearing. Charleston County's Covid-19 community level is currently listed as low. Masks are not required while visiting Museum sites.
The Charleston Museum's Slave Badge Collection contains numerous
examples of copper badges worn by enslaved people in Charleston.
Enslavers were required to obtain a badge annually from the city's
treasury office for any enslaved person working outside their domain.
The resulting income from these ancillary services were sometimes kept
by the enslaver completely, divided equally, or, in some recorded instances,
kept by the enslaved laborer entirely. Also included is a copper "Free"
(or "Freedman's") badge, c. 1783. A city ordinance in place from 1783
to 1789 required all free persons of color above the age of fifteen to wear
these badges in plain view.
In the Museum’s Armory, see excellent examples of historic weaponry, dating from 1750 to the twentieth century, with uses that ranged from military to more personal applications such as hunting and dueling.
In the Lowcountry History Hall, see materials relating to the Native Americans who first inhabited the Lowcountry and the African American and European settlers who transformed the region into an agricultural empire.
In the Natural History gallery you will see an extraordinary array of birds, reptiles and mammals that have called the South Carolina Lowcountry home since prehistory, including contributions from noted naturalists.