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All Blog Entries by Bill True

Bill True

Found 124 blog entries published by Bill True.

hilton head home under construction

In its 2018 ranking of Best Places To Retire, Forbes included Bluffton, South Carolina.

To quote their published profile:

Coastal village of 19,000, twenty-five miles northeast of Savannah. Median home price $264,000. Cost of living 9% above national average. PROS: Adequate number of doctors per capita. Good air quality. Low serious crime rate. Very walkable. No state estate/inheritance tax, no state income tax on Social Security earnings, state income tax break on pension income.

According to Jetsetter, Hilton Head Island is one of the five best island vacation spots in the USA.

bridge to hilton head island, scTwo and one-half million vacationers and tourists visit beautiful Hilton Head each year…and most of them wish they lived here full time. Well, each year new

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Hilton Head Island

Over the four-hundred and fifty years since Europeans first set foot on our own paradise island there have been ever more significant changes in the cultural and commercial composition of this 69.15 square mile unique island.

In this post however, we do not discuss those direct changes brought about by the last phase; ‘Tourism & Transplants’, we will spend a few words highlighting a few of the fantastic ancillary benefits enhancing our leisure hours, gained by all, because of the need to make life pleasant for those tourists and transplants. Part two (December) of looking at the enhancements that came as a direct result of the Tourism/Transplant phenomena will examine the improvements to health and welfare.

In this issue we will touch on parks,

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Any article or discussion about Hilton Head Island and tourism must include Sea Pines, which is one of the reasons the iconic photo above of the harbor at Harbor Town in that magnificent resort, has come to be the most popular symbol of Hilton Head Island.

Tourism really moved from a slow progression into high gear when in 1956, Charles E. Fraser turned 5,200 acres of Hilton Head pine forests into the world-renowned Sea Pines Plantation, attracting visitors from all over the globe.

hilton head island aerial mapMr. Fraser was a brilliant entrepreneur, but he had climate and geography working for him. Both of these factors would make possible vacationers’ favorite activities available almost year-round.

The climate is the foundation that affords the tourist the opportunity

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As the economic foundation of the Lowcountry flowed from farming to lumber and as that demand for lumber spread further and further away from the Hilton Head region, the need for dependable transportation of product became uppermost in the plans of the local industry leaders.

This was going to be a challenge!

In most circumstances the creation of a transportation grid and employing the most appropriate methods of transportation is a fairly straight forward engineering project.

However, given the opportunity to look at a map of Beaufort County South Carolina, heart of the Lowcountry, it becomes obvious the extent of the hurdles these early planners had to face.

beaufort county mapBeaufort County is comprised of several parcels of land separated by more than a

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TREES – THE LOWCOUNTRY’S RENEWABLE RESOURCE

south carolina lumber

A businessman and his son, descendants of a family tracing its history in South Carolina to 1735, had probably the single greatest effect on the economics of the Lowcountry. His name was James Lide Coker and the Cokers called Hartsville, South Carolina home, over 180 miles from Hilton Head.

james lide cokerIn 1890, Mr. Coker and his eldest son, James, began a search for a way to turn Southern pine trees into pulp for papermaking, and three years later they had perfected the process. Shipping costs for the pulp made this business unprofitable, however, the Cokers being resourceful folk decided to build a paper mill closer to home.

And thus began the industry that would dominate much of the Bluffton, Hilton Head area

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audubon international logoDecember 27, 2017 was an auspicious day for the town of Hilton Head Island and the very satisfying culmination of three years of intensive effort on the part of many officials, staff members and volunteer residents.

On that day, Audubon International certified the Town of Hilton Head Island as the First Public Audubon Sustainable Community in South Carolina. This award demonstrated the outstanding achievements and dedication to planning for a sustainable future.

What is the Audubon Sustainable Communities Program?

The Sustainable Communities Program (SCP) is an international, science-based, third-party certification program that guides communities through a customized journey to become healthy and vibrant places in which to live, work, and play.

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historical image, lowcountry rice fields, south carolina

Crops Change to Meet the Demand of a Growing Local & US Population

When we think of crops we generally conjure up a field of wheat, barley, corn, asparagus or any other edible plant grown on a farm. However, the Advanced English Dictionary fortunately gives me more latitude in its definition: “A cultivated plant that is grown commercially on a large scale.”

For thousands of years before the arrival of Europeans on the shores of South Carolina, Native American farmers in the region, cultivated corn, beans and squash. However, after the colonization of the area by those immigrating from Spain and Great Britain, the crops became “what made the most money,’ as opposed to ‘what tasted good and was nourishing’.

South Carolina, favored with climatic

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1700 TO 1900: FROM AGRICULTURE THROUGH THE CIVIL WAR AND RECONSTRUCTION BACK TO AGRICULTURE

hilton head island, sc aerial photoFor those of us that have the good fortune to live in the Hilton Head Island – Bluffton region of the South Carolina Lowcountry, our reality is somewhat surreal. Our weather is ideal, with an average year-round temperature of 65.6 degrees, the most inviting beaches on the East Coast, and we are surrounded by waterways and twenty-nine tournament-grade golf courses. Is it any wonder that eight of the ten top employers on Hilton Head Island are tourism industry related?

This is a recent change in the cultural and economic characteristics of the region. So, let us journey back in time to the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries and try to visualize our

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hilton head island beach driftwood

Creatures began arriving on Hilton Head over two and one-half million years ago.

When I set about developing this article on Hilton Head Island’s other than human population of creatures and critters and their introduction to the Lowcountry, I had no idea of the dimension of the objective.

I first learned that the Island itself evolved in two distinct segments. The north end of the island is a sea island dating to the Pleistocene epoch, a period begun 2,580,000 years ago. The south end is a barrier island that appeared as recently as the Holocene epoch, an era that began when the Pleistocene epoch ended, some 11,700 years ago. Broad Creek, which is a land-locked tidal marsh, separates the two halves of the island.

So, when I started

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When I have the opportunity to be on a beach, particularly an ocean beach, I find my thoughts drifting to the history of that piece of land. I cannot help but visualize the various people and cultures that were in the same place that I am, on that surf pounded bit of sand, thousands or hundreds of years ago. This is one of the factors that contribute to my being a true beach lover.

I am a very fortunate beach aficionado in that I reside in the South Carolina Lowcountry, in a town called Bluffton, less than a half-hour drive from the most spectacular island one can imagine, Hilton Head Island.

With twelve miles of magnificent beaches along the coast of the Atlantic Ocean, there is a lot of opportunity to meander throughout millennia and imagine the

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