UNION — Visitors from Germany and Japan were among the 149 people who signed the guest register at the Union County Museum in July.
Museum Director Ola Jean Kelly announced that the 149 guests who signed the register during their visit to the museum in July included residents of Abbeville, Charleston, Columbia, Cross Hill, Draytonville, Gaffney, Greenville, Lexington, Lyman, Prosperity, Rock Hill, Spartanburg, and West Columbia.
Kelly said the number also included residents of Alabama, Arkansas, California, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Michigan, North Carolina, Texas, Utah and West Virginia.
She said there were also three international visitors, including two from Germany and one from Japan.
Tours And Meetings
In addition to individual visitors, the museum is also a popular destination for tour groups, among them the youth from the USC Union summer camp who Kelly said toured the museum on June 30.
The museum has a meeting room in its basement which is used as a regular meeting place by a number of local groups as well as the site of special events.
Kelly said that in July the Union County Clemson Club continued its practice of holding its monthly meetings in the museum meeting room. In addition, she said the Good Family Reunion was held there and among those attending were several visitors from out-of-state.
In addition to being asked to sign the museum’s guest register, visitors are also encouraged to write comments about their visit to the museum.
Among those leaving comments were two genealogical researchers from Utah who wrote “Wonderful, very wonderful.”
Kelly said this was high praise indeed since Utah is where the most extensive and comprehensive genealogical records are kept.
Many visitors to the museum not only visit to tour the exhibits but also to consult its genealogy archives.
Also leaving comments were a Spartanburg family who wrote “Wonderful displays and stories” and a visitor from Indiana who wrote “Great info. Thanks.”
Visitors are also asked to answer the question “How did you learn about us?” to let Kelly and the rest of the staff know where they read and/or heard about the museum.
Kelly said the answers the museum received in July included at the “Chamber of Commerce,” “the Courthouse,” and “the motel where we were staying.”
Cross Keys Plantation
The museum and the Cross Keys Plantation are both owned by the Union County Historical Society and Kelly includes information about the latter in her report as well.
Kelly said that “attendance continues to be very good. We’ve hosted an engagement party as well as numerous professional photographers. There is a wedding scheduled on the grounds for later this month. The primitive kitchen is completely furnished thanks to two individuals who donated their collections.”
The museum also has a gift shop and, according to Kelly “between Facebook, Pay pal and visitors in the museum, our gift shop is doing quite well. You will find many books, etc. that are not available elsewhere. Some are for research while others are fiction, but about the area and the people who were among the original settlers in the area. For those with ‘tweens and younger teens’ I would recommend books by Sheila Ingle and Dr. Tony Zeiss.
Kelly also announced that a local collector of “Face Jugs” has provided part of his extensive collection for a short-term loan to the museum. She said the Face Jugs are displayed in the front window of the museum as well as in two glass cases in the main lobby.
Internet And Facebook
Kelly said the museum’s presence on the Internet and Facebook continues to grow with more visitors and “likes.” She said that as of July the museum now has 1,872 “likes.” Of those, 67 percent were female and 33 percent male and ranged in age from 18 to 65 and older. Of those 1,832 were “spoke the President’s English,” while 39 “spoke the Queen’s English” and one spoke Dutch.
“Quite impressive,” she said.
Charles Warner can be reached at 864-762-4090 or [email protected]