Yesterday, someone asked me about my Fourth of July. Although I enjoyed playing some drums with friends in the evening sun at the Charleston Harbor Resort (just down the road from the massively-packed Patriots Point/Yorktown event), I had to admit the highlight of the holiday was in overhearing some pure Lowcountryspeak up in the quaint shrimping village of McClellanville (where my father and his wife live) earlier in the day.
Every year, many of the old, blue-blood families (the Morrisons, Leland, Baldwins, Rutledges, Grahams, etc.) and some of the relative new villagers get together for a big picnic. They set up card tables and folding chairs under the oaks by the decorated bandstand, just off of the Robert E. Ashley boat landing, across the yard from the town’s Village Museum at the end of Pinckney Street. Local shrimpers provide piles of fresh shrimp, which are served boiled from big boxes at the end of long picnic tables by the cupful. The townspeople bring covered dishes and the museum provides sweet tea and lemonade. Museum curator and local writer Selden Baker “Bud” Hill usually makes a nice speech at noon. It’s a Norman Rockwell scene for sure.