On Oct. 29, 1988, the South Carolina State Museum opened its doors, bringing to the citizens of the Palmetto State the newest, and one of the finest, state museums in America. Since that day it has awed, delighted and enlightened millions of visitors. The Museum has four large floors devoted to the disciplines of art, history, natural history and science/technology.
The State Museum has more than 70,000 artifacts in its collection, and it is still a very young institution. The State Museum is housed in its largest artifact, the former Columbia Mill. This former textile mill also is a world-first. When it opened in 1894, manufacturing cotton duck cloth (a canvas-like material), it was the first totally-electric textile mill in the world. It was also the first major industrial installation for the General Electric corporation. It is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
The State Museum was voted one of the three top museums by Southeastern readers of Southern Living magazine, along with the High Museum in Atlanta and the Smithsonian Institution. Come and enjoy art, cultural history, natural history, science and technology. Many of the museums displays are interconnected. You will find there is history in our art, artistic beauty in our natural history and science, and history behind our technology.