Plantation Resort and Palmettos – A Love Affair with a Little History Thrown In
Ah yes–blue skies and a warm breeze gently rustling the fronds of the palm trees. Few things evoke so strongly the sweet feelings of vacation like a palm tree. It thrives in the salty air of this seaside town of Myrtle Beach so when you visit, you are for sure to see plenty.
Also known as Cabbage or Sabal Palm, palmettos are native to not only S.C. but to the southeast down to the Florida Keys, Cuba and even the Bahamas (source: Wikipedia.) They are disease and hurricane resistant, which makes them not only an attractive plant but a reliable addition to our Plantation Resort landscaping. Interestingly, it’s also a close cousin to grass. Did you know that this tree is the state tree of South Carolina and is found on the state flag?
When staying at Plantation Resort, you can’t help but notice our beloved palms. We’ve planted close to 2,000 and counting at our Resort with a dozen more planted just last week! We love our palmettos at Plantation Resort – just take a look at our logo!
These durable, hardy plants are stronger than you might expect and they have an honored history here in South Carolina. We’re proud of our palms and here’s one of the reasons why:
The Battle at Fort Moultrie Brings Palmetto Pride to South Carolina
Ever wonder why South Carolina is called the “Palmetto State”? Sure, there are a lot of palmettos, but Palmetto Pride stems all the way back to the revolutionary war when these trees surprised everyone by protecting the patriots from an onslaught by the British Navy. In those days, the British naval forces were the strongest in the world and many of the troops stationed on Sullivan’s Island in Charleston Harbor were concerned about their defensive wall that was made out of sand and palmetto logs. The wall was 16 feet wide, 10 feet tall and only half finished when the British arrived. Only the patriot leader, Colonel Moultrie, seemed to have confidence in the outcome of the upcoming battle. When asked if he could withstand the British forces, he replied: “Yes, I think I can.” Even General Lee, whom George Washington had sent to help with the defense of the South, was incredulous, sometimes referring to the fort as a “slaughter pen” for he was sure that cannonballs would make quick work of the fortification.
When the battle began, everyone was surprised to find that the fort did not blow apart once the British opened fire. Instead, the soft trees absorbed the cannonballs, keeping them from exploding. Without the explosions and splintered debris, the soldiers were able to focus on the battle. Bolstered by the unexpected success of the fort, the patriots fought on with bravery. The only people killed were those who were hit directly when the cannonballs flew around the walls. At one point the flag fell and a soldier, Sergeant William Jasper, stepped in front of the raging bullets to retrieve the symbol of their fight.
At the end of the day, 12 patriots lost their lives versus 220 British, with one British ship destroyed. The gunpowder on the ship, Actaeon, caught flame and sent a billowing column of fire into the sky. Moultrie is rumored to have said that it looked like a palmetto—a fitting end to a day saved by these amazing trees.
Extra Fun Facts
- Fort Moultrie used to be named Fort Sullivan until the Revolutionary War Battle led by Colonel Moultrie. After the battle, everyone was so impressed with his command that they named the fort after him.
- Edgar Allen Poe was once stationed at Fort Moultrie. It was here that he wrote The Gold Bug.
- Fort Moultrie is one of the only National Park areas that can trace its history through 171 years of American coastal defense. Forts were established here for the Revolutionary War, Civil War, and World War II.
- Tour Fort Moultrie (google maps) on a short day drive to Charleston while staying at Plantation Resort.
Come See Our Beautiful Palmettos On Your Next Vacation
Palms = Vacation! Come enjoy them personally on your next vacation. Reserve your stay at Plantation Resort by calling 1-800-845-5039. These elegant trees line the streets leading up to “your home away from home.” Hopefully, now you will have a better sense of Plantation Resort’s Palmetto Pride.