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Colonial Dorchester State Historic Site
300 State Park Road
Summerville, SC 29485
843.
873.7475

We invite you and your students to visit our park and participate in an educational program at Colonial Dorchester State Historic Site. Colonial Dorchester preserves and interprets the archaeological site of a village founded in 1697. For nearly one hundred years Dorchester prospered as an inland trade center. Several generations of South Carolinians, free and slave, lived and worked in the homes and shops that lined Dorchester’s streets. Evidence of the affluence of the village can still be seen today. A fort built during the French and Indian War stands guard over the Ashley River and is the best-preserved example of Tabby fort construction in the nation. The brick bell tower of St. George’s Anglican Church looms over the graveyard in what was once the center of the village. Beneath the surface lie remains of the village in an archaeological record that spans much of South Carolina’s early history. Today archaeologists are examining that rich record and historians are delving into documents that put color into the picture of life in colonial South Carolina. Colonial Dorchester is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

We encourage you to experience the park by participating in one of the following Discover Carolina programs. Pre-site, on-site and post-site lesson plans have been developed to ensure a quality educational experience for you and your students.

Plan Your Discovery ... Click Here for Registration Procedures

Park Interpreter Led Programs:
A Sense of Place
 
  • Program Activities
     
  • In the setting of the 1700s colonial village of Dorchester, students will experience a sense of time and place. They will learn how the town was settled by a group of Congregationalists from Boston, Massachusetts. Students will hear how trade developed and see the remains of the tabby fort built to protect the town from the French and then the English. Students will see how archaeologists are working to uncover the story of colonial Dorchester.

    Grade Level: 3
    Length of Time: 4.25 hours
    Social Studies Standards: 3-2, 3-2.6
    Science Standards: 3-1.1
    Language Arts – Writing Standards: 3-5.3
    Setting: State Historic Site

    A Town at the Edge of the Atlantic World: Colonial Dorchester
     
  • Program Activities
     
  • Students will analyze archaeological and historical records of selected lots at Colonial Dorchester State Historic Site. Students will complete a series of lot-specific guided activities that are based on the pre-site activities. These activities will deepen student understanding of colonial South Carolina history and South Carolina’s place in the Atlantic World.

    Grade Level: 7 and 8
    Length of Time: 1 to 1.5 hours
    Social Studies Standards: 7-1.1, 7-1.3, 7-1.6, 8-1.3, 8-1.4 and 8-1.6
    Setting: State Historic Site

    A Town at the Edge of the Atlantic World: Dorchester in Carolina
     
  • Program Activities
     
  • Students will analyze archaeological and historical records of selected lots at Colonial Dorchester State Historic Site. Students will complete a series of lot-specific guided activities that are based on the pre-site activities. These activities will deepen student understanding of colonial South Carolina history and South Carolina’s place in the Atlantic World.

    Grade Level: 9-11
    Length of Time: 1 to 1.5 hours
    Social Studies Standards: GS 3, 3.1 and 3.2; USHC-1
    Setting: State Historic Site

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