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Charles Pearson

Florence City/County Pics

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My first trip to Florence since 1992...to catch Greyhound to Charleston ($72 R/T) was brief; from what I could see, the city has grown much...It's a long 5 hour ride that no longer goes through Lake City, Kingstree, but instead goes west to Sumter, then Columbia, and then back east down I-26 through Orangeburg...and finally Summerville to North Charleston...where I had to cab it ($25) into the City of Charleston's historic French district.

Carolina Hospital

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The main street in Florence via Pamplico...

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Florence skyline

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Destination Greyhound

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Travelers

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Charleston Bound...

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Typical Florence house near Greyhound

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Johnsonville/Kingsburg in Lower Florence county, where I was born and grew up:

A Peanut field below my mother's backyard...

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Giant dramatic pines and soybeans ready for harvest...

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The woods and pond in the back of the old house where I played, imagined and grew up on FoxBay Road; then called Route 166...(I stayed here for hours)

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Edited by Zahc

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Cool shots. Thanks for sharing. Florence has a lot of powerlines...

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Cool shots. Thanks for sharing. Florence has a lot of powerlines...

Indeed...Florence has lots of them. Reminds me somewhat of the cluttered adverts and econo-motels along Lombard Street off Van Ness when heading towards Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco...(Reporting "Live" from the Apple Store, 301 King Street Charleston...where I am waiting to meet with someone to look at my MacBook...)

Florence City/County Pics of the Day:

"Exploring a Kingsburg Swamp", Egg Hill Road, eastern Florence county, Johnsonville..

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Edited by Zahc

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In search of place to eat in downtown Florence on South Irby Street after 12:30 a.m.

The hotel...the most inexpensive ever! clean & comes with your own little living room & wireless connect, which I can't live w/o...

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The Library at Night (very beautiful building!)

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Wendy's say open til 1...but it's not

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Unusual for me...drive-in window banking

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Red dots store...aaaahhhh, I remember those.

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First Baptist Church, So. Irby & Palmetto

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Old Main Public Library, another impressive building...

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Scores of places to eat...but not after 1 AM for restless/adventuresome souls...

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A Tuesday night "Must-Do"...

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A comic book store, one of my favorite things...

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The main hospital lights up the night...

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...found a place to eat after 1 am, CVS Pharmacy...until the morning buffet anyway!

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Edited by Zahc

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Thanks for posting the pics.

The old library is slowing decaying. The County needs to find a use for the building.

My suggestion would be for the city to vacate the overcrowded City-County Complex and turn the old Library into a City Hall. A single story addition ot that building in the '70's could be demolished and a larger two story addition added in it's place to include the current parking lot. An adjacent motel is being torn down now. It could be used to replace the parking. If the city still needs more space, they could buy and renovate the old Post Office, as an annex.

The vacated space in the Complex could be used for the much needed courtroom space for the county.

Edited by vicupstate

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Thanks for posting the pics.

The old library is slowing decaying. The County needs to find a use for the building.

My suggestion would be for the city to vacate the overcrowded City-County Complex and turn the old Library into a City Hall. A single story addition ot that building in the '70's could be demolished and a larger two story addition added in it's place to include the current parking lot. An adjacent motel is being torn down now. It could be used to replace the parking. If the city still needs more space, they could buy and renovate the old Post Office, as an annex.

The vacated space in the Complex could be used for the much needed courtroom space for the county.

I toured downtown yesterday...Downtown is no longer the bustling, fun place with the Kress store, Sears, Belk & a host of others I fondly remember as a boy & my grandparents used to take me shopping with them, and I would buy cashews or chocolate covered peanuts and treasure the taste underneath a tree shade.

I was very uncomfortable in downtown Florence, though the buildings were beautiful, it was like a ghosttown and the people I came across strange (to me) and paranoid. I got more hostility here in a single hour than I've ever gotten in all of twenty-five years in San Francisco's Tenderloin or 16th Street...I don't think the people I ran into in downtown liked or trusted me very much. I was nearly kicked out of one dirty store on Dargan Street because my camera went off...accidently, I lied to whomever, because he and someone else panicked at the very sight of me. I was there to buy batteries since my camera batteries had just died...and it was the only store I saw in the block (that looked like a store) but inside the place, which was packed with sadly poor & disadvantaged looking people, the whole store smelled of rotten meat & I couldn't believe people were buying food with that sickening aroma. I don't think I'd be touring downtown Florence for another 100 years...It's a shame Florentines have let their jewel of downtown sink so low...

Yep, the old library is a gem. Florence needs to find use for it...Saw that "Bates looking motel" you mentioned and photographed it at every possible angle...It's so bizarre. It would love to go inside of it...and see what kind of "stuff" happens there just once!...One of my auntie's took me shopping last night at Magnolia Mall & I didn't realize until she told me that old Wilson High had moved to a new sprawling campus in the country...so she drove me by to see it. It's as big as Charleston Southern University...

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Edited by Zahc

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Zahc,

I can't believe you didn't know about the Venus--the only late night/early morning restaurant you need to know about in Florence! It's right on Palmetto near downtown, and is WONDERful for late, late, LATE night food! It's been around forever, and is a classic. Please tell me you found it eventually? FYI, their address is 471 W. Palmetto Street.

Your pics of Florence's sad commercial districts just reinforces what I've been saying for so long about Flo Town: it needs help. It is the saddest of our "larger" towns by far--there's nowhere that even comes close. Don't know what's wrong with the powers-that-be there, but have been told it's the "good ole boys" ruling the town and not wanting change. That seems suspect to me, though. Even the smallest of our towns have come along much further, and good ole boys rule the roost in those towns. It is a mystery why Florence's main commercial district--downtown but also Irby, the main commercial thoroughfare--is the armpit of S.C.

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Zahc,

I can't believe you didn't know about the Venus--the only late night/early morning restaurant you need to know about in Florence! It's right on Palmetto near downtown, and is WONDERful for late, late, LATE night food! It's been around forever, and is a classic. Please tell me you found it eventually? FYI, their address is 471 W. Palmetto Street.

Your pics of Florence's sad commercial districts just reinforces what I've been saying for so long about Flo Town: it needs help. It is the saddest of our "larger" towns by far--there's nowhere that even comes close. Don't know what's wrong with the powers-that-be there, but have been told it's the "good ole boys" ruling the town and not wanting change. That seems suspect to me, though. Even the smallest of our towns have come along much further, and good ole boys rule the roost in those towns. It is a mystery why Florence's main commercial district--downtown but also Irby, the main commercial thoroughfare--is the armpit of S.C.

cool beans. The Venus. I will have to check it out...I wasn't born in Florence but the county (Town of Johnsonville where there is no there there)...out in the sticks area...where I'd be tomorrow for Thanksgiving. In the public Main Library now, very beautiful building with good lighting, where I fortunately I've suddenly met of host of my SF kind...I will check out the VENUS after I leave here 'cause I've not eaten all day....Met a wonderful elderly woman who had me rolling about her tales of Florence. She's originally from CHARLESTON & told me about her wild days on the "the strip" that wild section where all the navy fellows used ot hang out in Charleston Heights, and there were lots of bars ad a Trailways bus sation. I don't think it exists anymore.................took some cool shots today in of beautiful abandoned houses on E. Pine and Elm Streets.......Will post later after more adventure....though, I am supposed be working, finishing a manusript that I haven't even looked at since I've been here...Wonderful CHARLESTON was/is a big distraction.

Edited by Zahc

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Venus Pancakes was closed...

DOWNTOWN FLORENCE

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JOHNSONVILLE, Lower Eastern Florence County

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Edited by Zahc

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Venus was probably closed for Thanksgiving... I was there Wednesday and it was packed.

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Flotownscot,

you're probably correct...I ended up having dinner & a couple of martini's at Applebee's on South Irby...not bad.

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Edited by Zahc

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I toured downtown yesterday...Downtown is no longer the bustling, fun place with the Kress store, Sears, Belk & a host of others I fondly remember as a boy & my grandparents used to take me shopping with them, and I would buy cashews or chocolate covered peanuts and treasure the taste underneath a tree shade.

I was very uncomfortable in downtown Florence, though the buildings were beautiful, it was like a ghosttown and the people I came across strange (to me) and paranoid. I got more hostility here in a single hour than I've ever gotten in all of twenty-five years in San Francisco's Tenderloin or 16th Street...I don't think the people I ran into in downtown liked or trusted me very much. I was nearly kicked out of one dirty store on Dargan Street because my camera went off...accidently, I lied to whomever, because he and someone else panicked at the very sight of me. I was there to buy batteries since my camera batteries had just died...and it was the only store I saw in the block (that looked like a store) but inside the place, which was packed with sadly poor & disadvantaged looking people, the whole store smelled of rotten meat & I couldn't believe people were buying food with that sickening aroma. I don't think I'd be touring downtown Florence for another 100 years...It's a shame Florentines have let their jewel of downtown sink so low...

Yep, the old library is a gem. Florence needs to find use for it...Saw that "Bates looking motel" you mentioned and photographed it at every possible angle...It's so bizarre. It would love to go inside of it...and see what kind of "stuff" happens there just once!...One of my auntie's took me shopping last night at Magnolia Mall & I didn't realize until she told me that old Wilson High had moved to a new sprawling campus in the country...so she drove me by to see it. It's as big as Charleston Southern University...

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Is that WHS?

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Is that WHS?

It's one of the McLeod Buildings. It was originally the Women's Pravillion (5 Stories), but they added an additional seven (i think) stories.

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It's one of the McLeod Buildings. It was originally the Women's Pravillion (5 Stories), but they added an additional seven (i think) stories.

The handsome building is my favorite South Carolina high rise I've seen thus far. I must have photographed it now at different angles/lights about 200 times...

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Lake City "Native Son" Memorial...

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Across the Street, an imposing Lake City residence...

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The Hood, East Pine Street, Florence

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Main County Public Library, S. Irby Street, Florence

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"War of Northern Aggression" Grey Victory Historical Marker, E. Palmetto Street, Florence

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KINGSBURG* (JOHNSONVILLE AREA) Lakes / Rod & Gun Club, Sandpit Road, Johnsonville

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*Town of Johnsonville has added water service to KINGSBURG and will more than triple in size with its plans to annex all of mostly rural KINGSBURG into the town limits...



Edited by Zahc

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