On June 28 South Carolinians will celebrate the 237th Carolina Day, commemorating the Battle of Sullivan’s Island. On June 28, 1776, an assault by combined British naval and military forces was made to seize Charles Town, at the time the fourth largest city in British North America, but far and away the wealthiest city in Britain’s American empire. Responding to this attack was a small force of Carolinians (South Carolinians, North Carolinians, and Native Americans) commanded by Colonel William Moultrie and Colonel William “Danger” Thomson.
Defending Breach Inlet and Fort Sullivan, a partially completed palmetto fort, the Carolinians defied the odds and successfully repelled the invasion force. Their spectacular victory over the might of the British Empire dampened British hopes for quickly subduing the rebellion in the American colonies and greatly strengthened Patriot resolve for Independence.
The Carolina Day celebration was born of this great victory. On June 28 we urge South Carolinians and visitors to our state to come to the Battery and take part in a traditional community celebration, which is in many ways similar to that first Carolina Day in 1777. Church bells will sound in Charleston and on Sullivan’s Island. At 10 a.m. that morning, a service of thanksgiving will take place at St Michael’s Church.
Following the service, historic organizations will gather at Washington Park, and at 11 a.m. they will parade down Meeting Street to the Sgt. Jasper monument at the Battery for a wreath-laying ceremony. There, Dr. Michael Kogan will give the annual address, followed by a concert by the Charleston Community Band. The celebration of Carolina Day will continue at Fort Moultrie on Sullivan’s Island where re-enactors from the 2nd South Carolina Regiment and a Revolutionary War medical team will encamp and give period demonstrations from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. We hope that you will join us on June 28 in celebrating this important chapter in our state’s rich heritage.
Samuel W. Howell
Chairman, Palmetto Society