Myrtle Beach History, South Carolina
With more than 14 million tourists annually, Myrtle Beach, South Carolina is a part of a huge complex of seaside resorts spreading along the Atlantic coastline, from Little River to Georgetown. Amongst the millions of tourists who come here for the clean beaches and plentiful entertainment options, many fail to acknowledge that Myrtle Beach is also surrounded in a fascinating folklore and has a incredible history to tell.
Myrtle Beach History – The Beginnings
Myrtle Beach history can be traced along the city’s main route, the Kings Highway. Long before Europeans came to America, the highway was only a trail used by the Waccamaw Indians. Spanish immigrants tried to settle in the area as early as 1526, but they all got sick and died within a year. In the 17th century, the first English settlers arrived on the coasts of Horry County and tried to cultivate indigo and tobacco without a lot of success. The area was nevertheless prolific from another perspective: it was a perfect hiding spot for pirates. Legendary figures like Blackbeard or Drunken Jack are maybe the most popular characters in the area’s folklore. Before 1900, the area remained mostly uninhabited; between the few families living in the area, the most notable were the Whites (they abandoned their house after 1822, when a big hurricane killed 18 family members). Immediately after the Independence War, George Washington traveled to Georgetown following the Kings Highway. Things began to change only at the end of the Civil War, when the Conway Lumber Company built a railway and they founded the first post office.
Myrtle Beach History – The 20the Century
In the late 19th century, Myrtle Beach (known back then as “New Town”) served as a recreational area for the railroad and lumber company employees. The Burroughs & Collins Company decided to transform “New Town” into a real resort and opened the Seaside Inn hotel in 1901. Myrtle Beach actually gained its name following a contest, won by Mrs. F. E. Burroughs who proposed this name. In 1920, the Arcady luxury resort was built north of Myrtle Beach, hosting the first golf club and the famous Ocean Forest Hotel (there are now 115 golf courses in Myrtle Beach). After the devastating effects of Hurricane Hazel in 1954, Myrtle Beach history recorded the greatest economical boom: new hotels, restaurants and attractions were built almost overnight, not to mention the abundance of tourists, especially college students from the East coast who came here at the end of the spring semester. In the latest years, Myrtle Beach has added several amusement parks, hotels and shopping centers and has registered a 36.6 percent growth rate, one of the biggest in USA. Myrtle Beach vacation deals and Myrtle Beach airfare deals will help you make preparations for a summer of fun and adventure in this marvelous seaside resort.
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