The Migration from the North to the South and why Georgetown, SC?
I was born and raised in a suburb just north of Detroit, with all the congestion, conveniences and culture that a large city can provide. However, both sides of my family are as southern as you can get, with roots in Tennessee, Arkansas and Oklahoma. So, as I had told my parents for years, the minute I couldn’t make a decent living in the Detroit area I was heading south. My husband, myself, my two girls, two dogs and my mother, did just that in the summer of 2007. The writing was on the wall, and just a few months later, much of the Detroit manufacturing world was out of work and filing for bankruptcy. We threw our ice scrapers out at the Ohio border and never looked back.
But really, why Georgetown, SC ? We’ve always loved Charleston. I spent a couple of decades vacationing in North Myrtle with my North Carolina family and had many fond memories of those visits. We had recently begun bringing our girls to Myrtle for their summer vacations, and the entire family loved the area, but we really didn’t want to be in the MB area full time. After all it’s nice to visit, but….. Charleston had already shown it’s desire to bust at the seems, and big city life, while within a short drive, didn’t need to be at our back door.
For years we had seen articles and ads for Georgetown County in magazines like Coastal and Southern Living, but we really weren’t familiar with it. What I did know I didn’t care for. We had driven from MB to Charleston numerous times through Georgetown, passed the steel and paper mills and really hadn’t seen anything worth stopping for. While visiting friends in Charleston, we decided to take a ride and do some further research. Offer me a ride in a convertible on a sunny day in SC and lunch out, and I’ll probably go just about anywhere.
After the right turn at the steel mill onto Front St, our lives were changed and story was already told. We arrived in this quaint historical town sitting just off Winyah Bay, just minutes to the ocean that the rest of the world seemed to have left behind. We were smitten, to say the least, as so many people before and after us. Georgetown, as happy as it and it’s residents were to be as it was, had the most potential to grow than any other coastal community we had visited and we liked that idea.
Georgetown, SC is the quintessential southern town. As Clemson stated while surveying the area, Georgetown has everything every southern town wants, history, water front, and proximity to the beaches and Charleston. In 2022, Georgetown is looking very good in a real estate market that has seen astronomical inflation all over, but especially in southern coastal towns, like Pawleys Island to Georgetown’s North and Mt. Pleasant to the south. Also, although there’s room for growth, there is a lot of land in conservation, and lots of historical properties that will continue to help maintain the green space and small town feel. Georgetown is bordered by Winyah Bay, with the Black, the Waccamaw, the Pee Dee and the Sampit Rivers flowing through and around it. Bordered on the north by Hobcaw Barony and the south by the Santee Rivers and the Francis Marion National Forest, we will never want for a better outdoor playground.
In full disclosure, if you need to have a Target around the corner, Georgetown is not the place for you. I choose to go to Mt. Pleasant to shop, it’s a little bit farther, but a much more enjoyable ride than north to Myrtle Beach. As of 2022, the only big box store is Walmart and Home Depot is 45 minutes north or an hour south. The Myrtle Beach Airport is 45 minutes, while the Charleston Airport is about an hour and a half, depending on the time of day.
The secret is going to be in allowing Georgetown to grow, while not losing it’s small town appeal. And I for one ,will be watching it all unfold while sitting in one of my favorite watering holes with a cold beer, a beautiful salt air breeze and a view of the Georgetown Harbor.
The Maritime Museum sponsors a youth sailing camp each summer.