As the Foundation continues it’s 50th Anniversary Year, we want to give you a closer look into our collection.
Historic Columbia Foundation maintains a permanent collection of more than 6,500 historic artifacts. The collections span the 18th, 19th and early 20th centuries and form the basis of interpretation at our historic houses. Objects vary in composition, size and value with major categories in the permanent collection including textiles, decorative arts, fine arts, tools and historic images. A portion of collection items are viewable here.
Take a look at this month’s featured Collection Item, the Jo Jo Flask, early 1900s. This piece will be on display at the Robert Mills House in a new exhibit opening at the end of July. Stay tuned for more information on the new exhibit!
Nick-named “Ben Tillman’s Baby” by his critics, the South Carolina Dispensary was founded by Governor Ben Tillman in 1893 and was located in Edgefield, South Carolina. This was the first and only attempt by any state to control the production and sale of all forms of liquor; the experiment lasted from 1893 until 1907 state-wide and as late as 1916 in some counties. From 1898 to 1907, the building that currently houses the Publix grocery store, 501 Gervias Street, was used as a liquor-bottling warehouse for the South Carolina Dispensary.
The bottles used by the Dispensary were available in four different sizes and came with varying logos. One of the more common bottles was called the “Jo Jo flask”. The most recognizable logos are the Palmetto tree and the Dispensary’s monogram- an interlocking “S”, “C”, and “D”. Featuring a similar interlocking “SC”, the University of South Carolina baseball team’s new logo bears a “strike”-ing resemblance to the SC Dispensary’s iconic monogram.
If you wish to donate historic artifacts from your personal collection to Historic Columbia Foundation, please contact John Sherrer, Director of Cultural Resources at email@example.com or 803.252.1770 ext. 28.
HCF’s Historic House Museums feature a variety of collection pieces. To learn more about visiting, click here.