The South Carolina Encyclopedia by Walter Edgar
Reviewed by Kraig McNutt.
There are single books on South Carolina that are available for the serious student. For example The History of Beaufort County, South Carolina: 1514-1861 will give one a sweeping history of the early origins of SC (early 16th century) up to 1861.
But for the interested student, researcher, or just plain SC admirer one can’t go wrong with this excellent resource: The South Carolina Encyclopedia.
It is compiled by almost 600 authors. The selections are balanced to give the reader a macro view of South Carolina, not just from an historical perspective. I keep it nearby when I’m reading a book about SC or even a magazine article or a web page.
Each article usually is followed by 2-3 recommended books for further reading. There is a nice index too.
One thing that would have made this resource better would have been to bold type each item entry within the text of each article. In other words, one might be reading about Beaufort and find a word in bold in the article (i.e., Robert Smalls) which would key the reader that ‘Robert Smalls’ also has an article entry for the encyclopedia.
It would have also been nice had the editors suggested a few other ‘related’ articles for each entry.
Highly recommended. Every public library should own this.