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Things to Do in Columbia: Tour the Governor’s Mansion

Both residents of, and visitors to, Columbia, South Carolina often make it a point to visit the Governor’s Mansion. This famous landmark was built in 1855 in order to provide a home for Arsenal Military Academy officers. In 1868, it became the future home of each new Governor. Its public rooms contain paintings, silver, furniture and china that tell the history of South Carolina. When dignitaries visit South Carolina they stay in the Governor’s Mansion. Spread throughout the nine acres that make up the yard mansion are both The Caldwell-Boylston House and The Lace House.

Columbia Governors Mansion

What You’ll See & Experience

Surrounding the mansion visitors will see oak tress, elm trees and magnolia plants as well as other types of plants. Outside of the main entrance is a round driveway and a fountain. The main entrance has a flat roof as well as a large pavilion. Not counting rooms such as the kitchen, offices for staff and security and restrooms, the mansion boasts 15 rooms.

Tours of the Governor’s Mansion include a glimpse at its drawing rooms, the state dining room, a smaller dining room called the palmetto and the library. Each room contains antiques from various periods throughout history. Visitors can also see the Railroad Baron’s bed, built in South Carolina. This bed represents the period of the American Empire. The mansion’s Hall of Governors contains portraits of a handful of former mayors of South Carolina. A gift shop can be found in The Caldwell-Boylston House. The mansion’s gardens are open to visitors throughout the year.

Community Events at the Governor’s Mansion

In December 2011, the Governor’s Mansion hosted a Christmas Open House. The mansion was decorated by members of the Columbia Garden Club. The South Carolina Christmas Tree Grower’s Association donated two locally grown trees to serve as the mansion’s Christmas trees. In addition to the lovely decorations, the children of South Carolina made a Butterfly Tree that they dedicated to soldiers who gave their lives during the Iraq war. This tree can also be found at the mansion. The Denmark Technical College Choir and the Carillon Carolers both performed at this event.

The South Carolina Governor’s Mansion is a must-see for anyone new to the area or anyone visiting. They will have a breathtaking experience.

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