The town of Summerton, South Carolina got its start back in the early 19th century when plantation owners started heading farther inland from the Santee River. To them, Summerton was a welcome summer respite from the river’s swamps and their malaria carrying mosquitoes.
Originally, the citizens of the small town wanted to call it Summerville, but when they found out South Carolina already had a town by that name, they decided on Summerton. The town was chartered on Christmas Eve 1889 by the South Carolina legislative delegation.
As we mentioned in this week’s Motel Monday, Summerton is perhaps best known for Briggs v. Elliott, the first of four court cases file in the famous Brown v. the Board of Education case which ended racial segregation in U.S. Public Schools in 1954. In 2022, two Summerton schools that featured prominently in the Briggs v. Elliott lawsuit – Summerton High School and Scott’s Branch High School – became part of the Brown v. Board of Education National Historical Park.
People still come from miles around in the summer to spend their family vacations here in Summerton and the surrounding in the summer where they enjoy nature and all kinds of outdoor fun like fishing, camping, and golf.
Stuckey’s of Summerton
What’s more, we’re sure that road warriors, business travelers, and truckers alike stop to relax, refresh, and refuel at the Stuckey’s of Summerton as they’ve been doing at this location since 1969. (However, it should be noted that there was originally a Stuckey’s store located on U.S. 15 in Summerton in the 1950s. The store moved to its current location at Exit 108 when Interstate 95 was built in South Carolina making this the longest running Stuckey’s in the company’s history.)
Even more interesting, this is the only Stuckey’s store that’s run by a member of the Stuckey’s family today. CEO Stephanie Stuckey’s nephew, Will Putnam, owns and operates this store in Summerton as well as the Stuckey’s in Perry, GA.
This Stuckey’s has the more mid- century modern Polynesian inspired cathedral roof recognizable in the later-built Stuckey’s of the 1960’s and 1970s. Walking in to the store, you’ll feel like it’s 1975 and you’re 10 years old again on a summer road trip with the family to Walt Disney World.
Of course, it’s got all of the favorite road trip snacks you remember like our iconic Stuckey’s Pecan Log Rolls, Pecan Divinity, Pecan Pralines and Hunky Dorey. You’ll also find Stuckey’s branded t-shirts and caps and just like yesterday, you’ll still find kitschy state souvenirs to remember your trip from nowadays.
After you’ve finished relaxing, refreshing, refueling and reminiscing, be sure to check out these things to see and do near the Stuckey’s of Summerton:
Amelia Bedelia Statue / Manning, SC
Amelia Bedelia is the title character for a series of children’s books written by Manning native Peggy Parish starting in 1963. Amelia is a housemaid for the Rogers family and takes everything they tell her literally – even idioms and figures of speech. For example, if they ask her to dust the furniture, the Rogers might later find her sprinkling dust on the furniture. She says this is because she comes from a family that takes everything literally. That is, her family didn’t dust the furniture, they “un-dusted” it. Nevertheless, the Rogers soon figure out how to solve Amelia’s literalness by writing down exactly what they want her to do like “un-dust the furniture” or “use the switch to turn off the lights” instead of “turn the lights out”. What’s more, Amelia more than makes up for her mistakes by being a great cook – especially when it comes to desserts.
Peggy Parish wrote nearly a dozen Amelia Bedelia books before her death November 19, 1988. In 1999, Parish’s hometown of Manning honored Parish with a bronze statue of Amelia Bedelia sculpted by James Peter Chaconas. The statue is located outside of the Harvin Clarendon County Library, on the corner of North Brooks and Oak Streets.
Incidentally, after a letter writing campaign by children asking for the Amelia Bedelia series to continue, Peggy’s nephew, Herman Parish, continued the series with the rest of the family’s blessing. He started by writing about Amelia’s own experiences of childhood in 2009 with with Amelia Bedelia’s First Day of School, illustrated by Lynne Averill.
Swamp Fox Murals / Manning, Paxville, Summerton and Turbeville, SC
South Carolinian Brigadier-General Francis Marion, hero of both the French and Indian War and the Revolutionary War is honored in a series of murals throughout Clarendon County. Also known as the “Swamp Fox”, Marion often used irregular warfare tactics when fighting the British. As a result, many military strategists consider him to be one of the founding fathers of guerrilla warfare and his tactics are still used today by the U.S. Army’s 75th Ranger Regiment.
Every mural tells a story of what happened during the Southern Campaign of American Revolution in South Carolina. You can follow the Swamp Fox Murals Trail on Historic 301 through the towns of Manning, Paxville, Summerton, and Turbeville. For those interested in viewing all the murals, a map is of available here.
For more information on the Francis Marion Trail and other Revolutionary War history in South Carolina, you can visit the Clarendon Murals website here.
Huey Cooper Statue / Lake City, SC
Huey Cooper was a man who believed in luck, and throughout his life, it seemed luck was certainly on his side. After all, the police built Mr. Cooper a small building behind the local Dairy Queen where he lived rent-free for years.
What’s more, it seems that Mr. Cooper had so much good luck that he made a living out of selling some of it. For years, he sat up shop on the corner of Acline and Main Streets in Lake City where he charged customers a nickel to rub his lucky rabbit’s foot. He would then take his days wages over to Lake City’s train depot and purchase a bottle of Coca-Cola and a few cigars.
Still, it seems that Mr. Cooper’s luck finally ran out in 1978 when he passed away at the ripe old age of 105.
Years later, however, the good citizens of Lake City felt that they were truly the lucky ones just to know Mr. Cooper. So, in 2014, they decided to honor him by building a statue in his memory. Huey Cooper’s bronze statue by Alex Palkovich shows the cheerful Mr. Cooper sitting on his low-cement wall holding out his lucky rabbit’s foot for any passerby to rub for luck. And it still only cost a nickel that you can deposit in the slot in Mr. Cooper’s right pocket.
You can visit the statue day or night – anytime you need a little luck, really. It’s located on the corner of Acline and Main Streets in Lake City in the same place you could always find Mr. Cooper.
Dr. Ronald E. McNair Memorial Garden / Lake City, SC
Just a short drive down Main Street from Huey Cooper’s statue in Lake City is the statue of another local hero – Astronaut Ronald McNair. Father, husband, doctor, physicist, karate black belt, saxophone player and astronaut, McNair was unfortunately part of the Space Shuttle Challenger mission that fateful January 28 in 1986 when, at 11:39 a.m., the shuttle broke apart 73 seconds into its flight, killing all seven crew members on board.
In 1995, Lake City honored McNair by erecting a memorial featuring a granite wall engraved with all of his accomplishments. The wall also features a cut-out of the Space Shuttle Challenger soaring into space. Standing in front of the wall is a bronze smiling McNair in his Space Shuttle suit and holding his space helmet.
Next to the statue is McNair’s final resting place. He was reinterred here in a sarcophagus in 2005 with a gas street lamp out in front that acts as a sort of “eternal flame”. The Dr. Ronald E. McNair Memorial Garden is located next to the Lake City Public Library at 235 E. Main Street in Lake City.
Whether it’s Summerton, South Carolina or Summerland, California, wherever you’re headed across this great nation of ours, make sure to take some Stuckey’s along for the ride. After all, is it really a road trip without our iconic Stuckey’s Pecan Log Rolls and other pecan treats?
And don’t forget about all of our awesome swag that’ll have you looking and feeling cool all road trip long. What’s more, our coffee and travel mugs make a great souvenir to sip your java juice from while your bragging to your friends and co-workers about great family vacation you just came back from.
Order all of your Stuckey’s road trip snacks and Stuckey’s merch today and get it delivered right to your front door before your next big road adventure – only from stuckeys.com.
Stuckey’s – We’re Making Road Trips Fun Again.
Whether your next road trip is by car or by rail, it’s not really a road trip without taking Stuckey’s along. From our world famous Stuckey’s Pecan Log Rolls to our mouthwatering Hunkey Dorey, Stuckey’s has all the road trips snacks you’ll need to get you where you’re going.
For all of the pecany good treats and cool merch you’ll need for your next big road adventure, browse our online store now!
Stuckey’s – We’re Making Road Trips Fun Again!