The years just before the First World War were a time of great cultural change in the sleepy southern village of Summerville. International attention was focused on Summerville as a health resort and the home of American grown tea at the Pinehurst Tea Gardens. Successful, sophisticated people with education, money and many new ideas were building beautiful homes, becoming part of our social fabric and humming the tune of "Alexander's Ragtime Band."
The Summerville Dorchester Museum is an educational organization dedicated to preserving the historical significance of Summerville and Dorchester County. Its mission is to collect, preserve and exhibit artifacts and to develop educational programs relating to the cultural and natural history of the Summerville and Dorchester County area of South Carolina.
May 02, 1991, a group of concerned citizens organized by Robert Pratt, met for
the first time to consider the formation of a history museum for the
Summerville area. This group continued to grow and meet and in April,
1992, they signed a lease with the Town of Summerville for the old Police
Department building. Work began on the building almost immediately to
renovate it for use as a museum. In December, 1992, the museum opened its
doors to the public. Renovations and installation of exhibits continued,
and in March, 1993, the Summerville Dorchester Museum held its grand opening.