South Carolina Political Collections is proud to host this year’s annual meeting of the Association of Centers for the Study of Congress (ACSC). It will be held May 14-16th at the Ernest F. Hollings Special Collections Library on the campus of the University of South Carolina (registration information here; program out in March). We hope you find this information useful as you plan your trip.
The Hollings Library opened in 2010 with South Carolina Political Collections, Rare Books and Special Collections, and Digital Collections. Visitors enter the Hollings Library via Thomas Cooper, USC’s main library. You’ll know you’ve found Thomas Cooper when you see the big reflecting pool out front. If you plan to drive to Thomas Cooper, the Bull Street Parking Garage next door has hourly parking. Save some time to look at the exhibits of Rare Books and Political Collections while you’re here. We hope to have some new interactive elements in place by then.
A block of rooms is set aside at The Inn at USC at a rate of $120/night for Wed. and Thurs. nights (breakfast & parking included). The block will be available until April 14th or until the rooms are all claimed. In order to receive the rate, you must call The Inn (803-779-7779) and refer to the block Association of Centers for Study Congress Convention–USC Libraries. If you plan to arrive Tuesday, there should be rooms available if you book sooner rather than later.
The Inn sits on the northeast side of campus and is .5 miles from the Hollings Library and a lovely 10-minute walk across USC’s Historic Horseshoe. See map below. We hope to arrange breakfast so that we will all be able to eat together at The Inn (even those not staying there) so stay tuned for more information.
The Columbia Metropolitan Airport is 7 miles (15-20 mins.) from campus. Cabs from the airport to campus are generally around $30-35 and available outside baggage claim on the lower level (not at the main entrance upstairs). If you’re interested in sharing rides, we suggest using the ACSC message board to coordinate.
Meals, except Thursday dinner, are part of your registration. Lunch will be served at the Hollings Library. On Wednesday, our group dinner will be at the renovated, historic Spigner House on the east side of campus, a short walk from The Inn and the Hollings Library. Thursday, SCPC staff members will lead groups to local, favorite dining spots (dutch treat). We’ll put out sign-up sheets at the meeting. If you head out on your own, you’ll find numerous restaurants in nearby Five Points, the Congaree Vista, on campus along Main and Sumter streets, or downtown along Main.
Sites within walking distance:
The meeting doesn’t start until noon on Wednesday, so why not seek out the charm and history of the South Carolina State House or the University of South Carolina campus?
The State House is adjacent to campus and only 4 blocks from The Inn. Take a stroll around its grounds and you’ll come across an eclectic mix (of odd, somber, entertaining, and otherwise) old and new monuments. Make sure to head inside to grab a brochure about the grounds and take in the ornate foyers (upstairs and downstairs). The visitor’s entrance isn’t obvious but you’ll find it on the east side near the African-American History monument.
The jewel of campus (est. 1801) is the Historic Horseshoe, the oldest section of USC and home to the South Caroliniana Library and McKissick Museum. At McKissick you’ll find the USC Visitor’s Center and an excellent exhibit, Bull Street: Forgotten Past and Uncertain Future (Bull Street is the former home of the State Mental Hospital). The Caroliniana Library is the oldest free-standing academic library (1840) in the U.S. Worth a look is the interior of the 2nd floor reading room–it’s a replica of the original Library of Congress reading room–and the exhibit, David R. Coker and the Campaign to Modernize Southern Agriculture.
Places of interest:
Questions? Please ask your Host Committee members (i.e. Herb, Dorothy, and Lori!).