Open 11am until 5pm, Monday through Saturday
Free Admission – Donations Appreciated

The South Carolina Maritime Museum

In 1996, the Harbor Historical Association launched a dream to create a museum that would celebrate the maritime history of South Carolina and Georgetown, the state’s second largest port. In 2011, with community support, the South Carolina Maritime Museum opened on the waterfront in historic downtown Georgetown.

Home to the prized Fresnel lens of the old North Island lighthouse, our mission is to create enjoyable experiences for both young people and adults by featuring photographs, documents, artifacts, and interactive exhibits related to South Carolina’s rich and remarkable maritime history.

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2017 Membership Drive

Since opening in December 2011, the museum’s membership has grown to include 150 individual, family, and business members. In 2016, through the support of members like you we were able to secure a USDA loan to purchase our entire building, adjacent parking lot and connecting boat slips, set a new record of 20,000 visitors to the museum, train 127 children in our Youth Sailing Program (> 500 overall), and pull off the biggest and best Wooden Boat Show ever in the aftermath of Hurricane Matthew.

In 2017, we plan to renovate the first and second floors of our building so that we can expand our exhibits and partner with local nonprofits to create rotating educational exhibits, expand both adult and youth programs, and create a functional and attractive space for community and museum events. Help us grow!

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6th Annual Burning of the Socks

The South Carolina Maritime Museum invites you to usher in the coming of spring and the arrival of boating season at the sixth annual Burning of the Socks on Thursday, March 23, 2017 from 5:30 pm until 8:30 pm.

In addition to the sock burning festivities, we will offer Hard Hat Tours of our museum renovations (MORE ABOUT THAT HERE), and serve up some delicious hors d’oeuvres, seafood gumbo, landlubber gumbo, beer, wine, liquor, and live music. Be sure to bring your winter socks.

Photo by Tanya Ackerman, Coastal Observer

More Info & Tickets

Summer Sailing Camp for Ages 8 to 14


Registration for SCMM members begins. Member fee is $180.


Registration is open to all, first come, first served. Non-member fee is $200.

More Info

Meet Our Director

Robert (Mac) McAlister became the director of the SC Maritime Museum in September 2015. Mac is an engineering graduate of Georgia Tech, served as an officer in the Civil Engineers Corps of the U.S. Navy, worked as a construction engineer and manager in several locations, and was a partner in the development of Belle Isle in Georgetown. He is married to Mary Shower McAlister and they have three sons. He and his family are sailors and have twice crossed the Atlantic Ocean in their sailboat. Mac has served on the Board of Directors of the Harbor Historical Association since the SC Maritime Museum opened in 2011. He has written four books of local maritime history, including Wooden Ships on Winyah Bay, The Life and Times of Georgetown Sea Captain Abram Jones Slocum, 1861-1914, The Lumber Boom of Coastal South Carolina, and North Island, A History.