I added another resource for my ghost towns project. Yesterday at lunch I snuck away to Barnes & Noble and purchased a copy of the South Carolina Encyclopedia. I almost bought this with Christmas money last winter, but I felt I could actually use it now.
As with any other printed encyclopedia, hard decisions have to be made as to what to put in and what to leave out. I find many state-wide reference books tend to be biased toward the coastal regions of the state. I haven’t read enough to see if that’s the case with this book, but I have found some other glaring omissions and problems.
The Encyclopedia has entries for the geological feature, Little Mountain, but says nothing about the town with the same name. It also has an entry for Forty Acre Rock, a similar geological feature. However, there is no entry for Paris Mountain, which is the same type of feature, but is much more prominent. In fact, there is no entry for Richard Pearis, for whom Paris Mountain is named. You would think that the person who pretty much settled Greenville would get some mention. In the Greenville entry, there is only a passing mention of "Pearis’s trading route", but nothing more. You will, however, find extensive entries on Grits and Rock Music. The index is practically useless because there are so many items buried in larger articles such as these.
Given these shortcomings, I’m becoming even more of a believer in the Wiki concept. I would love to see the Humanities Coucil take all of the items and articles that DIDN’T make it into the SC Encyclopedia and place them online in a Wiki format. They would still sell a ton of their books (heck, I bought one), but they would also have an excellent supplement to the Encyclopedia.
[tags]South Carolina Encyclopedia, South Carolina[/tags]