This morning, I enjoyed a visit to the Old South Carriage Company in Charleston, South Carolina. My friends Laura and Dick Williams took me down to visit the annex stable and see the new, state-of-the-art carriage that Dick designed for the company.
After more than 1 1/2 years of design work, planning and building, the fiberglass carriage is almost ready for its début in Charleston. Not only is it much lighter in weight than its traditional counterparts, but this carriage also includes additional safety and comfort features for horses and humans alike, such as improved seating, lighting and spring-loaded attachments for a more comfortable ride.
The carriage does retain some traditional components, such as Amish-built shafts of hand-crafted wood. And what carriage would be complete without fringe? That’s one of the final additions that will be made to the canopy in the upcoming days. A sleek, sliding attachment process will allow for the fringe to be easily removed for cleaning or replacement, too.
The horses that greeted us at the barn included Belgian and Percheron drafts that were relaxing in their comfortable stalls in between driving duties. The Old South Carriage Company operates a 65-acre plantation on Johns Island, which is eight miles from the stable. For two or three months annually, each horse enjoys vacation time in large pastures where they leisurely graze under century-old live oaks.
I look forward to my next visit to Charleston, when I can take a tour aboard the new carriage and hang out again with my newest equine friends.