The name South Carolina derived from Latin word Carolus, referring to the king Karl I, like the name North Carolina does. The nickname of South Carolina is "Palmetto State". South Carolina measures 82,932 km2 and has about 4,3 million inhabitants, 30 % of them are Afro-Americans. The capital is Columbia, although Charleston is chosen to be the traditional capital. South Carolina was one of the first colonies which declared their independence from Great Britain on March, 15th 1776 and ratified the Articles of Confederation (the first Constitution of the U.S.A.) on February, 5th 1778. South Carolina joined the 13 colonies as the 8th state on Match 23rd 1788. With the secession from the Union on 20th December 1860 South Carolina initiated the foundation of the confederation, which led right away to the American Civil War, which started 12th April 1861 being caused by firing at Fort Summer.
The influence of South Carolina on the breakout of the war is also reflected in several songs of the soldiers. Next to "Dixie" the "Bonnie Blue Flag" was the most famous and widely-spread song among the army of the southern states.
In the song South Carolina is described as a lonely state (The Bonnie Blue Flag that bears a single star), which is joined by other states bit by bit.
The Congaree National Park of South Carolina is home to the last hardwood forests of the USA measuring 90 km2. Those trees are the tallest trees of the eastern U.S.A. and grow in a swampy area. The national park was founded in 1976 and declared national park on November, 10th 2003. It is a sanctuary for animals and plants and offers camping possibilities, hiking paths, canoeing and bird watching to all visitors.