Whether you live in McClellanville or have just driven through it once, you have seen the work of Bud Hill. Evidence is all around if you know where to look, but he rarely takes credit for any of it. As director of the Village Museum since its formation in 1999, Selden “Bud” Hill has his hands quite full, but he always has time for the community that he cares so much about.
At the Village Museums last Annual Oyster Roast in November, Bud was finally recognized for all his hard work in the community by being awarded the Order of the Silver Crescent. This is the highest civilian honor awarded by South Carolinas Governors Office for local community service. The Order of the Palmetto is awarded for community service at the statewide level.
The plaque reads “In recognition of the dedication, commitment and leadership for the benefit of South Carolina and her citizens”¦”.
I asked Bud what he considered to be his greatest community service, and without pause he emphatically claimed the Village Museum as his proudest accomplishment ever in his life. He said, “the events I plan give me great pleasure, but they are fleeting. The Museum is something that will outlive me and can be passed down from generation to generation.” The cold cinderblock walls have been warmed with the history of our ancestors and exhibits that show off the past lives of McClellanville. Its these future generations that Bud devotes much of his time to, giving museum and walking tours and visiting local schools to talk about the history of the area and instilling them with a sense of heritage.
As director of one of the finest small town museums in the state, Bud isnt just in charge of the exhibits inside the Village Museum, but also for its advertising, marketing, budgeting, programming, event planning, fundraising, and anything else you can think of! Bud will gladly tell you that none of it would be possible without the generous donations from the community and museum members (which he has grown to over 750 families), but it never would have reached the level that it has without Buds leadership.
Bud does much more than run the Village Museum though. Almost every local event that goes on passes across his desk. He is always willing to help others celebrate their latest achievement with events like book signings, art shows, and concerts. When someone comes up with a good idea, Bud helps them see it to fruition and then gives them all the credit. Hes also been there in times of celebration, sadness, and respect to organize events such as the Veterans Day ceremony and Fourth of July celebrations.
I recently spent an afternoon at the Village Museum in the “Family History Room” upstairs combing through the newspaper articles collected about McClellanville going back to the early 1800s, and Bud was there to help me and expound on each story I read. He has a wealth of knowledge about the area and its people, and more importantly, doesnt mind sharing his knowledge with others.
His genealogy work on the families of McClellanville is vast and growing by the day. As people come to learn more about their families, they share things that are missing and fill in the blanks. Bud is registered with the South Carolina Archives and is always willing to assist people in search of their own family tree.
My fondest memory of Bud goes back to my early teenage years when he had just returned to McClellanville. T.W. Grahams had just gotten a few pool tables, but I didnt have a clue how to play. Bud taught me the principles of the game and a few tricks of the trade. He didnt just tell me how to do it, he took the time to show me until he knew that I got it.
I doubt that this is the “dedication, commitment and leadership” that he was recognized for when awarded by the governor (because I never did become a leader in the pool halls), but it goes to show his character. Bud cares about the Village, its history, its homes, its people, and its future. He simply wants to make McClellanville the best that it can be; nothing more, nothing less.
South Carolina History Lesson:
Name the two symbols featured on South Carolinas state flag?
If you said a palmetto tree and a crescent moon, you were wrong! The crescent shape on South Carolinas flag does not represent a moon, but is probably a gorget, or neck guard. The other item is indeed a palmetto tree and was added to the flag after its logs were used in the construction of Fort Moultries walls and successfully absorbed the British cannon balls.
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