A Trip to Charleston (and Ben Silver)

Without a doubt Charleston is one of my favorite places. Back in my younger days I spent a couple of years in South Carolina doing graduate work at the University in Columbia. One of my regrets is that I didn’t travel down to Charleston more often.

This past week I was in Columbia for a week and slipped down to Charleston to knock about one day with my friend Seth. Below are a few pictures of the trip, including several from Charleston icon Ben Silver.

Ben Silver is one of the top catalog companies in the country. The goods they carry are top notch. No one can match them when it comes to blazer buttons and authentic regimental ties. A browse on the Ben Silver website might send you into sticker shock but some selective markdown shopping can yield good results (and don’t tell anyone, but you can also find Ben Silver at thrift if you’re lucky).

Contrary to what I have read about some experiences of others, I was treated quite cordially at Silver. I was largely left alone to browse, which I prefer, but my interaction with the young men who were working that day was pleasant.

There is far more to Charleston than you see here, of course. And if you visit make sure you buy plenty of pralines.


We happened to drive by Ben Silver’s warehouse. I’d love to visit for one of their warehouse sales.

BS Warehouse

The main store is more inviting with its famous clock.

BS clock

BS front

BS window 1

BS window 2

BS door

BS Sweaters

BS umbrellas

BS Ties

BS buttons

BS Ties 2

Across the street Alabama’s Billy Reid has invaded:

Billy Reid front

You can have a carriage ride pulled by a mule.


How fortuitous…

Library sale sign

Meeting St

Ceiling tiles

Ben Silver has some local competition from Grady Ervin. It’s hard to beat their R.E. Lee portrait, and I hardly ever see an independent men’s shop like that carry Polo Ralph Lauren these days.

Grady Earvin sign

Grady Ervin - RE Lee

The Garden & Gun offices: another place I wouldn’t mind visiting.

G & G


Honoring Charleston’s defenders:

Defenders statue


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