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Summerville, S.C.: The “Birthplace of Sweet Tea” -- Who Knew?

A glass of iced tea.

  On a warm day, a cold glass of sweet tea, called by some “the house wine of the South,” goes down mighty nicely.  It’s a drink that’s enjoyed all over the region, but nowhere is it appreciated more than in Summerville, which calls itself “the birthplace of sweet tea.”   According to storyteller and tea enthusiast Tim Lowry, the designation stems from an old soldiers’ reunion held in Summerville in 1890.  


Jan Hersey, who runs the annual Summerville Sweet Tea Festival, shares her mother’s method for brewing the drink.  Both agree that regardless of where in the U.S. one enjoys it, sweet tea is one of the great pleasures of being Southern.