Fun Facts About Columbia, SC
Columbia is the first city in the US named for Christopher Columbus. The name Columbia won over the other popular option, Washington.
Columbia is affectionately known as the “Soda City” by locals, but not because any soda was invented or manufactured there. Instead, the nickname comes from an old abbreviation of Columbia to “Cola.”
The Soda City was founded in 1786, but you won’t see many 18th or early-19th century buildings there. That’s because two-thirds of Columbia burned to the ground during the Civil War when Gen. William T. Sherman entered the City in 1865.
The tallest trees east of the Mississippi are just 20 miles outside of town in Congaree National Park. Congaree has more than two dozen “champion trees” or trees that are the largest of their species.
Riverbanks Zoo is one of fewer than half a dozen zoos in the US that has a permanent koala exhibit. And yes, they are as adorable as you might imagine.
Columbia is home to one of only a handful of dedicated puppet theaters in the nation. The Columbia Marionette Theater was built specifically for this unusual art form, and a show there is like no other puppet show you’ve seen.
Assembly Street in downtown Columbia is remarkably broad for a city street of any time, but it’s even more remarkable when you learn it was designed that way in the 18th century. Why so broad? Local lore says it’s because the early city planners hoped that it would be too wide for mosquitoes to cross.
The first textile mill run entirely by electricity in the world opened in Columbia in 1894. The enormous red brick building that housed the mill is now home to the South Carolina State Museum. You can still see tiny bits of the mill’s spinning machinery that became embedded in the original wooden floors.
Area Codes: 803
Zip Codes: 29044, 29045, 29061, 29063, 29078, 29147, 29169, 29201, 29202, 29203, 29204, 29205, 29206, 29207, 29208, 29209, 29210, 29211, 29212, 29214, 29215, 29216, 29217, 29218, 29220, 29222, 29223, 29224, 29225, 29226, 29227, 29229, 29250, 29260, 29290, 29292
Nearby Cities: Fort Acres, SC; Cayce, SC; Dentsville, SC; Irmo, SC; Lexington, SC; Orangeburg, SC; Newberry, SC’ Sumter, SC; Aiken, SC; Lancaster, SC; Clinton, SC; Union, SC; Rock Hill, SC