The Button Capital Of The World Is Hiding In Small Town South Carolina And It's As Weirdly Wonderful As You'd Expect
Talk about unusual museums that have graced the Palmetto State over the years! We’d be remiss on this subject if we didn’t include a feature here on the Button Museum, which still stands in Bishopville. Its creator, Mr. Dalton Stevens, who single-handedly earned the city the title of Button Capital of the World, was a musician and an artist. Stevens passed away in November 2016, but his Button Museum and works of button art are still in place, although the facility isn’t open quite as often as it was when Stevens was still alive.
Stevens' story began long before 1983, the year he began to apply buttons to all his favorite objects.
Prior to that, Stevens seemed to always have an affinity and desire to sew buttons onto things.
He was also a musician. And at his Button Museum you'll find much evidence of that fact, including a button-covered piano. Completely laced with glued-on buttons everywhere - except the keys.
Some of his guitars and other string instruments are also featured in the museum and are adorned with colorful arrangements of buttons in all sizes and shapes.
But it is his vintage hearse that turns the most heads. With buttons applied in all sorts of decorative patterns, the car is truly a work of art — and covered from top to bottom with buttons!
Stevens left no surface uncovered. Even the inside of the car is decorated!
The hearse, alone, has more than 600,000 buttons on the inside and out. Just think about that small jar of buttons you may have stashed in your linen closet - and then multiply that by a few hundred thousand or so and you'll get the picture.
With Stevens' passing in 2016, we're not sure of the fate of the Button Museum in the coming years. Reviews continue to be posted on Google by folks who've gained access but the phone number listed on the search engine no longer works.
In other words, if you're traveling a long distance to get a look inside the Button Museum, it just may be hit or miss when you arrive.
Did you know South Carolina is the button capital of the world? Ever visited the Button Museum?
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Button Museum, 53 Joe Dority Rd, Bishopville, SC 29010, USA