Showmanship makes the tour lively. Peter wears a wide-brimmed hat and 19th-century vintage clothing. He sings a rousing pre-Civil War-era song before he tells about an elaborate masked ball held at one home. “In the 1850s, they loved to boat, to picnic, and to have parties,” he explains. “Some of them lasted until 6 a.m.” By the time he finishes telling about it, you feel as if you were there.
Peter carries a book of photographs to show landmarks such as the Union hospital where Harriet Tubman cared for wounded black soldiers during the Civil War. He also points out the house of Robert Smalls, a former slave who became a five-term U.S. Congressman. He sings about “the yellow peril of Beaufort” to the tune of the “Yellow Rose of Texas” to introduce the yellow structure of the Beaufort Arsenal, now the Beaufort Museum.