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Selling Lots

Once some roads had been built and lots surveyed, The Fripp island resort began a major marketing effort sell lots. Again Kilgore was limited by lack of funds and had to think creatively. He enlisted a fraternity brother, Van Newman, who had an advertising and public relationship firm in Columbia, to develop promotional materials in exchange for credits towards the purchase of land. Newman developed attractive glossy brochures and flyers that capture well the beauty and charm of Fripp. Some included a logo depicting and the silhouette of legendary pirate Capt. John Fripp in a striking pose. Meanwhile Krell placed a newspaper ad purchase space on billboards and enlisted journalists to write articles. But then as now, many people learn about Fripp from friends and acquaintances.

Archie and Liz Taylor, who purchased a lot in 1961, came to Fripp by boat with Charlie New, a friend from Spartanburg who was also one of the directors of the resort. Some buyers were local folks. A few saw billboard advertising of Fripp on the highway to Florida detoured off to explore and subsequently purchased property in the new resort.

A small two inch ad in Columbia state paper in 1962, caught Bill Winter’s, a chemist chemical engineer and administrator at Savannah River plant in Aiken, was familiar with Fripp island. On several occasions he had joined a group of men from Aiken to go on a fishing trip there. Armed with fishing gear, beer, and supplies, they towed a boat to Hunting Island and then went by boat to Fripp, where they would surf fish along the beguiling beach. With those fond memories of Fripp in mind, winter immediately responded to the ad with a letter of interest. He recalls mailing his letter on Monday morning after seeing the ad in the Sunday paper. On Wednesday evening he and his wife, Dixie, a schoolteacher, had visitors. Krill and his sales assistant, Marion Westerberry, had come from Columbia to talk with Bill and Dixie into buying property on Fripp.

The Winters were definitely interested, so the next step was to visit Fripp. Westerberry was their guide. Dixie remembered taking a boat from Hunting Island and arriving on Fripp to climb a rickety ladder to a rickety dock and then bring ushered into a topless jeep that had no springs and didn’t go very fast. They then were confronted with ticks, mosquitoes, stiffing heat and wild pigs. Dixie’s initial impression was that it was an awful place, but then the most beautiful beach she had ever seen came into view. The fifteen foot sand dunes and wide beach with shells and birds everywhere all won her over. That’s when I first fell in love with Fripp, Dixie said, that very first day on that beach.