From The ‘You Can’t Always Believe What You See on The Internet’ File

It’s a little-known fact — because we haven’t told anyone — that my wife and I are considering moving from Virginia to South Carolina.

I was online today seeking information about one town we’re thinking about: Florence. ‘Went to Wikipedia first, for a good overview. Impressive enough, typos aside, in the article.

Then, having read that several years ago a program was initiated to do some major renovations downtown, I went in search of photos to reveal how that’s working out. The simplest way to find such photos was, I reckoned, to a search of ‘Florence SC+photos’. A display of photos soon after presented itself, and one, in particular, caught my eye. ‘That,’ I thought, ‘looks like Florence, Italy.’ I figured someone had designed a building in South Carolina to look like one in one of Italy’s great art centers.

Alas, it turned out that somehow a photo of that beautiful European city (which I visited once many years ago) somehow got mixed in with ones of South Carolina’s Florence. Odd, that.

Then I started looking closely at some of the other photos — also seemingly not quite right. I’d read that the city had, half or close to a decade ago, initiated major updates to its central city area. The buildings I was looking at certainly hadn’t been ‘modernized’… then I noticed, in one photo, parked cars along one street appeared to be vintage 1950 or earlier. It dawned on me that these were not recent photos, but historic ones.

Overall, the city I was looking at didn’t appear to be one with a population approaching 40,000 — as today’s Florence is. I realized this was a classic example of ‘you can’t always believe what you see or read on the internet’.

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