In 2003, the Congaree became the nation's 57th national park, the only one in South Carolina. The visitor's center is named for Harry Hampton, who died in 1980. It has been declared an international biosphere reserve, and a globally important birding area. The fact that it is an old-growth floodplain forest makes it the research very important for comparisons with other floodplain forests that may have been more hydrologically altered. The forest is dynamic with its old-growth forest, and it is in some type of equilibrium, but it's very dynamic equilibrium.
The community aspects of the park are also explored.