With cotton prices low and the boll weevil creeping ever closer, farmers in the “Ridge” counties of Aiken, Edgefield, and Saluda began planting asparagus to supplement their dwindling cotton incomes. Read the Entry »

Located in the coastal plain, Bamberg thrived with the railroad and became the commercial center for surrounding farms and plantations. Read the Entry »

The Bamberg area was originally populated by the Edisto tribe of the Muskhogean Indians. German, Swiss, Scots-Irish, English, and Huguenot settlers began arriving during the mid-eighteenth century. Early in the twenty-first century, despite a declining agricultural economy, Bamberg County remained a heavy producer of corn, soy-beans, wheat, cotton, and sorghum. Read the Entry »

Perhaps Barnwell’s most enduring feature is the 1858 freestanding vertical sundial located in front of the courthouse. It was given to the town by Joseph Duncan Allen, a wealthy planter, politician, and soldier. In 1907 a portion of the five acres given by Benjamin Odom, later containing the Confederate Monument, was named Calhoun Park honoring Clinton Calhoun, longtime mayor of Barnwell. Read the Entry »

For its first 150 years, the Barnwell economy had an agricultural base, but in 1950 the U.S. Government announced plans for the Savannah River Site, a massive nuclear weapons facility that would be located in Aiken and Barnwell Counties. This had a profound effect on Barnwell’s geography and economy. Read the Entry »

William Bartram’s interests were broader than his father’s (John Bartram). In addition to botany, his book contains a great deal of information about animal life and both English and Indian societies. Read the Entry »

Although separated by only a narrow strip of land, the two towns nevertheless developed distinct identities. Read the Entry »

In the antebellum era, Beaufort became a summer retreat for rich Sea Island cotton planters and even richer mainland rice planters, who maintained a wealthy and cultivated society in the town. Read the Entry »

The first half of the twentieth century was a time of hardship in Beaufort, which by then had declined into one of the poorest places in America. Read the Entry »

Named for the beech trees growing in the wetlands of the nearby Savannah River swamp and possibly a dead river island, Beech Island began in the 1680s as Savano Town, an important Indian trading center. Read the Entry »