Historical Markers in
Beaufort County, South Carolina

1st SC Infantry Of African Descent A Guiding Light A Life-Saving Light Station A National Cemetery System Address by President Lincoln African Methodist Episcopal Church Beginnings Aqui Estuvo España Baptist Church of Beaufort Barrow Hall Battery Saxton Battle of Port Royal Battle of Port Royal Battle of Port Royal Island Beaufort Beaufort Arsenal Beaufort College Beaufort County, South Carolina Beaufort Female Benevolent Society Beaufort Historic District Beaufort National Cemetery Beaufort South Carolina Tricentennial Berean Church / J. I. Washington Branch Library Beth Israel Synagogue Black Troops on Hilton Head Bluffton United Methodist Church Bluffton, S.C. Brigadier General Stephen Elliott CSA Capt. Brodstrom Marker U.S.M.C. Chapel of Ease Charles Cotesworth Pinckney Charlesfort-Santa Elena Site Charlie Simmons, Sr. Cherry Hill School Christensen-Fordham Building Church of Prince William's Parish Church of the Cross City Meat Market & Firehouse Colonel John Barnwell Combahee River Raid / Freedom Along The Combahee Dr. Henry Woodward, Surgeon 1646-1686 Emancipation Day • Camp Saxton Site First African Baptist Church First African Baptist Church First Fort First Presbyterian Church Fish Hall Plantation Fort Howell Fort Howell - 1864 Fort San Marcos Fort San Marcos & The Ribaut Monument Fort Sherman Fort Walker Forts of the Civil War Era Fuel for the Flame General Howell / Captain Suter Grand Army of the Republic Hall Harvesting Drinking Water Hilton Head Hilton Head Island Hilton Head Island Veterans Memorial History Of The Dolphin Head Area Home at the Lighthouse Hunting Island Light Station In Honor Of All Veterans In Honor Of Edith M. Dabbs and James McBride Dabbs In Memoriam Island Delivery Service Japanese 75mm Field Gun Jean Ribault Monument Lighthouse Keepers Home Mather School Maxcy - Rhett House / "Secession House" Michael C. Riley Schools Mitchelville and Abolitionists Mitchelville Building Sites Mitchelville Site Northern Most Known Bastion of Spanish Florida Palmetto Bluff Palmetto Bluff Parris Island Indians Parris Island Lighthouses Parris Island Plantations Peatross Parade Deck Penn School Pinckney Island Plane Crash Memorial Prince William's Parish Church Queen Chapel A.M.E. Church Re-interred 19 African-American Civil War Volunteers Reconnecting with Family Religion in Mitchelville/School in Mitchelville Revolutionary War Ambush Richard Heron Anderson Richard V. Woods Memorial Bridge Robert Smalls Ruins of Old Sheldon Sheldon Union Academy Site of the Old Baptist Meeting House St. Helena's Church St. Helena's Episcopal Church St. James Baptist Church St. Luke's Church St. Peter Catholic Church Steam Gun Stephen Elliott, Jr Brigadier General C.S.A. Tabernacle Baptist Church The Baptist Church of Beaufort The Barrel Landing Schoolhouse The Battle of Port Royal / William Fitzhugh and Black Sailors in the Union Navy The Capt. Francis Saltus House The Dawn of Freedom: Mitchelville The First Inhabitants The Great Sea Island Storm The Historic Union Church The Sam Levin Building The Story of Fort Howell The Troops that Built Fort Howell / Camp Baird The Wallace House Thomas Fenwick Drayton Thomas Heyward, Jr. To Purple Heart Recipients Two Gallant Gentlemen from South Carolina Uncommon Valor Verdier House Wesley Methodist Church William Bull William Simmons House Working for Wages/Freedmen’s Bureau World’s Largest Figurative Sundial Zion Chapel of Ease and Cemetery "Robbers Row"
South Carolina was the birthplace of the modern American barbecue tradition. In the early 19th century, African slaves in the state developed a technique for slow-cooking meat over a wood fire, which became known as "barbecue." Today, South Carolina is known for its distinctive mustard-based barbecue sauce, which is popular in the central part of the state.
Beaufort County, located in the state of South Carolina, has a rich and complex history that stretches back centuries. The area was originally inhabited by Native American tribes, including the Yemassee and Coosawhatchie peoples. The first European settlers arrived in the 16th century, with Spanish explorer Pedro Menendez de Aviles establishing a short-lived settlement on Parris Island in 1566.

During the colonial era, Beaufort County played a significant role in the development of the region. The town of Beaufort, founded in 1711, became an important port and center of trade. It was also a major hub for plantation agriculture, with rice and indigo being the primary crops. The county thrived economically, drawing wealthy plantation owners and enslaved Africans to the area.

The county played a significant role in both the Revolutionary War and the American Civil War. During the Revolutionary War, Beaufort County was occupied by British forces, leading to the destruction of many plantations. In the Civil War, the county was a key target for Union forces, who captured the town of Beaufort and surrounding areas early in the conflict. The area remained under Union control for the duration of the war and became a haven for formerly enslaved individuals.

In the post-war period, Beaufort County experienced a period of slow recovery. The abolition of slavery brought significant changes to the social and economic fabric of the county, as former enslaved individuals sought to establish new lives and opportunities. In the 20th century, Beaufort County became a popular tourist destination, known for its natural beauty and historic charm. Today, the county continues to thrive as a popular tourist destination and as a hub for military activity due to the presence of several military bases.

This timeline provides a concise overview of the key events in the history of Beaufort County, South Carolina.

  • 1514: The area that is now Beaufort County is explored by Spanish conquistadors.
  • 1663: Beaufort County is officially established as part of the Carolina Colony.
  • 1711: Port Royal is settled by the French, becoming the first European settlement in the county.
  • 1739: Beaufort is founded by the English as the second oldest city in South Carolina.
  • 1783: The American Revolutionary War ends, and Beaufort County becomes part of the newly-formed United States.
  • 1824: Beaufort County is divided into multiple counties, including present-day Beaufort and Jasper counties.
  • 1861: The Civil War begins, and Beaufort County is occupied by Union forces for most of the war.
  • 1868: The Reconstruction Era begins, and Beaufort County sees significant changes and political reforms.
  • 1959: The Penn Center is established on St. Helena Island, promoting education and civil rights for African Americans.
  • 1980: The Beaufort Historic District is added to the National Register of Historic Places.
  • 2000: Beaufort County experiences rapid population growth and becomes a major tourist destination.