Historical Markers in
Edgefield County, South Carolina

12 Stone Monument A History of Violence Agricultural History Andrew Pickens Benjamin R. Tillman House Benjamin Ryan Tillman Bettis Academy Bettis Academy Big Stevens Creek Baptist Church (Hardy's) Birthplace of General James Longstreet Darby Edgefield Edgefield County Edgefield County Confederate Monument Edgefield County Veterans Memorial Edgefield County World War I Memorial Edgefield United Methodist Church / The Reverend Joseph Moore Edwards Building First Baptist Church / Village Cemetery First Term of Court Francis Wilkinson Pickens George McDuffie Governors and Lieutenant Governors from Edgefield Horns Creek Baptist Church / Revolutionary Skirmish at Horns Creek Horn's Creek Church Industrial History Israel Mukashy Building J. Strom Thurmond J. Strom Thurmond Birthplace James Henry Hammond James Strom Thurmond John Calhoun Sheppard John Gary Evans Johnston Johnston Civil War Monument Johnston Presbyterian Church Johnston Schools / Johnston Educators Lott's Tavern & Post Office Lt. General James Longstreet (1821-1904) Lynch Building M60A3 Main Battle Tank Martha M. Rich Building Milledge Luke Bonham Mt. Canaan Baptist Church Oakley Park Museum Old Law Building Old Simkins Cemetery Original Site of Furman Academy Piedmont Technical College, Edgefield Center Pierce Mason Butler Political Heritage Religion & Education Richard Tutt House / Tutt Cemetery Sheppard's Crossroads The Booth-Toney Shootout of 1878 The Jewish Merchants of Edgefield The Name "Edgefield" Town of Edgefield Parking Lot Turner's Country Store Village Academy / Furman Academy and Theological Institute Welcome to Historic Edgefield Welcome to Historic Edgefield William Johnston
South Carolina was the first state to secede from the Union, but it was also the last state to rejoin the Union after the Civil War. Reconstruction in the state was marked by violence and political turmoil.
Edgefield County, located in South Carolina, has a rich history that dates back to the early colonial period. The area was originally settled by European colonists in the early 1700s, with the town of Edgefield founded in 1785. The county was named after its location on the "edge" of the former Native American territories, which were being increasingly encroached upon by European settlers.

During the Revolutionary War, Edgefield played a significant role, with its citizens actively involved in the fight for independence. Notably, the infamous Battle of Musgrove Mill took place in the county in 1780, where local militia successfully repelled a British attack. Edgefield County also produced several influential political figures, including several governors and prominent politicians.

In the early 19th century, Edgefield became known as the "Home of Southern Statesmen" due to its many influential politicians who hailed from the area. The county had a strong agricultural economy, with cotton production being the primary industry. The region was also notorious for its high number of duels, which often settled political disputes.

As the 19th century progressed, Edgefield County experienced significant social and economic changes. The expansion of railroads and the decline of the plantation system, coupled with the aftermath of the Civil War, led to widespread poverty in the region. However, Edgefield County persevered, and by the 20th century, new industries and improvements in infrastructure helped revive the local economy.

Today, Edgefield County is a vibrant community that celebrates its heritage and maintains a balance between agriculture, industrial development, and historical preservation. The county's rich history is evident in its numerous historic sites, including the Old Edgefield District Genealogical Society and the National Wild Turkey Federation Museum. With a strong sense of community and a dedication to preserving its past, Edgefield County continues to thrive and evolve while honoring its roots.

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

  • 1785: Edgefield County is established as a part of Ninety-Six District.
  • 1786: Edgefield becomes its own district with its county seat in Edgefield Village.
  • 1812: The town of Edgefield is incorporated.
  • 1825: Construction begins on the Edgefield Railroad.
  • 1830s-1850s: Edgefield thrives as a center of cotton production and political influence.
  • 1861-1865: Edgefield County sends many troops to fight in the Civil War.
  • 1871: The town of Edgefield is reincorporated.
  • Early 1900s: Edgefield suffers economically due to the decline of agriculture.
  • 1930s: The Works Progress Administration (WPA) helps to improve infrastructure and create jobs in Edgefield County.
  • Present: Edgefield County is known for its historic charm, agriculture, and outdoor recreational opportunities.