Saturday, October 4, 2014

Historic Summerton S.C. in the 1800's

The following are some of the key historic events that occurred in, or had an impact on, Summerton, S.C. during the 1800's:
  • The War of 1812 between U.S. and Great Britain ended in 1814. It was essentially a stalemate, but it did reconfirm America's Independence from Great Britain.
  • The first recorded land purchase in the Summerton area was by Charles Harvin in the 1820's. He bought 69 acres of woodland between Taw Caw and Scott's Branch river.
  • By the 1850's, a number of prosperous plantation owners had built lavish homes in 'Summer Town', where they took their families during the hot summer months.
  • On December 19, 1855, a legislative act was passed establishing the Clarendon District with the same boundaries defined in the Act of 1785. The State Constitution of 1868 would later change districts into counties.
  • Shortly after the re-establishment of Clarendon as a county in 1855, Captain Joseph C. Burgess was selected to determine the geographical center of the county so that a county seat and courthouse could be built. The site that was selected is where the present courthouse stands in the nearby town of Manning.
  • The American Civil War began on April 12, 1861, when Confederate forces fired upon Fort Sumter, a key fort held by Union troops in South Carolina. Eleven states seceded from the Union and formed the Confederate States of America (CSA). South Carolina was the first state to secede from the Union. The war came to an end four years later with Gen. Robert E. Lee's surrender to Gen. Grant at Appomattox Court House on April 9, 1865.
  • In 1865, a body of General Sherman's Union troops under command of General Potter raided Clarendon county. A large portion of the nearby town of Manning, including the court house, was destroyed during "Potter's Raid". The raid took place only a few days before Gen. Robert E. Lee´s surrender at Appomattox.
  • On December 6, 1865, the Thirteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was ratified, thus officially abolishing slavery in the U.S.
  • In July 1868, after the S.C. State Legislature ratified the Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, the state was finally permitted to regain official representation in Congress. The amendment addressed citizenship rights and equal protection of the laws for all citizens, including former slaves.
  • In the years following the Civil War, cotton was still king. There were over a dozen cotton gins within 5 miles of Summerton. This was to end in the early 1900's when the boll weevil pretty much wiped out cotton farmers across the South.
  • On December 24, 1889, the South Carolina Assembly granted a charter  officially incorporating the town of Summerton.
  • In the 1890's, Telegraph systems were introduced into Manning and Summerton.
  • The Spanish American War began in April 1898. Fortunately, the war came to a quick end with the signing of the Treaty of Paris on December 10, 1898.
Learn more about the history of Summerton in Clarendon County, S.C., its people, places, battles, and much more when you visit the Historic Summerton S.C. web site. 


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