7 Revolutionary War Hiking Trails in SC’s Old 96 District

Fall is the perfect time for hiking in South Carolina. And on South Carolina’s Freshwater Coast, the cooler weather is not just great for leaf-peeping: we’ve got trails that are steeped in history and heritage as well as natural wonder. Revolutionary War trails at Musgrove Mill State Historic Site and Ninety Six National Historic Site […]

5 Places in Old 96 to Experience History

If history and heritage are your thing, it’s time to plan a tour of South Carolina’s Freshwater Coast. Our area boasts miles and miles of shoreline, state parks, and opportunities for adventure, and underlying it all are hidden gems of South Carolina history. We’ve got 5 stops in the Old 96 District for you to […]

What’s in a Name? SC’s Old 96 District

Why is this area of South Carolina called the Old 96 District? From all reports our region was named after a judicial district dating back to the Colonial era when law and order came to the South Carolina backcountry. This area was 96 miles down from the Cherokee Path around Keowee, a major Cherokee town […]

Memorial Day Reminds Us to Spend Time on an American Revolutionary War Battlefield

This is an excerpt written by Dawn Weaver, Park Manager at Musgrove Mill Historic State Park in Clinton, SC, about Musgrove Mill State Historic Park.  This was written on May 28, 2018, to honor the brave men and women who sacrificed their lives, so we could be free. With Dawn’s permission, we reprint this article. […]

Ninety Six, SC-A Town Of the Stars!

When you look around Ninety Six, South Carolina, the Star symbol is everywhere. But how many people know the history of Ninety Six’s famous Star Fort? In December 1780 the Loyalists started building the Star Fort, but it was not finished until early 1781. A Star design for a fort was not popular, it was […]

Olympian of the Woods Celebrated in South Carolina’s Old 96 District

As the world’s best athletes compete at the PyeongChang 2018 Winter Olympic Games, the “Olympian of the Woods,” may be taking flight near you. With five species located across North America (every state but Alaska), the wild turkey is known as the “Olympian of the Woods” with running speeds of 25 MPH and flight speeds […]

Dr. Benjamin E. Mays–Mentor to Martin Luther King, Jr.

If it weren’t for Dr. Benjamin E. Mays, would the world know Martin Luther King Jr? Probably not. Mays, a Greenwood, SC, native and Civil Rights activist, mentored King during his years at Atlanta’s Morehouse College. Mays served as president of Morehouse College (now Morehouse University) from 1940 to 1967. He also advised Presidents Kennedy, […]

Laurens County SC-A Destination Filled With History

During the Revolutionary War, the area that would soon become  Laurens County was the site of four significant battles, including Musgrove Mill on August 18, 1780. Today, the Musgrove Mill State Historic Site marks the location of this battle. The visitors center at the park documents the role South Carolina patriots played in winning American […]

Where is the Home of Ten Governors of South Carolina?

National Geographic Magazine addressed a frequently voiced question: “Are Edgefield’s ten governors real native sons, or men adopted to support an extravagant claim by the local Chamber of Commerce?” To answer this question, one must delve into facts of these ten Edgefield statesmen. Andrew Pickens, Jr. (1816-1818) was a son of Gen. Andrew Pickens of […]

The ABC’s of the Wild Turkey: Thanksgiving Table Talk

In case you want to dazzle the kinfolk over the dinner table at this year’s Thanksgiving celebration, here’s a heaping helping of turkey trivia-from A to Z! Alaska This is the only state where wild turkeys can’t be found – not because it’s too cold, but because the state doesn’t have a long growing season. […]

Historic Musgrove Mill Home of Revolutionary Battle of Patriots and Loyalists

My destination was Musgrove Mill State Historic Site in Laurens County, off Highway 56 near Clinton, SC. I began my trip at the canoe launch off Horseshoe Road on the west side of the Enoree River. It was a warm, late summer afternoon, but the light breeze reminded me that the cooler days of fall […]

Celebrating Black History Month

The story of Black History Month began in 1915, half a century after the Thirteenth Amendment abolished slavery in the United States. That September, the Harvard-trained historian Carter G. Woodson and the prominent minister, Jesse E. Moorland, founded the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History (ASNLH), an organization dedicated to researching and […]

Antiquing & Collecting in Old 96 District South Carolina

The act of acquiring things that are no longer perfect has many names. Picking, antiquing, collecting, restoring. We call it junkin’ and pickin’. If you find yourself regularly milling through antique stores and flea markets, searching for a piece of America’s history, you are one of us; a curator of American culture. The Old 96 […]

Walk Where Battles Were Fought and Heroes Were Forged

The Ninety Six National Historic Site was the site of the very first southern land battle of the Revolutionary War in November 1775 south of New England. Seeking to push the British out of their last stronghold in South Carolina, American Gen. Nathanael Greene attacked on May 22, 1781. Anticipating Greene’s arrival, Loyalists soldiers erected […]

Train Cars in Old 96 District

What is it about trains that brings out the kid in all of us? The train cars at the Railroad Historical Center in Greenwood, SC and Caboose No. 5759 at The McGowan-Barksdale-Bundy House will certainly do the trick. Railroad Historical Center With seven vintage train cars, plus gardens and exhibits, the Railroad Historical Center in Greenwood, SC […]

Finding the Long Cane Massacre Historical Site

The Long Cane Massacre is a bit of tragic history tucked away at the end of a dusty road in Troy, South Carolina.     If you aren’t watching for the historical markers, you might just miss the site of a significant event in the settlement of South Carolina.     Following the signs, the […]

The Phoenix Factory’s Old Edgefield Pottery is History in Your Hands

The Phoenix Factory’s Old Edgefield pottery continues the longtime tradition of Edgefield Pottery, pottery made in the Old Edgefield District of South Carolina from about 1820 to the early twentieth century. Owning a piece of Edgefield is like holding a small piece of history in your hands. Much of the Edgefield pottery was made before […]

Preserving Area History

Teresa Kemp is passionate about preserving the history and traditions of the African-American population in McCormick County. The South Carolina Wild’s Heritage Center is now open in the former train depot in downtown McCormick. Interactive exhibits and activities, a Children’s Corner and plantation quilts are just a small part of what lies in store for visitors! […]

Jars and Faces. Pottery and Places.

Jars and Faces. Pottery and Places. Over 4,500 years ago, Native Americans along the Savannah River discovered how to create pottery, using Spanish moss, palmetto fibers and the rich clay deposits in the Edgefield, South Carolina area. Edgefield pottery was alkaline glazed, unlike pottery from outside the South. Edgefield pottery first appeared around 1820 when […]

Gray Court Alive with History

The US is a relatively young nation, and much of the architecture you’ll find around the country is too. It’s rare to find an intact building more than about 150 years old. Early settlers built farms, with the intention of improving their living quarters as time and money permitted. Most people stayed close to home […]

Trains Are a Part of Old 96 District History

The development of railroads was one of the most important phenomena of the Industrial Revolution. With their formation, construction and operation, they brought profound social, economic and political change to our country. Like many small communities across America, the Old 96 District was greatly influenced by the railroad. The District has two particularly interesting sites […]

Two Battles for Freedom Took Place in the Old 96 District

The Ninety Six National Historic Site in Ninety Six, SC is the home of the first Southern land battle of the Revolutionary War in 1775. The original earthen Star Fort constructed in 1781 by British Loyalists was the site of a bloody 28-day battle, the longest of the war. This national park has a reconstructed […]

Atlanta Voice/Atlanta Tribune

The story of Black History Month begins in 1915, half a century after the Thirteenth Amendment abolished slavery in the United States. That September, the Harvard-trained historian Carter G. Woodson and the prominent minister Jesse E. Moorland founded the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History (ASNLH), an organization dedicated to researching and […]

What’s with the name Old 96 District?

What’s with the name Old 96 District? Old 96 District, what kind of name is that? Well, let us tell you the story. Named after a judicial district dating back to the Colonial era when law and order came to the South Carolina backcountry, this region was 96 miles down the Cherokee Path from Keowee, […]

Discovery Time off I-20 at Exit 18

Take Exit 18 off Interstate 20 off the beaten path and discover Edgefield County, an area covered in history. Over 4,500 years ago, Native Americans along the Savannah River discovered how to create pottery, using Spanish moss, palmetto fibers and the rich clay deposits around the grounds of the Edgefield. Many pieces of Old Edgefield […]

McGowan-Barksdale-Bundy House an Architectual Delight

The McGowan-Barksdale-Bundy House is an architectual delight. Known as “The Generals’ House”, the McGowan-Barksdale-Bundy House in Abbeville, SC is an excellent example of the Queen Anne style, characterized by towers, turrets, multi-faceted roofs and windows and various textures of exterior material. Completed in 1888, the house has 4 levels. Behind the main house are 3 servant […]

Musgrove Mill State Historic Site

Musgrove Mill’s peaceful setting in the Piedmont woods in Clinton, SC, stands in sharp contrast to the bloody Battle of Musgrove Mill that took place there on Aug.19, 1780. The Revolutionary War historic sites at Musgrove Mill interpret and protect the location of the Battle of Musgrove Mill. The battle, in which the vastly outnumbered […]

Historic Willowbrook Cemetery

Historic Willowbrook Cemetery in Edgefield is Final Resting Place for Historical Figures Willowbrook Cemetery is the second most historic cemetery in South Carolina, and is overflowing with “residents” who carved their place in local, state, and national history. The oldest marked grave in Willowbrook belongs to Pierre LaBorde who was a native of France and […]

Equal Rights with Freedom for All

Equal Rights: two men + two visions = Freedom for All The Story of Dr. Benjamin Mays & Dr. Martin Luther King Benjamin Elijah Mays was born the youngest of eight children in the community of Epworth in Greenwood County, South Carolina on August 1, 1894. A son of former slaves, Mays’ childhood played a key role in shaping […]

Experience the Revolutionary War – Old 96 District

In the early days of our nation, the original colonies, with the exception of port cities, were largely unsettled. As settlements grew more populated, the British government divided these unincorporated areas into districts.

History Comes Alive in Ninety Six

The Old 96 District is an ideal getaway. An abundance of freshwater coastline offers up ample opportunity for the avid angler, boater, or kayak enthusiast, or those who simply want to enjoy a view of the lake. Wooded trails are everywhere and provide the perfect venue for biking, hiking, and enjoying nature.

Musgrove Mill State Park: Step Back in Time and Walk Through History

Musgrove Mill State Park and Historic Site is located just off of I-26, on the northeast edge of Sumter National Forest. There are 2.3 miles of walking trails winding their way through this historic site, immersing the hiker in Revolutionary War history, providing an opportunity to enjoy the beauty of the South Carolina piedmont.

The Burt-Stark House-A Walk Back in Time

There’s no shortage of vacation destinations in South Carolina, that’s for sure. Whether you crave culture and crumpets in Charleston, or tee time on the unmatched links of Hilton Head Island, South Carolina can provide a pleasant and memorable vacation. But, if you long for all these things and more, your ideal destination is Old District 96.

Hundreds of Historic Churches in the Old 96 District

Whether you have a special affinity for churches because of your religious or spiritual background, or you simply appreciate and embrace the stunning designs of church architects from days gone by, you’ll enjoy visiting (or even attending services) at the historic churches in the Old 96 District. There are approximately 421 churches in the surrounding counties of Abbeville, Greenwood, and McCormick; here’s a closer look at three of the many Historic Churches in the Old 96 District

Bettis Academy and Junior College, Trenton, SC

Bettis Academy and Junior College, established in 1881 and closed in 1952, is significant for its role in the primary, secondary, and higher education of African Americans in what is now parts of Edgefield and Greenwood Counties from the late nineteenth through the mid-twentieth century.

Explore South Carolina’s Freshwater Coast Trails and Palmetto Backcountry like Never Before

Known for the region’s historic importance through the Civil and Revolutionary wars, the five counties that make up the Old 96 District are home to tons of trails and secret stashes of freshwater. The Old 96 District is rich with activities for nature lovers and adventure-seeking explorers.

Quilt Trails in McCormick

Exactly what is a “quilt trail?” It is simply any number of quilt panels strewn across the towns and/or countryside, coaxing the viewers from one to the next. They may pay tribute to individuals or honor an organization. But they all accomplish the same things–they enhance the environment and add to the viewer’s pleasure. Currently, […]

Jars with Faces and Pottery with Places

Over 4,500 years ago, Native Americans along the Savannah River discovered how to create pottery, using Spanish moss, palmetto fibers and the rich clay deposits around the grounds of the Edgefield, South Carolina area. One of the most famous potters during that time was Dave the Potter, a literate slave, who created his own pottery […]