Charleston, South Carolina
Charleston is the oldest and largest city in the U. S. state of South Carolina, the county seat of Charleston County, the principal city in the Charleston–North Charleston–Summerville Metropolitan Statistical Area. The city lies just south of the geographical midpoint of South Carolina's coastline and is located on Charleston Harbor, an inlet of the Atlantic Ocean formed by the confluence of the Ashley and Wando rivers. Charleston had an estimated population of 134,875 in 2017; the estimated population of the Charleston metropolitan area, comprising Berkeley and Dorchester counties, was 761,155 residents in 2016, the third-largest in the state and the 78th-largest metropolitan statistical area in the United States. Charleston was founded in 1670 as Charles Town, its initial location at Albemarle Point on the west bank of the Ashley River was abandoned in 1680 for its present site, which became the fifth-largest city in North America within ten years. Despite its size, it remained unincorporated throughout the colonial period.
Election districts were organized according to Anglican parishes, some social services were managed by Anglican wardens and vestries. Charleston adopted its present spelling with its incorporation as a city in 1783 at the close of the Revolutionary War. Population growth in the interior of South Carolina influenced the removal of the state government to Columbia in 1788, but the port city remained among the ten largest cities in the United States through the 1840 census. Historians estimate that "nearly half of all Africans brought to America arrived in Charleston", most at Gadsden's Wharf; the only major antebellum American city to have a majority-enslaved population, Charleston was controlled by an oligarchy of white planters and merchants who forced the federal government to revise its 1828 and 1832 tariffs during the Nullification Crisis and launched the Civil War in 1861 by seizing the Arsenal, Castle Pinckney, Fort Sumter from their federal garrisons. Known for its rich history, well-preserved architecture, distinguished restaurants, hospitable people, Charleston is a popular tourist destination.
It has received numerous accolades, including "America's Most Friendly " by Travel + Leisure in 2011 and in 2013 and 2014 by Condé Nast Traveler, "the most polite and hospitable city in America" by Southern Living magazine. In 2016, Charleston was ranked the "World's Best City" by Travel + Leisure; the city proper consists of six distinct districts. Downtown, or sometimes referred to as The Peninsula, is Charleston's center city separated by the Ashley River to the west and the Cooper River to the east. West Ashley, residential area to the west of Downtown bordered by the Ashley River to the east and the Stono River to the west. Johns Island, far western limits of Charleston home to the Angel Oak, bordered by the Stono River to the east, Kiawah River to the south and Wadmalaw Island to the west. James Island, popular residential area between Downtown and the town of Folly Beach where the McLeod Plantation is located. Cainhoy Peninsula, far eastern limits of Charleston bordered by the Wando River to the west and Nowell Creek to the east.
Daniel Island, fast-growing residential area to the north of downtown, east of the Cooper River and west of the Wando River. The incorporated city fit into 4–5 square miles as late as the First World War, but has since expanded, crossing the Ashley River and encompassing James Island and some of Johns Island; the city limits have expanded across the Cooper River, encompassing Daniel Island and the Cainhoy area. The present city has a total area of 127.5 square miles, of which 109.0 square miles is land and 18.5 square miles is covered by water. North Charleston blocks any expansion up the peninsula, Mount Pleasant occupies the land directly east of the Cooper River. Charleston Harbor runs about 7 miles southeast to the Atlantic with an average width of about 2 miles, surrounded on all sides except its entrance. Sullivan's Island lies to the north of Morris Island to the south; the entrance itself is about 1 mile wide. The tidal rivers are evidence of drowned coastline. There is a submerged river delta off the mouth of the harbor and the Cooper River is deep.
Charleston has a humid subtropical climate, with mild winters, hot humid summers, significant rainfall all year long. Summer is the wettest season. Fall remains warm through the middle of November. Winter is short and mild, is characterized by occasional rain. Measurable snow only occurs several times per decade at the most however freezing rain is more common. However, 6.0 in fell at the airport on December 23, 1989, the largest single-day fall on record, contributing to a single-storm and seasonal record of 8.0 in snowfall. The highest temperature recorded within city limits was 104 °F on June 2, 1985, June 24, 1944, the lowest was 7 °F on February 14, 1899. At the airport, where official records are kept, the historical range is 105 °F on August 1, 1999, down to 6 °F on January 21, 1985. Hurricanes are a major threat to the area during the summer and early fall, with several severe hurrican
Isle of Palms, South Carolina
Isle of Palms is a city in Charleston County, South Carolina, United States. At the 2010 census, the population was 4,133. Isle of Palms is a barrier island on the South Carolina coast; the city is included within the Charleston-North Charleston-Summerville metropolitan area and the Charleston-North Charleston Urbanized Area. The town lies along a narrow strip of land, hugging the beach, separated from the mainland by the Intracoastal Waterway, it is an affluent community of both vacation home owners and year-round residents, with large beachfront homes and local restaurants. Beach volleyball is popular in the summer, the "Windjammer" club hosts several tournaments throughout the year. Isle of Palms is located 15 miles by road east of downtown Charleston. According to the United States Census Bureau, the city of Isle of Palms has a total area of 5.4 square miles, of which 4.4 square miles is land, 1.0 square mile is water. The city of Isle of Palms is served by the Charleston International Airport.
It is about 12 mi northwest of Isle of Palms. It is the busiest passenger airport in South Carolina; the airport shares runways with the adjacent Charleston Air Force Base. Charleston Executive Airport is a smaller airport located in the John's Island section of the city of Charleston and is used by noncommercial aircraft. Both airports are operated by the Charleston County Aviation Authority; as of the census of 2010, there were 4,133 people residing in the city. The population density was 743.6 people per square mile. There were 4,274 housing units at an average density of 868.7 per square mile. The racial makeup of the city was 97.65% White, 1.06% Hispanic or Latino, 0.56% African American, 0.75% Asian, 0.15% Native American, 0.17% from other races, 0.73% from two or more races. There were 1,828 households, of which 20.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 62.4% were married couples living together, 6.4% had a female householder with no husband present, 28.8% were non-families.
20.9% of all households were made up of individuals and 7.5% had someone living alone, 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.26 and the average family size was 2.66. The city population was spread out with 17.0% under the age of 18, 3.2% from 18 to 24, 23.8% from 25 to 49, 31.8% from 50 to 64, 22.6% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 47. For every 100 females, there were 98 males; the median income for a household in the city was $76,170, the median income for a family was $88,874. Males had a median income of $60,640 versus $37,500 for females; the per capita income for the city was $44,221. About 1.7% of families and 3.4% of the population were below the poverty line, including 4.3% of those under age 18 and 1.0% of those age 65 or over. The city is run by an elected Mayor-council government system. Jimmy Carroll Randy Bell, Ryan L. Buckhannon, Jimmy Carroll, Ted Kinghorn, John Moye, Carol Rice, Susan Hill Smith, Jimmy Ward; the island's original inhabitants were the Sewee tribe.
During the Civil War, the H. L. Hunley departed between Isle of Palms and Sullivan's Island. In the late nineteenth century, local residents began using the island as a vacation spot. At that time it was only accessible by ferry, it was bought by J. S. Lawrence in 1899, who gave the island its current name. A 50-room hotel was built in 1906. In 1912, James Sottile had a beach pavilion and an amusement park built, a trolley line was constructed from Mount Pleasant on the mainland to Isle of Palms via Sullivan's Island. In 1929, Grace Memorial Bridge was built between Charleston and Mount Pleasant to allow automobile traffic to reach the island. Large-scale residential development began when J. C. Long built low-cost housing for World War II veterans. In 1975, the Sea Pines Company established the 900-acre development now known as the Wild Dunes Beach and Racquet Club. E. Lee Spence, a pioneer underwater archaeologist and prolific author of books and articles about shipwrecks and sunken treasure, with the help of Isle of Palms residents Wally Shaffer and George Campsen, many shipwrecks along the shores of the Isle of Palms in the 1960s.
Their discoveries included the Civil War blockade runners Rattlesnake, Stonewall Jackson, Mary Bowers, Constance and the Georgiana. The iron-hulled steamer Georgiana, sunk on her maiden voyage, was described in contemporary documents as pierced for 14 guns and more powerful than the famous Confederate cruiser Alabama; these historic discoveries resulted in the passage of South Carolina's Underwater Antiquities Act allowing the archaeological salvage of shipwrecks. During Hurricane Hugo, which struck September 21, 1989, much of the island was flooded by the storm surge; the northeastern end of the Isle of Palms, home to the private community of Wild Dunes, endured a severe erosion crisis as a shoal attached to that section of the island and caused sand to be washed away from around the foundation of a large condominium. The city undertook a controversial beach restoration project in the spring and summer of 2008 which replenished the beach with dredged sand and saved the threatened structures.
In February 2019, it was reported that the city's police force was undergoing a crisis following several resignations. The Charleston County Park and Recreation Commission operates numerous facilities within Charleston County including Isle of Palms County Park. Marinas and boat landings: Cooper River Marina Multiple county-wide boat
Winnsboro, South Carolina
Winnsboro is a town in Fairfield County, South Carolina, United States. The population was 3,550 at the 2010 census, it is the county seat of Fairfield County. Winnsboro is part of South Carolina Metropolitan Statistical Area. Based on archeological evidence, this area of the Piedmonth was occupied by various cultures of indigenous peoples from as early as the Archaic period, about 1500 BC. Blair Mound is a nearby archeological site and earthwork occupied 1300-1400 AD, as part of the late Mississippian culture in the region. Several years before the Revolutionary War, Richard Winn from Virginia moved to what is now Fairfield County in the upland or Piedmont area of South Carolina, his lands included the present site of Winnsboro. As early as 1777, the settlement was known as "Winnsborough", his brothers John and Minor Winn joined adding to family founders. The village was laid out and chartered in 1785 upon petition of Richard and John Winn, John Vanderhorst; the brothers Richard and Minor Winn all served in the Revolutionary War.
Richard became a general, was said to have fought in more battles than any Whig in South Carolina. John gained the rank of colonel. See Fairfield County, South Carolina, for more; the area was developed for the cultivation of short-staple cotton after Eli Whitney's invention of the cotton gin in 1793, which made processing of this type of cotton profitable. It was considered too labor-intensive. Short-staple cotton was cultivated on plantations in upland areas throughout the Deep South, through an interior area that became known as the Black Belt; the increased demand for slave labor resulted in the forced migration of more than one million African-American slaves into the area through sales in the domestic slave market. By the time of the Civil War, the county's population was majority black and majority slave. Textile mills were constructed in the area beginning in the late 19th century, only whites were allowed to work in the mills. "Winnsboro Cotton Mill Blues", an industrial folk song of the 1930s with lyrics typical of the blues, refers to working in a cotton mill in this city.
The song arose after the textile mill had been converted to a tire manufacturing plant, reflecting the widespread expansion of the auto industry. The song has been sung by Lead Belly, Pete Seeger, other artists, it was the basis of one of the ballads by modernist composer/pianist Frederic Rzewski in his Four North American Ballads for solo piano, completed in 1979. Places listed on the National Register of Historic Places for Winnsboro range from an Archaic period archeological site, to structures and districts spanning the European-American/African-American history of the city, as in the following list: Albion, Blair Mound, Dr. Walter Brice House and Office, Concord Presbyterian Church, Furman Institution Faculty Residence, Ketchin Building, Bob Lemmon House, Liberty Universalist Church and Feasterville Academy Historic District, McMeekin Rock Shelter, Mount Olivet Presbyterian Church, New Hope A. R. P. Church and Session House, Old Stone House and Rion Railroad Historic District, Rural Point, Shivar Springs Bottling Company Cisterns, The Oaks, White Oak Historic District, the Winnsboro Historic District.
In the late 19th century, after white Democrats regained control of state legislatures in the South, they passed Jim Crow laws establishing racial segregation of public facilities and disenfranchising blacks, excluding them from the political system. In 1960 in the United States Supreme Court decision of Boynton v. Virginia, the court ruled that racial segregation was unconstitutional in interstate bus stations, bathrooms and on buses, as these were covered by constitutional protections of free interstate commerce; the Civil Rights Movement had begun to use public demonstrations and events to build public awareness. In 1961, CORE decided to test the bus ruling by sending mixed racial groups of Freedom Riders to ride interstate buses and use facilities in the segregated southern United States to challenge practices related to segregation of buses and bus stations, they intended to end at New Orleans. They were met by increasing violence. Winnsboro was one of the cities where some Freedom Riders were beaten by local whites and arrested by local officials.
One was rescued by a local African-American man while outrunning a white mob. Winnsboro is located east of the center of Fairfield County at 34°22′37″N 81°5′17″W. U. S. Route 321 and South Carolina Highway 34 bypass the town on the west side. US 321 Business passes through the center of town on Congress Street. US 321 leads south 28 miles to Columbia. SC 34 leads west 36 miles to Newberry. SC 200 leads northeast 19 miles to Great Falls; the unincorporated community of Winnsboro Mills borders the south side of Winnsboro. According to the United States Census Bureau, the town of Winnsboro has a total area of 3.2 square miles, all land. As of the census of 2000, there were 3,564 people, 1,454 households, 984 families residing in the town; the population density was 1,109.6 people per square mile. There were 1,597 housing units at an average density of 492.4 per square mile. The racial makeup of the town was 40.29% White, 58.46% African American, 0.31% Asian, 0.33% from other races, 0.61% from two or more races.
Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.31% of the population. There were 1,454 households out of which 33.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 37.7% were married couples living together, 25.4% had a female householder with no
Seal of South Carolina
The Great Seal of the American State of South Carolina was adopted in 1776. The seal is made up of two elliptical areas, linked by branches of the palmetto tree; the image on the left is dominated by a tall palmetto tree and an oak tree and broken. This scene represents the battle fought on June 28, 1776, between defenders of the unfinished fort on Sullivan's Island, the British Fleet; the standing palmetto represents the victorious defenders, the fallen oak is the British Fleet. Banded together on the palmetto with the motto "Quis separabit?", are 12 spears that represent the first 12 states of the Union. Surrounding the image, at the top, is "South Carolina", below, is "Animis Opibusque Parati"; the other image on the seal depicts the Roman Goddess Spes walking along a shore, littered with weapons. The Goddess, symbolizing Hope, grasps a branch of laurel. Below her image is her name "Spes", Latin for "Hope", over the image is the motto "Dum Spiro Spero", or "While I Breathe I Hope"; the Great Seal of South Carolina was "set" or "affixed" to the Ordinance of Secession of December 20, 1860, at Secession Hall in Charleston shortly after 7:00 p.m. following which convention delegates signed it, including Robert Barnwell Rhett, as some three thousand South Carolinians watched enthusiastically the proclamation of South Carolina as "a separate, independent nationality."
Christopher Werner State of South Carolina Symbols of the state of South Carolina Flag of South Carolina The Great Seal of the State of South Carolina
Anderson, South Carolina
Anderson is a city in and the county seat of Anderson County, South Carolina, United States. The population was 26,686 at the 2010 census, the city was the center of an urbanized area of 75,702, it is one of the principal cities in the Greenville-Anderson--Mauldin Metropolitan Statistical Area, which had a population of 824,112 at the 2010 census. It is further included in the larger Greenville-Spartanburg-Anderson, South Carolina Combined Statistical Area, with a total population of 1,266,995, at the 2010 census. Anderson is 120 miles from Atlanta and 140 miles from Charlotte. Anderson is the smallest of the three primary cities that makes up the Upstate region and is nicknamed "The Electric City" and "The Friendliest City in South Carolina". Anderson's spirit and quality of life have earned national recognition as Anderson County was named an "All-America City" in 2000. Anderson is the home of Anderson University, a selective private comprehensive university of 3,400 undergraduate and graduate students.
Cherokee first settled the area of. During the American Revolution the Cherokee sided with the British. After the American Revolutionary War the Cherokee's land was acquired as war reparations and colonized. In 1791 the South Carolina legislature created the Washington District which comprised Greenville, Anderson and Pickens counties; the Washington District was divided into Greenville and Pendleton districts. Anderson and Oconee comprised the newly created Pendleton district. Anderson was settled in 1826 and incorporated in 1828 as Anderson Court House separating from the Pendleton district; the name Anderson is in honor of Robert Anderson who fought in the American Revolutionary War and explored the Anderson region in the mid-18th century. Anderson District was established in 1826 out of the Pendleton district. In 1851 the Johnson Female Seminary was established in Anderson as the first college of the town and was named after William Bullein Johnson. One year the seminary was renamed Johnson University.
During the American Civil War Johnson University was closed and converted into a Confederate treasury. On May 1, 1865 Union forces invaded Anderson looking for the Confederate treasury; the treasury office of Anderson was ransacked by Union forces and the main building of Johnson University was used as a Union headquarters. A minor skirmish erupted at the Battle of Anderson leading to two Union casualties. After the war a Union garrison was stationed in Anderson. Anderson became one of the first cities in the Southeastern United States to have electricity. Electricity to Anderson was established by William C. Whitner in 1895 at a hydroelectric plant on the Rocky River giving the city the name "The Electric City." Anderson became the first city in the world to supply a cotton gin by electricity. In 1895 Anderson Court House was renamed to Anderson. In 1897 Whitner's plant was upgraded with a 10,000 volt generating station at Portman Shoals. Whitner's power plant at Portman Shoals became the first hydroelectric plant in the United States to generate high voltage without step-up transformers.
The Portman Dam was swept away in 1901 forcing Anderson to be in darkness until it was rebuilt in 1902. In 1911 Anderson College was established by the Anderson Chamber of Commerce. Anderson College was a successor to the Johnson Female Seminary and is affiliated with the South Carolina Baptist Convention in particular the First Baptist Church of Anderson. Anderson College became a co-ed two year junior college in 1930 and in 2006 it became Anderson University. Anderson is located in the northwest corner of South Carolina on the Piedmont plateau. Anderson is a 1-hour drive from the Blue Ridge Mountains and a four-hour drive from the South Carolina coast. Anderson lies at the midpoint of the busy I-85 corridor between Atlanta and Charlotte, North Carolina. According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 14.6 square miles, of which 14.6 square miles is land and 0.039 square miles, or 0.30%, is water. Anderson College Historic District Anderson Downtown Historic District Anderson Historic District McDuffie Street Historic District South Boulevard Historic District Westside Historic District Whitner Street Historic DistrictOther historical locations Caldwell-Johnson-Morris Cottage Denver Downs Farmstead Kennedy Street School North Anderson Historic District Dr. Samuel Marshall Orr House Ralph John Ramer House Anderson Memorial Stadium — A ballfield/stadium on 12 acres of land on White Road.
Renovated in 2007 with stadium-style seating. Home to the Anderson University Trojans. Anderson Sports and Entertainment Center — A 300-acre area that includes the Anderson Civic Center, a 37,000 square feet facility, as well as one of South Carolina's largest amphitheaters that can accommodate 15,000 people, a huge castle-like play structure with play equipment, a 64-acre sports center with 7 baseball/softball fields, 3 soccer fields, disc golf course, 8 tennis courts. There is a lake with park, picnic shelters, miles of nature trail; the ASCE is Anderson's largest recreational area. Anderson's economy revolves around manufacturing. Anderson has over 230 manufacturers, including 22 international companies. In the county, Anderson has a thriving business climate; the top major industries in Anderson include manufacturers of automotive products, metal products, industrial machinery, plastics and textiles. Two industries that many times interconnect are automotive sectors. There are more than 27 BMW suppliers in the Upstate region, recognized internationally as an automotive suppl
High Hills of Santee
The High Hills of Santee, sometimes known as the High Hills of the Santee, is a long, narrow hilly region in the western part of Sumter County, South Carolina. It has been called "one of the state's most famous areas"; the High Hills of Santee region lies north of the Santee River and east of the Wateree River, one of the two rivers that join to form the Santee. It extends north to the Kershaw county line and northeasterly to include the former summer resort town of Bradford Springs. Since 1902 the town has been included in Lee County; the county was named after Thomas Sumter, who came from Virginia, married a local widow in 1767, with her became a successful plantation owner. He became noted as a general in the Revolution. After the war, Sumter represented South Carolina in the United States House of Representatives and the Senate; the High Hills of Santee name has been in use since the 18th century, when the area became a popular resort for wealthy planters. They built summer homes in the region to escape the oppressive "heat and malaria of the Lowcountry" during the summer sick season.
In the 18th and 19th centuries, the High Hills of Santee was the location of many cotton plantations, had a large population of enslaved Africans as laborers. Among the planter families were The Broughtons, The Dinkins and the Singletons, whose daughter Angelica married Abraham Van Buren eldest son of Martin Van Buren and served as First Lady of the United States after his election as a widower president following the second term of President Andrew Jackson; the South Carolina historian David Duncan Wallace placed the area in what he called the "red hill region" of the state. He wrote: "The High Hills of Santee paralleling the Wateree River on its east attain an mountainous appearance; the region contains much good land."The area includes three National Historic Landmarks, one National Historic District, several structures listed on the National Register of Historic Places. It has attractive outdoor recreational areas such as Poinsett State Park and Manchester State Forest. Despite the short distances to Columbia and Sumter, the High Hills of Santee are rural and isolated, as the area was in antebellum times.
Historic sites in the High Hills of Santee include three National Historic Landmarks: Borough House Plantation, Stateburg. Other places listed on the National Register of Historic Places include: Lenoir Store, Horatio, it includes two of the area's three National Historic Landmarks: Borough House Plantation and Church of the Holy Cross, within its boundaries, plus at least eight contributing properties, including: High Hills of Santee Baptist Church. Richard H. Anderson, Confederate general, was born at Borough House Plantation. J. J. Broughton, Five generations of Broughtons with extensive land holdings dating back to "Kings Grant" of Seven miles of property along the Santee. Farming, cattle and Broughton's Mill at Mill Creek. Plantation house located in Pinewood, SC destroyed by fire of 1937. Broughton Family funded in the 1920s the Presbytrian Church in Pinewood. Mary Boykin Chesnut, author of A Diary from Dixie, was born in Stateburg, the daughter of Stephen Decatur Miller and his wife, Mary Boykin.
Richard Furman, pioneering Baptist minister, first pastor of High Hills of the Santee Baptist Church. Furman University is named for him. John L. Manning, original owner of Millford Plantation and governor of South Carolina. Richard Irvine Manning III, Governor of South Carolina. Wyndham Meredith Manning, South Carolina politician and son of Richard Irvine Manning III, born in Wedgefield. Stephen Decatur Miller, owner of the plantation, Miller House known as Ellison House. S. senator. Thomas Sumter, early settler and general in the Revolution. Angelica Singleton Van Buren, First Lady of the United States; the High Hills of Santee had many notable plantations. Some of them survive; the Cedars and the Pines, Springhill Summer Home in Bradford Springs, owned by Capt. James Gaillard of Charleston. Orange Grove Bloomhill, Wedgefield. Places and present, in the High Hills of Santee, include: Bradford Springs, Claremont Dixie Crossing Foxville known as Camden Junction Garner's Ferry Brisbane's Ferry Simmons Ferry Hagood Sanders Station Horatio Louellen Manchester, Middleton Clarendon Depot Pinewood Clarendon Stark's Ferry Stateburg Stateborough Stateburg Station Wateree Juncti
Beaufort, South Carolina
Beaufort is a city in and the county seat of Beaufort County, South Carolina, United States. Chartered in 1711, it is the second-oldest city in South Carolina, behind Charleston; the city's population was 12,361 in the 2010 census. It is a primary city within the Hilton Head Island-Bluffton-Beaufort, SC Metropolitan Statistical Area. Beaufort is located on Port Royal Island, in the heart of the Sea Islands and South Carolina Lowcountry; the city is renowned for its scenic location and for maintaining a historic character by preservation of its antebellum architecture. The prominent role of Beaufort and the surrounding Sea Islands during the Reconstruction era after the U. S. Civil War is memorialized by the Reconstruction Era National Monument, established in 2017; the city is known for its military establishments, being located in close proximity to Parris Island and a U. S. naval hospital, in addition to being home of the Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort. The city has been featured in the New York Times, named "Best Small Southern Town" by Southern Living, a "Top 25 Small City Arts Destination" by American Style, a "Top 50 Adventure Town" by National Geographic Adventure.
Written history began 500 years ago with the discovery of the area by Spanish Captain Diego Guilarte de Salazar in 1514. Thus, Beaufort County was the site of the second landing on the North American continent by Europeans, in 1514; the first landing—Pedro Menéndez de Avilés at St. Augustine—was only a year earlier; the Lowcountry region had been subject to numerous European explorations and failed attempts at colonization before the British founded the city in 1711. The city grew subject to numerous attacks from Native American tribes and threats from the powerful Spanish Empire to the south, it flourished first as a center for shipbuilding and when the colony was established as a slave society, as the elite center for the Lowcountry planters through the Civil War. Several months after hostilities began between the states, Beaufort was occupied by Union forces following the Battle of Port Royal. Due in part to its early occupation, the city attracted escaping slaves; the Union declared the slaves emancipated and initiated efforts at education and preparation for full independence.
The Freedmen's Bureau worked with local blacks during Reconstruction. After the war, the city relied on phosphate mining before a devastating hurricane in 1893 and a fire in 1907 brought extensive destruction and economic turmoil, their effects slowed growth of the city for nearly half a century. In the latter half of the twentieth century, the community became a destination for tourists, it benefited by the growth of military installations in the area and related employment. Local groups have worked to preserve significant architecture. In addition to the Beaufort Historic District, The Anchorage, William Barnwell House, Barnwell-Gough House, Beaufort National Cemetery, John A. Cuthbert House, Fort Lyttelton Site, Hunting Island State Park Lighthouse, Laurel Bay Plantation, Seacoast Packing Company, Seaside Plantation, Robert Smalls House, Tabby Manse, John Mark Verdier House are listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Beaufort is located at 32°25′55″N 80°41′22″W; the majority of the city is situated upon Port Royal Island, an interior Sea Island that the city shares with neighboring Port Royal and unincorporated portions of Beaufort County.
The city has annexed lands across the Beaufort River on Lady's Island. The city is amid a marshy estuary, according to the United States Census Bureau has a total area of 33.6 square miles, of which 27.6 square miles is land and 6.0 square miles, or 17.80%, is water. Remnants of the original English colonial settlement of Beaufort can be found in the downtown or historic district area. 304 acres of the town have been designated a National Historic Landmark. With approximate dimensions, downtown is defined as anything upon the peninsula jutting into the Beaufort River, located east of Ribaut Road. Further defined, downtown is broken into five distinct historic neighborhoods: Downtown, The Point, The Bluff, The Old Commons, the Northwest Quadrant; as the city expanded in the 20th century, additional growth focused on undeveloped areas north and west of the historic district. Much of the growth can be attributed to the increased military influence during the 1940s and 1950s, in which Beaufort's population doubled as a result of new military personnel and families moving to the area.
These areas have since become integral parts of the city and today are home to the majority of the residents in the city. The Pigeon Point and Higginsonville neighborhoods are located north of Downtown Beaufort and are built around the Beaufort National Cemetery, they contain two major city parks: Pigeon Point Community Park and the Basil Green Recreation Complex. An area with smaller homes and one-story early 20th century structures, Pigeon Point has experienced a renewal of development interest, with many homes being "flipped" or renovated in recent years. Higginsonville is more similar in character to the Northwest Quadrant neighborhood and has its street names come from famous abolitionists during the Civil War era; the West End and Depot neighborhoods are located west of Ribaut Road, south of Boundary Street and north of the Technical College of the Lowcountry campus. These areas have been the focus of recent redevelopment efforts. Concentrated around the Beaufort rail station, the neighborhoods have similar charac