South Carolina (State)

State of South Carolina
Coordinates 34°NB, 81°WL
Surface 82.965 km²
(6,0% water)
Residents 4.679.230
(60 inhabitants/km²)
Capital city Columbia
Governor Henry McMaster (R)
Time zone Eastern Standard Time (UTC−5)
Joined 23 mei 1788
Nickname Palmetto State

South Carolina (Dutch: Zuid-Carolina) is one of the states of the United States. The standard abbreviation for the “Palmetto State”, as its nickname goes, is SC. The capital is Columbia.


The area now called South Carolina was originally settled by indigenous tribes such as the Cherokee and the Catawba. The Spaniards were the first Europeans to visit the area. In 1521 they explored the area around Winyah Bay (in present -day Georgetown County). In 1540, the conquistador Hernando de Soto passed through the area. In 1562, a group of French Huguenots, fleeing the Huguenot Wars, settled on Parris Island but their settlement was French Floridawas abandoned a year later.

Colonial History

The state’s colonial history begins in 1621, when King Charles I of England founded the Province of Carolina, an area south of the previously established Colony of Virginia and roughly encompassing the present-day states of North Carolina, Tennessee, and South Carolina. He divided the area among eight Lord proprietors who were granted a royal charter. Anthony Ashley Cooper (one of them) would play a big part in organizing this colony. The colony was given the name Carolina which is a Latinization of the name Karel.

After 1670, farmers from Barbados began to settle along the coast and founded the city of Charles Town which was moved around 1680 and would be called Charleston. This city would play a major role in the trade of slaves to North America. In 1719 the colony became a crown colony and in 1729 it was split into North and South Carolina.

Independence struggle

South Carolina was one of the Thirteen Colonies that revolted against English rule in the late 18th century, during the American Revolution. South Carolina was the first to declare its independence from the British. In 1776, they passed their own constitution and Charleston was sworn in their first president, John Rutledge. That same year, the city of Charleston repelled an attack by a British fleet from a fortress built of palmetto logs on an island off the harbor. On May 23, 1788South Carolina officially became the 8th state of the United States. During the war of independence, the state suffered a lot. About a third of all fighting took place in this state.


The imposing facade of the Millford Plantation, built around 1840.

After independence, the population increased rapidly. Cotton became the main agricultural product and this required large quantities of slaves. The state became rich, but with a very skewed distribution of that wealth. In order to vote, people had to meet certain requirements, either own a certain minimum amount of land and slaves, or know a certain amount of wealth. The so-called plantocracy. In 1790 Columbia became the capital, which was later connected to the port of Charleston by the Santee Canal.

In 1832, the Nullification Crisis, a revolt against taxes on goods traded from the south to the northern states, took place. The Tariff of Abominations. These were imposed mainly to protect the farmers in the north but were considered unfair by the southern states. In South Carolina in particular, resistance was strong because the economic damage was also greatest here and a law was passed declaring these taxes illegal. The army was called in to still impose these taxes.

American Civil War

Fort Sumter after being taken by Confederate troops. The flag of the Confederacy is raised.

South Carolina, home to a relatively large number of slaves, sided with the Confederacy during the American Civil War. It was the first state to secede on December 20, 1860. Fort Sumter saw the first fighting of that war in April 1861. In 1864, the first-ever submarine attack (the CSS Hunley) occurred off the coast of Charleston in a Confederate attempt to breach a Blockade. The attack succeeds, but the Hunley itself also sank after the attack.


According to JIBIN123.COM, the state of South Carolina covers 82,965 km², of which 78,051 km² is land. It is in the Eastern time zone.

Located on the Atlantic Ocean, South Carolina borders the state of North Carolina to the north and Georgia to the west.

The main river is the Savannah, which forms much of the border with Georgia and flows into the ocean at the state’s town of the same name. Off the coast are numerous small islands. The largest lakes in the state are Lake Marion, Lake Moultrie, Lake Murray, Hartwell Lake, Russell Lake, and Clarks Hill Lake.

The northwest of the state is the most hilly, with the top of Sassafras Mountain (1085 m) being the highest point.

Demography and Economics

South Carolina had 4,012,012 inhabitants (48 per km²), of which about 55% of the population lives in an urban area. The largest cities are capital Columbia, Spartanburg, Greenville and Charleston.

The gross product of the state in 2001 was $115 billion.


The state is nicknamed Palmetto State because the Palmetto palm played a role in the defense of Charleston during the American Revolutionary War. On an island off the city’s harbour, the insurgents built a fortress made of Palmetto logs, and this wood proved so resistant to cannonballs that they could drive out an entire British fleet from there. Since then, this tree has been the symbol of the state and appears on the flag and seal. It has been the state tree since 1939.

In 1786, the United States’ first golf course was opened in Charleston.

Musicians like Chubby Checker, Dizzy Gillespie and James Brown were born in the state. The Charleston dance may not have originated in the state, but it was named after one of its cities.

On the offshore islands, the Sea islands, a creole language called Gullah is spoken.

Administrative division

According to COUNTRYAAH, South Carolina is divided into 46 counties.

County Inhabitants
1 July, 2007
County Seat Inhabitants
1 July, 2007
Abbeville 25.457 Abbeville 5564
Aiken 152.307 Aiken 29.218
Allendale 10.475 Allendale 3706
Anderson 179.981 Anderson 26.404
Bamberg 15.452 Bamberg 3463
Barnwell 22.975 Barnwell 4801
Beaufort 147.316 Beaufort 11.868
Berkeley 163.622 Moncks Corner 6889
Calhoun 14.777 St. Matthews 1981
Charleston 342.973 Charleston 110.015
Cherokee 54.015 Gaffney 12.945
Chester 32.531 Chester 6040
Chesterfield 42.761 Chesterfield 1314
Clarendon 32.822 Manning 3947
Colleton 38.903 Walterboro 5739
Darlington 66.833 Darlington 6627
Dillon 30.694 Dillon 6338
Dorchester 123.505 St. George 2104
Edgefield 25.435 Edgefield 4415
Fairfield 23.333 Winnsboro 3564
Florence 131.886 Florence 31.431
Georgetown 60.499 Georgetown 8524
Greenville 428.243 Greenville 58.754
Greenwood 68.259 Greenwood 22.383
Hampton 21.210 Hampton 2773
Horry 249.925 Conway 14.989
Jasper 21.953 Ridgeland 2630
Kershaw 58.168 Camden 7029
Lancaster 73.393 Lancaster 9715
Laurens 69.582 Laurens 9728
Lee 19.988 Bishopville 3890
Lexington 243.270 Lexington 14.995
Marion 33.905 Marion 6810
Marlboro 28.819 Bennettsville 8923
McCormick 10.098 McCormick 2675
Newberry 37.633 Newberry 10.893
Oconee 70.753 Walhalla 3647
Orangeburg 89.952 Orangeburg 12.756
Pickens 116.003 Pickens 3010
Richland 357.734 Columbia 124.818
Saluda 18.748 Saluda 2935
Spartanburg 275.534 Spartanburg 38.843
Sumter 103.943 Sumter 38.782
Union 27.770 Union 8083
Williamsburg 35.447 Kingstree 3281
York 208.827 York 7735


South Carolina State House in Columbia.

The executive branch of the state is headed by a governor, who is directly elected by the voters in the state. In 2011, Nikki Haley of the Republican Party became the first woman to be elected governor of the state of South Carolina. She stepped down in January 2017 to become US Ambassador to the United Nations. She was succeeded by vice governor and party colleague Henry McMaster, who will finish her term.

The legislature is made up of the South Carolina House of Representatives (South Carolina House of Representatives) with 124 members and the South Carolina Senate (South Carolina Senate) with 46 members.

Flag of South Carolina