Berkeley County, S.C. (WCBD) – It’s Wednesday and that means it is time to explore the history that surrounds the Lowcountry. This week, we head to Berkeley County.
Located on Old State Road in Berkeley County, a historical marker explains that the county was designated a court and land conveyance district in 1682, and an election district in 1683. It holds the honor of being one of the state’s first three counties.
Erected by The Berkeley County Historical Society in 1976, the marker says that the county was named for two brothers, Lord John and Sir William Berkeley. Both were Lord Proprietors of Carolina meaning they had the authority to issue a royal charter establishing an English colony and government.
Over the centuries, Berkeley County’s boundary lines changed more than once. It wasn’t until the late 1800s that the County’s current boundary lines were determined.
“Berkeley was created in 1882. Several boundary changes occurred 1893-1921.”-The Historical Marker Database
According to the South Carolina Encyclopedia, the Berkeley County region was one of the agricultural centers of colonial America. “English and French Huguenot planters developed thriving rice and indigo culture along the Cooper and Santee Rivers. As early as the late 1670’s, English colonists from Barbados settled in the Goose Creek area, which became the home of the politically powerful “Goose Creek Men.” Immense rice fortunes were made on some of the richest agricultural lands in the American colonies.”
Today, Berkeley County is known for its rich history. The Revolutionary War alone served as the setting for 32 of the war’s 166 battle sites and produced two prominent military leaders: General Francis Marion and General William Moultrie.
A passage from Berkeley County’s website reads, “In the past decade, Berkeley County has continued to build on its rich history and promise through smart and focused growth, both residentially and commercially. Still being penned, the story of Berkeley County is both distinctive and bright and one both current and future generations alike can take pride in.”