Looking for help with homework about South Carolina?
- State Capital: Columbia
- Motto: Dum Spiro Spero (While I breathe, I hope)
- Nickname: The Palmetto State
- Population: Approximately 5.1 million (2020 Census)
- Number of Counties: 46
- Largest County by Population (2020 Census): Greenville (525,534), Richland (416,147) and Charleston (408,235)
- Smallest County by Population (2020 Census): Allendale 8,039
- Number of State Parks: 47 state parks
- Admitted to the Union: May 23, 1788 – the 8th State
- Top Agricultural Crops: Broilers, turkeys and corn
- How South Carolina got its name: King Charles I of England granted the land on which South Carolina is located to Sir Robert Heath in 1629. The region was named Carolus, a word derived from the Latin form of Charles, in reference to King Charles. His son, King Charles II, changed the spelling of the region’s name to Carolina in 1663, when he gave the land to the eight Lords Proprietors. During the 17th century the land to the south, in this grant, came to be called South Carolina and the area to the north, North Carolina. The two sections remained a single colony until they separated in 1710. The name of the land located to the south remained South Carolina.
- Land Area: 31,113 square miles – ranked 40th
- Coastline: 187 miles of coastline
- Highest Point: Sassafras Mountain – 3,560 feet above sea level
- Lowest Point: Sea level on the coastline
- Highest Waterfall: Raven Cliff Falls – 400 feet
- Borders: Atlantic Ocean, Georgia, North Carolina
- Longest River: Savannah River – 238 miles
- Largest Counties by Area: Horry (1,133 square miles), Orangeburg (1,105 square miles) and Berkeley (1,099 square miles)
- Smallest County by Area: McCormick County (359 square miles)
Key Moments in South Carolina History
Early European Settlements
- In 1566, the colony of Santa Elena was established in South Carolina by the Spanish.
- The eight Lord Proprietors who were given the Carolinas by King Charles II succeeded in establishing the first permanent European settlement in the state of South Carolina. The first English settlement was established in South Carolina in 1670 at Albemarle Point on the Ashley River.
- South Carolinians were leaders in the resistance to the Stamp Act.
- Over 200 battles and skirmishes of the Revolutionary War were fought in South Carolina.
- The first decisive victory of the Revolutionary War involving land and naval forces was won at Fort Moultrie, near Charleston.
- The battles of Kings Mountain and Cowpens are considered by many historians to be the turning points in the Revolution.
- On May 23, 1788, South Carolina became the eighth state to ratify the Constitution.
- On December 20, 1860, in Charleston, South Carolina became the first state to pass the Ordinance of Secession and secede from the Union.
- The first shots of the Civil War were fired at Fort Sumter in the Charleston Harbor on April 12, 1861.
For more information:
- Did You Know?
- Historical Firsts
- Famous South Carolinians
- KnowItAll.org, an SCETV resource for teachers and students