Preparing a Report on South Carolina?

Or simply interested in some facts? Here's a quick primer on the Palmetto State.

State Capital: Columbia

Motto: Dum Spiro Spero (While I breathe, I hope)

Nickname: The Palmetto State

Admitted to the Union: May 23, 1788 – the 8th State

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

Population: About 4.6 million – according to the 2010 Census

South Carolina Borders: Atlantic Ocean, Georgia, North Carolina

Longest River: Savannah River – 238 miles

Oldest College: College of Charleston, est. 1770

Counties: 46 counties

State Parks: 47 state parks

Largest Counties by Area:

  • Horry County – 1,133 square miles
  • Orangeburg County – 1,105 square miles
  • Berkeley County – 1,099 square miles

Smallest County by Area: McCormick County

Largest County by Population (2010 Census):

  • Greenville County – 451,225
  • Richland County – 384,504
  • Charleston County – 350,209

Smallest County by Population (2010 Census): McCormick County 10,233

Top Agricultural Crops:

  • Broilers
  • Turkeys
  • Corn

Visitor Spending From Tourists: $10.1 billion (2014 estimate)

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.

For more information:

Did You Know?

Key Moments in South Carolina History

Historical Firsts

Famous South Carolinians

Palmetto Pals, South Carolina ETV internet resource for teachers and students