Genealogists to host event at Redcliffe Plantation exploring the history of slavery in Aiken County

June 21, 2022

Aiken, S.C. – Redcliffe Plantation State Historic Site in Beech Island invites the public to a special program, Slavery and War in Aiken County through the Reconstruction Era and Beyond, on Saturday, July 23 at 10 a.m.

The program will be led by award-winning author Dr. Walter Curry and genealogists Wayne O’Bryant and Jerome Gaines. The event will have a strong focus on the local area, and presentation topics will include slavery, the Civil War, and Reconstruction Era events that took place when Aiken County was founded and beyond.

Event details:

  • Date and time: July 23 from 10 a.m. - 12 p.m.
  • Location: The Visitor Center at Redcliffe Plantation State Historic Site, 181 Redcliffe Rd, Beech Island, SC 29842
  • Cost: $10
  • Registration is required and closes on July 21: call 803-827-1473 or email to register
  • Plan ahead: Dress for the weather and wear walking shoes. The structures do not have air conditioning. Light refreshments will be provided. Attendees are encouraged to bring water.
  • For more information: Contact Ashley Rust, Park Interpreter, at 803-827-1473 or

Dr. Walter Curry is a native of Orangeburg who received the 2019 African American Historical and Genealogical Society Book Award (Non-Fiction Category-Genealogy). After the presentation, he will be available to sign copies of his books The Thompson Family: Untold Stories from the Past and The Awakening: The Seawright-Ellison Family Saga, Vol.1, A Narrative History, which are available for purchase in the Redcliffe gift shop and at


About Redcliffe Plantation State Historic Site: Completed in 1859, Redcliffe was once the home of South Carolina governor and senator, James Henry Hammond, three generations of his descendants, and numerous African-American families like the Henleys, Goodwins, and Wigfalls who worked at the site as enslaved laborers and later as free men and women. Now one of the many historic plantations South Carolina has opened to the public, this site encompasses Hammond’s ambition, wealth, and power, as well as the injustices and suffering of the hundreds of enslaved peoples who were forced to live and work on the land. Tours of the historic slave quarters and mansion are offered Thursday – Monday at 11 a.m., 1 p.m., and 3 p.m. Redcliffe was named one of the Top Ten Sites to Visit in South Carolina by the South Carolina African American Heritage Commission. For more information about Redcliffe and other South Carolina State Parks visit

Need more information?   Sam Queen
Director of Corporate Communications
SC Department of Parks, Recreation & Tourism
1205 Pendleton Street, Columbia, SC 29201
| 803-734-1779
For travel, tourism and leisure news, visit