Overview of Eras and Time Periods

Northeastern South Carolina History Trail Era and Time Period Overview.

This overview presents a brief synopsis of how the listed eras and time periods relate to the important and colorful history of the Northeastern South Carolina region from before its early inhabitants to the modern day.

Click on any of the period titles to view the site entries it contains.


Prehistoric Era

Eons past, South Carolina was the home of giant camels, mastodons, saber-tooth tigers and, earlier, even some species of dinosaurs.

American Indian Culture

Native American cultures flourished in pre-Columbian South Carolina. When the first English colonists settled in the Colony of Carolina, they encountered dozens of Indian tribes with distinctive cultures and languages.

Colonial South Carolina

Established near modern Charleston in 1670, the English Colony of South Carolina was established during the reign King Charles II, and was divided into North and South Carolina in 1729.

Revolutionary War

During the Revolutionary War, South Carolina recorded more battles and skirmishes than any other state, and the fighting in the Palmetto State proved decisive to American victory and nationhood.

Early National Period

The delegates from South Carolina were instrumental in the crafting of the U.S. Constitution, and South Carolina was the eighth state to ratify the founding document. In the opening decades of the 19th century, South Carolina was prosperous and politically influential.

Old South

In the Antebellum Era of American History, most South Carolinians were traditional Southern farmers, although the state was also home to numerous rice and cotton plantations - and one of the largest slave populations in the United States.

Civil War

The Civil War began in South Carolina, when Confederate forces bombarded Fort Sumter in April of 1861. Numerous military operations occurred in the state, including Sherman's March - which left Columbia and much of the Palmetto State in runs.

Late 1800s

As a reunited America recovered from the Civil War and pursued the Industrial Revolution, South Carolina endured Reconstruction and then slowly progressed toward the 20th century, still affected by an economy destroyed by war.

Early 20th Century

In the first half of the 20th century, South Carolina sent many of its sons to faraway France in World War I. Back home, a boll weevil infestation ruined cotton farming for many families, causing a wave of out-migration, followed by the Great Depression.

World War II

During the Second World War, while numerous South Carolinians served in distant theaters of the war, while a multitude of military bases was established in the Palmetto State from the coast to the Upcountry.

Recent History

Modern South Carolina remained a leading agricultural state, but also became a major Southern business region with a thriving textile industry, and emerged as a national center of tourism.

State Seal of South Carolina
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