Category: History

DARLINGTON COUNTY RESPONSE TO DECLARATION OF WAR

DECLARATION OF WAR Congress was growing more frustrated with the way the Administration was handling the economic turmoil and its failure to use economic sanctions to receive concessions from the British. A faction within Congress called the War Hawks became even more outspoken in…

SPIES & CON MEN

ENTER THE SPY John Henry (1776 Dublin-1853 Paris(?)) immigrated to the United States in 1796. He edited a newspaper, managed a wine business in Philadelphia, ran a farm in Vermont, studied law, and gave speeches and wrote articles for the Federalist cause. He was…

DIPLOMATIC ROLLER-COASTER

ENTER THE DIPLOMATS     David Montagu Erskine was born in England in 1776 and died in England on March 19, 1855. His father was Thomas Erskine, the Lord High Chancellor of England. He was educated at Eton and Cambridge. In 1799 he married…

THE CHESAPEAKE & LEANDER INCIDENT

DESERTERS, ORDERS, AND DISASTER The incident between the USN Chesapeake and the HMS Leopard was set in play by the desertion of four men. William Ware, Daniel Martin, and John Strachan, three Americans who had been pressed into service by the British Navy, and…

JOHN PIERCE’S DEATH

APRIL 25, 1806 Three British warships parked in U.S. territorial waters around Sandy Hook, New Jersey outside New York. They searched every vessel entering the harbor for what they determined to be contraband and illegal commerce. The HMS Leander, captained by Henry Whitby, attempted to…

THE WAR OF 1812

INTRODUCTION The War of 1812. This event is often overlooked completely or given a cursory glance by the public and in the educational setting. Yet it was a pivotal moment in United States history that effected the entire country. But what was the war…

Historian Elected to the University South Caroliniana Society

The Historical Commission is pleased to announce that Brian Gandy, Director of the Commission and County Historian has been elected to serve on the University South Caroliniana Society’s Executive Council! Brian is excited to represent the Darlington County Historical Commission through this new opportunity….

The Jamison Photo Exhibit

THE PHOTOGRAPHIC CAREER OF JOHN A. JAMISON In 1935, I opened a small ill-equipped photographic studio, during the pit of the Depression, on the Public Square above the then Deluxe Café, where the smell of frying eggs and stale grease lent very little attraction…

TODAY IN DARLINGTON COUNTY HISTORY: Coker College opens

The trustees of Welsh Neck High School converted their institution into a non-sectarian Baptist college. It opened September 30, 1908, as “Coker College for Women,” founded by James L. Coker. Baptist control ended in 1944, and in 1969, the college became co-educational. The Governor’s…

Spotlight On: William Cain, educator

Born in Pinopolis, South Carolina, William “Bill” Cain graduated from the University of South Carolina, where he later received a master’s degree in education. He came to Darlington in 1934 when he began his teaching career at St. John’s High School, where, later, he…

Spotlight On: Stephen Presley

Father Stephen Presley was born a slave in 1820. He was owned by Boykin Witherspoon, a prominent planter from Society Hill. Presley was a carpenter by trade. He married another slave by the name of Phyllis McIver Presley. Welsh Neck Baptist Church records indicate…

Spotlight On: Colonel Lamuel Benton

Col. Benton (1754-1818) served as Colonel of the Cheraw Militia during the Revolutionary War, was a member of the South Carolina Legislature, Sheriff of Cheraws District, and a member of Congress (1793-1799). He is said to be buried in an unmarked grave on the…