Trinity Episcopal Church – Society Hill, South Carolina
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Trinity Episcopal Church in Society Hill was organized in 1833, and this building was constructed the following year. Not only was Trinity the first Episcopal church in Darlington County, which was founded by Welsh Baptists, but it is the oldest church building of any denomination remaining in the county.
Trinity continued to be the only Episcopal church in the Baptist-dominated area until 1859 when another Episcopal church formed near Mars Bluff. There were not enough Episcopalians in the area to support both churches, and Trinity ceased weekly services in 1929, becoming officially inactive in 1931. Though the church no longer holds weekly services, it opens its doors each April for an annual service.
The church is now privately maintained. The clapboard sanctuary boasts a rare and fully-restored tracker organ crafted by William B.D. Simmons of Boston. Installed on October 18, 1873, the organ, which must be manually pumped, cost $1,250.
Trinity Episcopal Church is listed in the National Register as part of the Welsh Neck-Long Bluff-Society Hill District, which notes the following:
The Welsh Neck-Long Bluff-Society Hill area is one rich in historic significance. The Welsh Neck community was an early religious center (a ca. 1738 Baptist church was established here) for the Pee Dee region, and Long Bluff served as a judicial center. The courthouse at Long Bluff, with its jail, tavern, and supporting buildings, was a center of activity for the Upper Pee Dee region during the Revolution. Few small communities have contributed more to the public in the way of culture, education and leadership than has Society Hill. It has numbered among its population outstanding leaders in religion and education, jurists, statesmen, soldiers, authors, and agriculturists.
The Society Hill Library Society was formed in 1822. This group grew out of the St. David’s Society, founded 1777 in Cheraw, which had a wide-spread influence and was a main factor in making Society Hill a center of intelligent leadership in the Pee Dee for a century and a half. This is a rural community with many fine antebellum homes in the Georgian mode. Constructed on large lots or in wooden settings, many are two-storied clapboard structures with one-story front verandas. Nineteenth century mercantile establishments still operate in unadorned frame buildings of a purely functional design. Within the entire district there are approximately 250 structures. Welsh Neck and Long Bluff, both now unoccupied wooded areas, are considered excellent potential archaeological sites.
Trinity Episcopal Church Info
Address: 159 Burn Street, Society Hill, SC 29593
Trinity Episcopal Church Map
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