Caesar’s Head – Cleveland, South Carolina
South Carolina | SC Picture Project | Greenville County Photos | Caesar’s Head
Caesar’s Head State Park, located in Greenville County, provides gorgeous views of the Blue Ridge Escarpment. It features campgrounds and hiking trails, and it’s also just a hop, skip, and jump away from both Jones Gap Falls and Symmes Chapel (Pretty Place).
Caesar’s Head was established as a state park in 1979 and became part of the Mountain Bridge Wilderness Area in 1996. Its most famous spot can be found at its southern edge, where a large, isolated granite rock protrudes over an expansive valley. The giant rock formed approximately 409 million years ago and stands 3,266 feet above sea level.
The land originally belonged to the Cherokee Indians, but it was relinquished to the state in 1816. In the mid-1800s, Colonel Benjamin Hagood purchased 500 acres and built a hotel here. A highway was constructed out to Caesar’s Head, and a small summertime community sprang up around the hotel. Though it burned down during the Civil War, the community and history continue to live on. Read more about the history of the Caesar’s Head Hotel.
There are many legends as to how Caesar’s Head got its name, but these three are the most popular. One highlights a hunter and his dog, Caesar, the latter of whom fell from the cliff in pursuit of their prey. The distraught owner then named the cliff after his faithful dog. Another says Caesar is a crude adaptation of sachem, the Cherokee word for Indian chief. The final and perhaps simplest theory is that the rock resembles Julius Caesar’s profile.
As mentioned above, Ceasar’s Head is viewable from Pretty Place in Camp Greenville. As Jeff Hammond, who took the photo at the top of this page, notes, “I took this picture just before sunrise at Pretty Place Chapel, which is inside Camp Greenville in Cleveland, SC. It was my first time to ever visit this chapel and the beauty of this place truly left me speechless. It reminded me of the perfect morning. It was taken in May of 2013 around 6:15 AM.”
Caesar’s Head Info
Address: 8155 Geer Highway, Cleveland, SC 29635
Caesar’s Head Map
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The purpose of the South Carolina Picture Project is to celebrate the beauty of the Palmetto State and create a permanent digital repository for our cultural landmarks and natural landscapes. We invite you to add additional pictures (paintings, photos, etc) of Caesar’s Head, and we also invite you to add info, history, stories, and travel tips. Together, we hope to build one of the best and most loved SC resources in the world!