Liberty Hill – Liberty Hill, South Carolina
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The community of Liberty Hill in Kershaw County was established around 1813 when local farmers would congregate in merchant Peter Garlick’s store. It is believed that the town’s name is derived from settlers establishing a community here following the Revolutionary War, thus enjoying their liberty, though the name’s origins are unknown. In the following years, grand plantation homes were built, and antebellum Liberty Hill was among the wealthiest communities in the state. After the Civil War, the area fell into economic ruin until the early twentieth century.
Though Garlick’s store no longer exists, other stores, such as the R.J. Wardlaw Store seen here, popped up in its place in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century.
The store, along with many of the area’s historic buildings, are still intact and are listed in the National Register as part of the Liberty Hill Historic District:
A small rural community located on a high plateau, Liberty Hill visually and historically reflects both the life-style and the architecture of the pre-Civil War period as well as the turn of the twentieth century. There are several imposing Greek Revival structures, Greek Revival cottages, and an 1880s vernacular Gothic Revival church. The later, turn of the century residences are primarily one-stop, simple clapboard cottages.
The town’s history begins as early as ca. 1813 when Peter Garlick’s store (location unknown) was a gathering place for surrounding farmers. Soon, impressive structures were built by planters in the area. Remaining from the 1830s are Cool Spring and the Joseph Cunningham House. The majority of the town’s antebellum buildings, however, were built ca. 1840-1850. During this period Liberty Hill was a very wealthy community. However, the final days of the Civil War ended that prosperity. Nevertheless, the town did eventually reassert itself and appears to have changed very little since the beginning of the twentieth century.
Liberty Hill Info
Address: South Carolina Highway 97, Liberty Hill, SC 29074
GPS Coordinates: 34.472708,-80.804031
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