Greenville SC Historic Sites and Landmarks

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Guide to Greenville's Historic Landmarks

This guide to Greenville County's historic sites and landmarks includes schools, mills, markers, bridges, courthouses, forts, and more. SCIWAY also offers guides specific to Greenville historic churches, Greenville historic homes, and Greenville plantations.

The first section below is devoted to resources covering Greenville County historic landmarks as a whole. Additional sections are devoted to the unique historic landmarks of individual towns within Greenville County, South Carolina. In particular, these sections focus on Greenville historic sites, Fountain Inn historic sites, Gowensville historic sites, Greer historic sites, and Slater-Marietta historic sites.

Greenville County Historic Sites & Landmarks

Greenville Historic Sites & Landmarks

  • Beck High School
    During its five short years of operation (1965-1970), this school served the African-American students of Nicholtown, Allen, Backer's Chapel, Roosevelt, and Fieldcrest areas of Greenville.

  • Conestee Mill
    As early as the 1790s, a mill was operating in the area along the Reedy River that would be later be called Conestee, the Cherokee word for "running waters."

  • Falls Park
    This popular Greenville attraction was the site where early settler Richard Pearis built his grist mill in 1768 and is also home to the famed Medusa Tree.

  • Old Dunham Bridge
    Built in 1929, the Old Dunham Bridge is a steel truss bridge which stretches over the Saluda River near present-day SC 81. It was once part of the main route from Downtown Greenville to Anderson and remained in use until the 1990s.

  • Old Greenville County Courthouse
    The old Greenville County Courthouse is the only example of Beaux Arts architecture in Greenville County. It was built in 1918 and served as the county's main courthouse until 1950.

  • Parker High School | More Info | More Info
    In 1923, A high school was very much needed to educate children from seven mill villages on the west side of Greenville, SC. Open from 1923-1985, Parker High School earned recognition in the Top Ten High Schools Scholastically in America on five separate occasions. In 1971, Parker became racially integrated school focused on building racial harmony within its walls. The Parker High School Auditorium was placed on the National Register of Historic places in 2000.

  • Paris Mountain
    Paris Mountain State Park was established in the 1930s by the Civilian Conservation Corps. The land was originally used by the Greenville Water System as the site of its first reservoir built in 1890.

  • Sterling High School
    Formed in 1896, Sterling High School was originally known as Greenville Academy and operated in a Church until the population grew too large. It was the first public high school for African Americans in the county. The school burned down in 1967 and was moved to temporary housing until 1970 when it closed its doors permanently due to integration.

  • Washington High School
    Originally known as "Happy Hearts" elementary and high school, this school was only open for eight years -- 1962-1970.

  • Welcome High School | More Info
    Situated in the small Welcome community, the original school building began as a modest 2-room school in 1909 but, sadly, no longer stands and there is no picture of it to this day. In 1946, Welcome High School was the third largest school in Greenville. Presently, the building is being used as Welcome Elementary School.

  • Westville High School
    Open from 1925-1952, this school served as a high school. From 1952-1966, it was transformed into an elementary school.

  • Antebellum sites, buildings - 1790s-1860
    Brief descriptions of 17 antebellum sites in Greenville

  • Post-bellum sites, buildings - 1865-1900
    A quick look at 11 post-bellum sites in Greenville

Fountain Inn Historic Sites & Landmarks

Fountain Inn is located in both Greenville County and Laurens County.
  • Bryson High School
    Combining five small schools into one, Bryson opened its doors in 1954, being one of only four school serving solely African American students in the county. When integration occurred in 1970, Greenville County schools were the first to be desegregated and Bryson closed its doors.

  • Cedar Falls Park
    This beautiful park features the remains of an early nineteenth-century mill along its banks.

  • Fountain Inn Colored High School
    Between 1917 and 1932, over 5,000 schools were built in the rural South to educate African-American children known as Rosenwald schools. This particular school was built in 1928, serving the African American youth of the Fountain Inn community. As population increased, buildings were added, eventually becoming known as Fountain Inn Colored High School from 1948-1953.

  • Fountain Inn High School | More Info
    Constructed in 1939 in the New Deal-era Modern design, Fountain Inn High School is now listed in the National Register of Historic Places.

Gowensville Historic Sites & Landmarks

Greer Historic Sites & Landmarks

Greer straddles the boundary line of Greenville County and Spartanburg County. It began in 1873 when the Atlanta Charlotte Air Line Railroad established a stop called Greer Station. A bustling business district quickly grew up around the depot, and in 1901, two new railroads, Southern Railways and Piedmont and Northern, constructed competing rail lines through the town. Commercial activity eventually became centered between these two tracks, which both provided merchants with easy access to transportation.

Greer thrived as a transportation and business center. Initially Greer's trains moved South Carolina's peaches and cotton to markets throughout the Southeast. In the early 20th century, the trains transported raw materials and finished goods for hundreds of textile mills in the nearby South Carolina Upstate.

  • Gilreath's Mill
    Possibly built as early as 1814, this historic landmark has also been known as Bruce's Mill, Heller's Mill, and Taylor's Mill over the years.

  • Greer Depot
    Of the three train depots that formerly occupied Greer, this is the only one still standing. It was built in 1913 by the Piedmont & Northern Railroad.

  • Greer Opry House
    Located downtown, the Greer Opry House was founded by the late Ernest Harvey after a fire destroyed the nearby Powdersville Opry House; it continues to be owned and operated by his family today.

  • Greer Station
    Greer Station was Greer's name prior to 1826, and it was the focal point of business, commerce, and entertainment for the community up until the 1960s. Today it is being revitalized.

  • Pelham Mill
    This mill holds the distinction of being the oldest in Greenville County. This 144-spindle cotton mill operated along the Enoree River.

  • Suber's Corn Mill
    Owned by the same family since 1908, the corn that is ground here produces cornmeal, grits, and animal feed.

Piedmont Historic Sites & Landmarks

The Town of Piedmont sits on the border between Anderson County and Greenville County. Native Americans used the area as a river crossing because its rock formations jutted into the Saluda River. After the Civil War, Henry Pinckey Hammett also found the riverside to be an ideal location – for a cotton mill.

As early as the 1880s he used hydro-electrical power to run the machinery in his textile mills. From the 1920s until Duke Power expanded into the region after WWII, a water plant on the river also supplied electricity to Piedmont homes.

Pelzer Historic Sites & Landmarks

  • Ellen Woodside High School
    John T. Woodside, son of Ellen Woodside, donated five acres and half the cost to pay for the original school building. The original two-story school, built in 1925, was destroyed in the 1940's and a new one-story school was built in its place. By 1966, Ellen Woodside students were combined with Piedmont High students to make up the new Woodmont High School and the building became the site of the community elementary school.

Simpsonville Historic Sites & Landmarks

  • Bryson High School
    Combining five small schools into one, Bryson opened its doors in 1954, being one of only four school serving solely African American students in the county. When integration occurred in 1970, Greenville County schools were the first to be desegregated and Bryson closed its doors.

  • Simpsonville High School
    Serving students from 1885-1957, Simponville High School was the first school in the county to offer programs in agriculture and music education.

Slater-Marietta Historic Sites & Landmarks

  • Slater Hall
    This large, three-story building is situated on 3.83 acres near the center of the Slater-Marietta area; it was built by H.N. Slater, founder of Slater Mills.

  • Slater-Marietta High School
    Located between Marietta and the Slater Plant, this high school operated from 1951 until 1973 and pulled students from Table Rock, Caesar's Head, Cleveland, Marietta, Slater, and Shiloh.

Taylors Historic Sites & Landmarks

  • Lincoln High School
    Located in Taylors, SC, this African-American school was open from 1955 through 1970, serving students grades 1 through 12. It was closed after Greenville County Schools were integrated.

  • Paris High School
    Opening its doors in 1926, Paris High School was located on the grounds of a former U.S. Army Base campground named Camp Sevier located within the Mountain Creek community of today. The school remained open until 1960.

  • Taylors High School
    In 1880, a one room schoolhouse was moved from Chick Springs to Taylors, SC. In 1917, a new school opened and it served all aged students until 1960, when it served only elementary aged students.


                       
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