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“S” is for St. James Santee Parish

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“S” is for St. James Santee Parish. The parish of St. James Santee was established in 1706, and included the northeastern portions of modern Berkeley and Charleston Counties. It was one of the original ten parishes created under the Church Act of 1706. Among the earliest settlers in the 1680s were Huguenots who were attracted to South Carolina by the promise of religious and political freedom. For decades the rector of the parish was required to be able to preach and speak in both English and French. Early experiments with silk, grapes, and olives were unsuccessful, but in the eighteenth century rice and indigo “poured streams of wealth into the pockets of the French planters.” With the abolition of the parish system in 1865, St. James Santee Parish became a part of Berkeley County.

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Dr. Walter Edgar has two programs on South Carolina Public Radio: Walter Edgar's Journal, and South Carolina from A to Z. Dr. Edgar received his B.A. degree from Davidson College in 1965 and his Ph.D. from the University of South Carolina in 1969. After two years in the army (including a tour of duty in Vietnam), he returned to USC as a post-doctoral fellow of the National Archives, assigned to the Papers of Henry Laurens.