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"N" is for New Ellenton

South Carolina From A to Z
SC Public Radio

"N" is for New Ellenton [Aiken County; population 2,250]. Initially called North Ellenton prior to its incorporation, New Ellenton was an offspring of the Cold War and considered by many locals to have been "the first victim of the H-bomb." Incorporated in 1952, the town was the reincarnation of the town of Ellenton—a depot on the Port Royal Railroad. Gradually the little community became a thriving farm market town whose quiet existence ended when the US Atomic Energy Commission announced it was going to build a massive nuclear weapons facility in Aiken and Barnwell Counties—the Savannah River Site. All residents were forced to leave their homes and a number of them moved to a two hundred acre development near the main entrance to the "bomb plant" that became the town of New Ellenton.

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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.