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"U" is for Union

South Carolina From A to Z
SC Public Radio

"U" is for Union (Union County; 2010 population 8,351). Although European settlers arrived in the 1750s, it was not until the General Assembly created Union County in 1785 that the town began to take shape. The little settlement around the courthouse—initially referred to as Unionville--was incorporated in 1837 as Union. A Robert Mills-designed courthouse and jail were built in 1823. In the 1890s, Union began the transition from farming town to industrial city. The first textile mill was built in 1893. Others followed over the next decade and the town’s population tripled. Union’s rapid growth had stalled by 1910. Little expansion of the downtown area occurred in the twentieth century and Main Street continued to look much as it had in the nineteenth century. Today, Union’s historic downtown has become a cherished asset.

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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.