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“J” is for Jamestown

South Carolina A to Z larger logo

“J” is for Jamestown. Jamestown was the first Huguenot settlement on the Santee River in what became Berkeley County, across the river form the Georgetown/Williamsburg county line. Huguenots settled the Santee region soon after 1672, when the Lords Proprietors resolved to create a colony, or square, of twelve thousand acres at Jamestown. The first church of St. James Santee was built before the village was laid out. By 1699 the church had 111 members and was the largest church outside Charleston, Jamestown was laid out from 1705 to 1706 with thirty-six lots centered on the church and cemetery. As with most early settlements, there were few permanent residents. Because the settlement was so close to the river, it was subject to frequent and severe flooding. Jamestown was abandoned in the mid-1700s, and no visible traces remain.

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.