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“J” is for Jasper County

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“J” is for Jasper County (656 square miles; 2020 population 24,777). Jasper County was formed by the legislature in 1912, from portions of Beaufort and Hampton Counties—an area that contained much of the old low country parishes of St. Luke’s and St. Peter’s. The southernmost country in the state, Jasper is bound by the Savannah River on the southwest, Hampton County on the north, and Beaufort County on the east. The county was named in honor of Revolutionary War hero, Sergeant William Jasper. Rice was the area’s most important cash crop, produced by the labor of thousands of enslaved African Americans. The future county was the site of considerable military action during the Civil War. In the twenty-first century much of the land in Jasper County is devoted to recreational hunting and the production of pulpwood.

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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.