Historical Sites

Aeolian Hill


Aeolian Hill, main house of the plantation of the Reverend John Jacob Wannamaker, is located about two miles east of St. Matthews on the Creston-Elloree Road (Highway 6).  The stately home was built by John Edward Wannamaker (1851-1935) on lands inherited from his father, the Reverend John Jacob Wannamaker.  Reverend Wannamaker was one of the signers of The Ordinance of Secession, and is buried in the family plot of Aeolian Hill.

During John Edward Wannamaker’s youth, Aeolian Plantation, where he was to settle and build his family home, had a comfortable overseer’s house.  It was in this house that Mr. Wannamaker lived alone for a time in order to manage the plantation’s large operations.  He came there in 1872 following his graduation from Wofford College.  Because of the strong winds that swept the place, Wannamaker named the place Aeolian Hill.  He razed the overseer’s house to build a one-story dwelling about 1875. To this home he brought his bride, the former Martha Nelson Duncan of Spartanburg, in January 1878.  Twenty-two years later (1900) John E. Wannamaker enlarged the house and added a second story.  Bruce and Morgan, architects of Atlanta, Georgia (also the architects of Clemson College) drew the plans for the addition. Mr. Wannamaker took pride in having taken all the measurements used by Bruce and Morgan in the remodeling plans.  Dr. John E. Wannamaker was named in Thomas Clemson’s will as a lifetime trustee of Clemson.  His biography appears in Men of Mark.

This stately home and her rich fields were to continue to be the setting of significant events, for it was at Aeolian Hill that the Clemson-Nonshatter soybean was developed by Dr. John E. Wannamaker II.  Dr. Wannamaker, II was born October 1888 at Aeolian Hill Plantation where he lived his entire life.  After his graduation from Wofford College in 1910, he began farming on an extensive scale.  His accomplishment in the breeding of soybeans and cotton has been widely recognized.  His work in this field has had a marked influence on the agricultural economy of the South.  He died at his home on November 24, 1965.


William Baker – Franck House


William Baker’s “Manor House” was built around 1830 in the style of Greek Revival.  The lovely house features a full-length piazza and gabled second-story portico.  The interior displays exacting workmanship of the period. Built high on a hill, the house lends one a commanding view of the city of Columbia.

This is at least the second house to be built on this site.  The first house was occupied by William Baker II (1753-1839) and his wife, Barbara Likes Baker.  It was here on Thursday, December 7, 1815, that the Bakers extended their hospitality to the Bishop Francis Asbury.

The builder of the present house is believed to be William Baker III, a shoemaker by trade. Baker III, who married Mary Mueller on March 1, 1832, inherited this tract from his father’s estate, who had, in turn, inherited it from his father (William Baker I, who died 1759).

The Baker Plantation was vast and composed of lands granted to William Baker I, beginning in 1735, also from the lands of ; William York; John Myrick; a town lot in Saxe-Gotha; and John Jacob Geiger. By 1790, William Baker owned eight slaves.

The house and property remained in the family until after the War Between the States when it became the property of the Wolfe and Franck families.


Colonel James Arthur Banks House – Dantzler Street, St. Matthews, SC

This impressive home, located within the town limits of St. Matthews, was built by Colonel James Arthur Banks, Sr. about 1893.  Probably in 1909, the large Corinthian columns and the small straight columns were added.  They were designed with Ionic capitals and supported a decorated frieze, both examples of Classic Revival architecture.

Colonel Banks was the second Senator of Calhoun County.  He was also President of the Home Bank, President of the State Fair Association, Chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee when he served as a member of the SC House of Representatives from Orangeburg County, and Mayor of the town of St Matthews.


Battle of Fort Motte – May 11, 1781

Battle-of-Fort-Motte-May-11-1781This British garrison consisted of field works around a large mansion house belonging to Mrs. Rebecca Motte.  Opposite the garrison, to the north, stood another hill where Mrs. Motte resided in a farmhouse.  On this height, Colonel Lee took post with his troops while Marion occupied the eastern declivity of the ridge.  The large mansion located in the center, left but a few yards uncovered.  Marion and Lee decided to set fire to the building in the fort and force surrender.  Mrs. Motte was informed of the intended action and not only assented, but declared that she was “gratified with the opportunity of contributing to the good of her country and would view the approaching scene with delight.” She obtained bows and arrows, which are reported to have been given to her brother, Miles Brewton, by the captain of an East Indian man-o-war. Mrs. Motte then gave permission for General Lee’s men to make fire-arrows and thus fire her own home.  The British sent a party to the loft of the house to knock off the burning shingles, but the continentals raked the loft from one end to the other and drove the soldiers down.  The gallant British officers were sent off to Lord Rawdon, who had retreated from Camden and reached a position opposite Fort Motte, and encamped on the highest ground there. The other British troops were placed under security as prisoners.


Battle of Thomson’s Plantation – February 23, 1781

On February 19, 1781, General Thomas Sumter attacked Fort Granby on the Congaree, the British stockade below Columbia.  On February 21, he advanced to the British Post at Colonel Thomson’s Plantation, near present-day Fort Motte.  The American troops advanced through an open field under heavy fire, reaching a part of the British defenses and setting fire to the houses.  The defenders succeeded in extinguishing the flames and resisted every assault.  The attack was then abandoned, but the investment was continued.  Sumter encamped at Manigault’s Ferry, two miles below Thomson’s, refreshing part of his troops while a strong detachment maintained the investment of the post.  He had sent out several smaller detachments for various purposes so that he had with him not more than a hundred men.  Early on the morning of the 23rd, he received information that the enemy was approaching with a considerable number of troops and several wagons.  He formed quickly for their reception on a well-chosen piece of ground half a mile below his encampment.

The British, about eighty in number, advanced in a compact line on open ground.  The British were outflanked and defeated in a short, decisive battle.  Twenty wagons with clothing, supplies, and arms were taken; thirteen British were killed and sixty-six taken prisoner.  Sumter had collected and secured all boats at Fort Granby and also at Thomson’s.  The Santee was out of its banks and the wagons could not cross, so the captured goods were placed on board the captured boats and sent down the river to a point where Sumter was to meet them with his troops.  On the 24th of February, Lord Rawdon appeared for the relief of the post at Thomson’s.  Sumter retreated when he saw that Rawdon’s entire army was with him and hastened to meet the boats, where he proposed to cross the river.  By treachery of the pilot, the boats were permitted to drop below the proposed landing point and within range of the guns at an enemy post at Wright’s Bluff.  The boats and their goods fell into enemy hands, but the guards escaped and rejoined Sumter.  The Americans gathered as many canoes as possible, and on February 27, attacked the post at Wright’s Bluff to regain the stores.  The Americans received tremendous fire and had to give way with considerable loss.  The British claimed eighteen killed and prisoners and many horses taken.


Bellebroughton Plantation (Bell Broughton)

In the area which encompasses Calhoun County, a series of magnificent plantations was established during the Colonial Period.  Each plantation, organized as a self-contained unit, had an elegant main house.  A classic example is Bellebroughton Plantation, established by the Broughton family, located outside the town limits of Creston near the Santee River.

It was already established as Bellebroughton Plantation in 1735, for when James LaBass, Esquire warranted for 200 acres in Amelia, his tract was located “halfway between Foquet and Sabb, known as Bellebroughton Plantation.”

When William Sabb of Amelia Township wrote his will in 1765, he referred to five tracts, “joining Bellebroughton’s tract.”  Later, the tract became the property of the Sabb family.

The main house burned.  Today, the site yields examples of eighteenth and nineteenth century china, and Native American pottery is also found in the area.

William Sabb’s daughter, Elizabeth, was born at Bellebroughton on June 27, 1761.  In 1887, R. E. Edwards of Creston purchased the property.


Belleville Plantation & Cemetery

Colonel William Thomson married Eugenia Russell, daughter of Charles Russell, in 1755.  They acquired 400 acres of land on Buckhead Creek on which Belleville Plantation was developed. Belleville was the first outstanding producer of indigo.  During the Revolutionary War, the plantation was seized by the British and fortified.  A battle took place when General Thomas Sumter and his troops attacked.

In 1783, Thomson laid out a proposed town here, which lacked only a few votes of being selected state capital of South Carolina.  Cotton was planted as a commercial crop at Belleville in 1794, two years before Gaillard planted it at his plantation, The Rocks.

The old cemetery dates back to the Revolutionary War period.  Remains of an earth embankment can still be seen around this site.  The graves belong to the family of Colonel William Thomson, hero of the American Revolution.


Cain – Duensing House – Church St., St. Matthews, SC

William Pinckney Cain (August 3, 1843-October 2, 1895) built the house in St. Matthews about 1872 with unusual architecture.  Cain married Adella Clark, who taught pupils at home.  All the Cain children were born in the house.  George Wannamaker, who died in 1921, also lived in the house with his wife, Lillie Bates Wannamaker.


Calhoun County Courthouse – Railroad Ave., St. Matthews, SC


On Thursday, May 29, 1913, there was a public celebration during which the laying of the cornerstone of the “new courthouse” for Calhoun County took place.  The architect was W. A. Edwards, and the contractor W. R. Rose.

The site of the Court House and jail was donated, “without cost to the county,” by F. J. Buyck and M. Jarecky.  According to Merritt’s Historical Sketch of the Formation and Operation of Calhoun County filed with Clerk of Court Muller on June 23, 1933, the Court House was erected for less than $20,000.  However, the truly unique feature of the construction of the Calhoun County Court House is that not one cent of its cost came from public funds.

On May 10, 1958, during the celebration of the 45th anniversary of the laying of the Court House cornerstone, a South Carolina historical marker was dedicated.


Cave Hall

Cave HallCave Hall is located in an unusual beauty spot upon which a series of caves is located in the Southeast Basin of South Carolina referred to as the Lower Pine Belt or Savannah Region.  The area is a part of the Santee Marls, which form the lowest member of the calcerous strata of the Charleston Basin.  It falls in the Pleiocene and Post-Pleiocene Periods.

Cave Hall, also called Wright’s Bluff, is on the Santee River; the waters of Halfway Swamp and Bull Bluff Creek.  It traverses Clarendon County to its northwest corner and was granted to the Honorable Chief Justice Robert Wright in 1735 and comprised 2,000 acres.  It was sold by Wright’s estate in 1755 to Moses Thomson.  Thomson sold 1,400 acres of the tract (keeping 600 acres) called Cave Branch which ran next to the river.  It was on this tract that Moses Thomson established his Cave Hall plantation.  His grandson, William Russell Thomson either inherited or bought the place.  William Russell Thomson, son of Colonel and Mrs. William Thomson, was born April 22, 1761 and died in 1807.

Not a great deal is known of Moses Thomson, who bought Cave Hall.  However, the prominent life of William Russell is well documented.  Moses’ son, Colonel Thomson, established Belleville, which helps to explain why the grandson settled Cave Hall.

William Russell Thomson was an officer of the American Revolution; Justice of the Peace for Orangeburgh District, 1785; Manager of Election for St. Matthews Parish, 1786; elected to South Carolina House of Representatives, St. Matthews Parish, 1790; appointed Ordinary of Orangeburgh District by the Legislature, October, 1791; elected Sheriff of Orangeburgh District by Legislature, December, 1794; and was an unsuccessful candidate for State Senator in 1800.

As a young man of seventeen years, William Russell Thomson was captured by the British and held captive at Belleville along with his father.  Colonel Thomson was removed to Charleston where he was held prisoner in the Provost Custom House while young Thomson continued to be held prisoner at Belleville.  William Russell Thomson married Elizabeth Sabb, who was born at Bellebroughton June 27, 1761, and died at Totness on November 8, 1838.  Apparently, after the death of William Russell, Cave Hall was no longer a Thomson residence, since Elizabeth Sabb Thomson left there sometime after his death.

We do not know the location of the house site—a site which would prove to be one of the earliest in the country.


The Clark House – Railroad Ave., St. Matthews, SC

Calhoun County Library - Railroad Ave., St. Matthews, SC

The Clark House was built in 1866.  It is one of the oldest buildings in the county seat of St. Matthews and was constructed in the Greek Revival style.  It has a colonial-type façade which includes four pillars or columns.  There is a spoked, half-wheel window in the front portico and a fan-shaped window over the front door with side lights.  The building has not been significantly altered since its construction.  The chimneys on the outside have never been blocked and remain as they were over a hundred years ago.




Cherokee Path

Cherokee PathPart of an old Indian Path which ran from Charleston to the Congaree, from the Congaree to Ninety-Six, and then from Ninety-Six to Keowee and Cherokee Indian Country.  This old Indian path became the most noted route to the Cherokee Country and eventually became the chief highway of the province and state.  The part in Calhoun County led near Sandy Run Lutheran Church and Haig’s Hill and down to the “Russells” near “Amelia,” which would be near where today state secondary road #43 crosses Halfway Swamp Creek.






James A. Dantzler House

James A. Dantzler HouseThis old antebellum mansion built in 1854-1857 has been long unoccupied.  One room, the large high-ceiling parlor, is being restored to its former beauty.  Dantzler family papers dating back to the 1840s and kitchen utensils that belonged to Captain Dantzler’s uncle, David Houser of Houser’s Stagecoach Inn, were exhibited in another room in 1970.





Dantzler-Crutchfield House

Dantzler - Crutchfield House - East Bridge Street, St. Matthews, SCThis dwelling was built about 1850 by Jacob M. Dantzler or his son Colonel Olin M. Dantzler.  It has the distinction of being the oldest house in St. Matthews.






Fort Motte Town Site

Fort Motte Town SiteThere was a village here in 1850; however, surrounding the town is a series of large plantations dating to the colonial period.  In 1875, Fort Motte was incorporated and by 1907, was a flourishing town with a post office, stores, and two banks.  Today, only a remnant remains of a thriving economy.  The town jail has a cornerstone listing the town officers of 1907.





Gillon’s Retreat

Gillon's RetreatCommodore Alexander Gillon settled on the Congaree River near Totness in St. Matthews, Orangeburgh District in 1787.  He named his home “Gillon’s Retreat” and spent a great deal of time and money embellishing the house with taste and elegance.  The garden, planned with the aid of his wife’s father, the Reverend Henry Purcell of Charleston, was equal in beauty to the house.  The mansion was constructed along the same lines of most architecture of the period.  The building was raised high off the ground with the bottom section being used as a kitchen and the upper section as living quarters.  The upper part of the house had a wide piazza; a large hall ran from the piazza into all the inside of the house, and the bedrooms opened into the hall.  There were tall, white columns on both the upper and lower sections of the house.  The columns were not ornate, but rather demonstrated the simple beauty of the Greek revival which was taking place in architecture of that time.

Before moving to this area, Commodore Gillon served as the first Commodore of the South Carolina Navy and commanded the frigate South Carolina.  A wealthy mercantile shipper/trader in Charleston, he organized the Charleston Chamber of Commerce, serving as its first president.  Mr. Gillon served in all phases of public life including Congressman from the Second District.

Gillon died at “Gillon’s Retreat” in 1794 and was buried on the property.  When he died, he still owed money from the losses he incurred during his term as Commodore of the South Carolina Navy.  One of his creditors’ sons obtained judgment and sold “Gillon’s Retreat.”  The creditor’s son, a Buyck of Amsterdam, bought into the property and the plantation remained in the hands of the Buycks for generations after.  The mansion was destroyed by fire, probably during the Civil War.


Haig’s Hill

The Cherokee Path passed near here.  It was named after George Haig, and Indian trader and Deputy Surveyor General.  Haig surveyed many of the early land grants in the area in the early 1730s and 1740s.  He was killed by an Iroquois raiding party in 1748.  It was George Haig who surveyed on December 10, 1741, a grant of land made to Mrs. Mary Russell (wife of Charles Russell), to be held in trust for her children.


Heatly Hall Cemetery

A monument erected here by Ann Heatly Reid Lovell has inscriptions from the following people:  her father, Captain William Heatly; her mother, Mary Elizabeth Heatly; her grandmother, her infant son, her brothers and sisters, and others.  The site must date back to the late 1700s.


Hennon-Zimmerman House

Hennon - Zimmerman House - St. Matthews, SCBuilt by Squire W.A. Hennon in 1855, the home is similar in architecture to Olin M. Dantzler’s summer house.  Squire Hennon was the first large merchant of St. Matthews.  In the 1880s, the house was reoriented to have a second story (facing Church Street) using Victorian decoration.  The second story had two rooms facing Church Street.  In the early 1900s, R.D. Zimmerman purchased the property from the Cain Family.  Mr. Zimmerman hired Architect Johansin, who squared off the upstairs and made the front of the house to face Railroad Avenue using Greek Revival and the massive, handsome columns of today.  The door facings appear to be original to 1855; the doors are new.  Also, the window facings appear to be original.  The remodeling was completed prior to 1908.



David-Houser Stagecoach Inn

David Houser Stagecoach InnBegun in 1824 and finished in 1829 by David Houser, the structure served as a tavern and horse-changing station in stagecoach days.  An antebellum dutch oven and smokehouse are in the yard.






Jericho Methodist Church

The slave gallery and the partition once separating the men and women were removed from this structure in 1890.  With this exception, the building remains much as it was before the Civil War.  A previous meeting house had been erected here on land obtained from Jacob Felkel.


Lang Syne

Lang Syne

The dwelling is located on land which was developed into a thriving plantation by Ann Heatly Reid Lovell, daughter of Captain William Heatly, and her nephew Langdon Cheves.  Cheves was a member of the United States House of Representatives in 1810, and President of the Bank of the United States of America.  The presently existing white framed house at Lang Syne was built in 1901.  It has a fine entrance with elliptical fanlight.  The simple portico has four square columns and a fan lighted pediment.  The gable roof is made of green tile.  The house was formerly the home of writer Louisa Cheves McCord, daughter of Langdon, and also Julia Peterkin, Pulitzer Prize winner.



McCord’s Ferry Site

When John McCord bought the site from John Joyner in 1766, a public ferry came into operation.  McCord’s wife, Sophianisba Russell McCord, was a daughter of Captain Charles Russell.  Sophianisba, left at the ferry with her son during the Revolution, instigated and participated in the many troubles that beset the British on their ferry crossings.



MidwayThis home was named by its builder, Colonel William Russell Thomson, for its location.  The site was “midway” between Bellbroughton, his mother’s plantation, and Belleville, his boyhood home.  The original home, built about 1780, is now the rear of the structure.  The front section was added in the 1850s when the house was remodeled.  At that time, fourteen rooms were removed from the original home and materials salvaged from the alterations were sufficient to build two other homes.





OaklandAn on-site examination in April 1972 by the Spartanburg County Historical Association informed “Miss” Nell Reid, then resident of Oakland, that the plantation house was built prior to the Revolutionary War, sometime between 1750 and 1770.  Research and investigation of details in the cellar and the attic, the “unfinished” or “uncovered” areas of the house, hold strong indications of the dates given above in addition to architectural features on the interiors and exteriors on all floors.  Documents and family tradition bear out these dates.  The large pillars supporting the house are constructed of brick made in the old kiln on the property.  The sills are hand-hewn, unbled pine, at least 18 inches wide and extend the length and breadth of the house without piecing.  The piazza once extended along the sides.  Inside, the rooms have solid pine-board wainscoting about two feet wide.



Edward Monts Rast Home

Edward Monts Rast HomeBuilt in the Greek Revival style, this house was constructed circa 1850.  In the 1950s, Mr. and Mrs. Rast moved the home, which at the time was mostly dilapidated, a quarter-mile and built under it an old brick first floor featuring a large, livable family room.  The house has unique double windows and great high ceilings.






Raysor-Weeks Home; East Bridge Street, St. Matthews

Raysor - Weeks Home - East Bridge Street, St. MatthewsBuilt by the Raysor Family about 1904-1910, it was remodeled with Ionic columns after 1910.







 The Red Store

The Red StoreThe Red Store was built by Herman Geiger around 1820.  The portion used as a dwelling was the first part to be built.  The front rooms were used as a dry goods and grocery store.  The long wing was built in 1821 and used to store heavy groceries and other supplies.  F.W. Muller added a second story about 1846.




 Rich House

Rich HousePossibly an antebellum home built of hand-hewn timbers, it was originally a store house or a blacksmith shop.  Philip Rich purchased and remodeled the house in 1879.






 Sandy Run Lutheran Church

Sandy Run Lutheran ChurchThe first house of worship was built about three miles north of the present location of Sandy Run Church on the west bank of the Congaree River, near the mouth of the Sandy Run Creek.  The settlers soon found that they could not live so near the river and moved inland.  They then built their second church building near the present site on Old State Road.  The third building constructed was at the same location on land that is now used for the cemetery.  This third building had a balcony for slaves.  For a number of years it was used as a “Union Church.”  The cemetery contains the dust of the Reverend Christian Theus, who preached in this area until his death in 1789.

During the War Between the States, the ladies met in this old church to sew for the soldiers.  In 1889, this building was remodeled and the balcony was removed.  In 1917, it was destroyed by fire during a church service.  The pastor, the Reverend Robert Elford Livingston, calmly picked up the Pulpit Bible, which was later used until 1945, and walked out of the church after the members.  The congregation saved the pews, the organ, and the communion set.  Sunday services and Sunday School were held in the parsonage until the present church was completed.  The first service was held in 1918 in the present church and was the funeral of its pastor, the Reverend R.E. Livingston.  The church was dedicated June 30, 1919.

The Reverend E.F.K. Roof was the only minister who came from this old historic church.  He was the son of E.J. Roof, who was the Superintendent of the Sandy Run Sunday School for more than forty years.  The Reverend Roof graduated from Newberry College in 1910, and the Southern Lutheran Theological Seminary in 1914.  He served pastorates in Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, West Virginia, and was serving the Silver Valley Parish in Lexington, NC when he passed away on October 24, 1954.

The Geigers, present members of the Sandy Run Lutheran Church, are descendants of Jacob Geiger who settled in this section in 1737.  The present individual communion set was the gift in 1944 of the late Percy L. Geiger.  This replaced the communion service which was the gift of Henry Muller, Sr., and which was purchased in Germany about 167 years ago.  During the Confederate War, this Communion Service was buried for safekeeping, and later dug up and placed in use, almost in perfect condition, and may be seen at the Calhoun County Museum.


Sandy Grove Methodist Church

Shady Grove Methodist ChurchLand on which this church stands was granted to Conrad Holman in 1740 by King George II.  The oldest section was built in the early 1800s with hand-hewn log framing pegged together with wooden pegs.  The structure has been remodeled three times.  It is presently a white frame building with bell tower and steeple.  The historical marker here was unveiled June 7, 1970.





St. Matthews Parish Episcopal Church

St. Matthews Parish Episcopal ChurchThe parish was established in 1765-1768.  The present structure was built in 1851-1852; its style is Gothic with Greek Revival influence.  In 1800, the church site was moved from the public road from Charleston to Columbia near Halfway Swamp, and again in 1815 to a two-acre plot of land given by Andrew Heatly.  The present building is the fourth church building used by the congregation.  A communion service presented to the church by Mrs. Ann Heatly Reid Lovell in 1819 is still in use, as is a chalice given by Tacitus Gaillard in 1777.





George Sterling Site

George Sterling SiteGeorge Sterling, explorer and Indian trader, received a 570 acre land grant in March of 1704 and settled here when Santee and Congaree Indians were living along banks of the river.  Sterling’s daughter, Mary, married Richard Heatly in 1714 and moved here about 1717.  Their son, William, born in 1718, was thought to be the first European child born in the area.  After Heatly’s death in the early 1720s, Captain Charles Russell married the widow Mary Sterling Heatly, and by 1725 they were living on a part of the original land grant, then owed by William.  This land was sold to Russell in 1731.

Captain Russell had served as Commandant of “Fort Congaree” near the present town of Cayce from 1718 until the end of its operation in 1722.  He and Mary Sterling Russell built their home on the Cherokee Path near Amelia.  Appointed to the offices of Justice of the Peace and Captain of the Rangers, in 1734 Russell was also appointed by Governor Johnson as agent for the three townships of Amelia, Saxe-Gotha, and Orangeburg.  When he died in 1737, he was serving as Agent to the Cherokees.  The Russell home was a stopping place for Indians using the Cherokee Path.  Later, Mrs. Russell was among the residents of the area who permitted the Reverend John Giessendanner to hold services in their homes.  A chapel was built nearby in 1757 and services were held there.


Tabernacle Church Burning Ground

Tabernacle Church Burying GroundThis is the site of Whetstone’s Meeting House in the early 1800s and later Tabernacle Methodist Church.  Among those buried here are Confederate War hero Colonel Olin Miller Dantzler and the daughters of Governor John Adam Treutlen, first patriot governor of Georgia, 1777.







Totness Town Site

In St. Matthew’s Parish, Orangeburg District, was Totness.  Totness was a small but, “much frequented,” summer watering place on the north side of High Hill Creek, about three miles from the Congaree River and twenty miles from Orangeburg Court House.  The Totness Academical Association was chartered in 1833.  In 1850, the village was incorporated, its limits marked by a circle with a radius of a half mile from the village church.  Mrs. L.A. Taveau of Charleston and her daughters, Mrs. Thomas Waring and Mrs. William Haskell, stopped at Totness on the way to the Up Country in 1838 and 1839.  In 1865 the town was burned by Union soldiers.


John Adam Treutlen Marker

Located at the intersection of Old State Road and Belleville Road, this historical marker was erected to John Adam Treutlen.  While visiting some of his lands here, Treutlen was murdered by the Tories near Mett’s Crossroads in 1782.  Treutlen was a member of the first Provincial Congress and was elected the first governor of Georgia in 1777.


Ulmer-Summers House

Ulmer-Summers HouseBuilt by John Jacob Ulmer on a grant dated 1804 on the Santee River, the house was inherited by his son, George Jacob, who moved it to its present location in 1836.  It has been in the Summers family for four generations.  It was remodeled over a period of three years, 1966-1969, and restored.  The original “dog trot,” which once ran wide open to carry the cool breezes through the house, was enclosed.  It is painted in authentic period paint and the stair entrance of old brick and wood is an authentic reproduction.




Whetstone House

Whetstone HouseThis house was built by the Whetstone family in 1854 and has been used as a family residence ever since.  It was built high off the ground, typical of the period, and has wide piazzas on the first and second floors.  The house also features square columns and a double entrance.





Edward Wimberly House; Dantzler Street, St. Matthews, SC

Edward Wimberly House - Dantzler Street, St. Matthews, SCThe Wimberly House is a handsome residence built about 1907, shortly before the death of its builder Edward Wimberly.  It is styled in the Columbian Exposition class architecture (1893, Chicago).  This style is later referred to as Southern Colonial.

Mr. Wimberly married Mary Elizabeth Banks on February 24, 1893, and went into business with J.A. Banks.  He was reputed to be an excellent businessman.   The store founded as Banks-Wimberly was one of the most prosperous in the area.  Mr. Wimberly contracted pneumonia while stumping for the organization of Calhoun County.  He died in 1907.

The beautifully kept Wimberly House is one of the outstanding landmarks within the town limits of St. Matthews, and it represents an excellent example of Southern Colonial Architecture.



ZanteThis three-storied dwelling was built before the Revolution near the Santee River and was moved about 1806.  It features a large single dormer centered on the roof.  The front entrance is very attractive with a fan-shaped window over the door and diamond-patterned side windows.  The interior wood trim is handsomely worked.  A dual stairway leads to the rear porch.