Colonial Dorchester State Historic Site, Summerville

(4.2/5 based on 110+ reviews on the web)
Colonial Dorchester State Historic Site sits along the Ashley River, near the town of Summerville in Dorchester County, South Carolina. In 1969, the site was donated to the South Carolina State Park Service and was added to the National Register of Historic Places on December 2, 1969. Currently the site of a 325-acre park, Old Dorchester State Park offers visitors a glimpse into South Carolina's Colonial past. The park boasts one of the most well-preserved oyster-shell tabby forts in the country, St. George's Bell Tower, log shipping wharves, burial sites and cemeteries, as well as on-going archaeological digs that are still unearthing the settlement's history.HistoryThe historic site is situated on the Ashley River where the town of Dorchester once stood. The site of the town of Dorchester is on a neck of land between the Ashley River and a creek, originally known as Boshoe Creek.FoundingIn 1675, John and Mary Smith came to Carolina from England. On November 20, 1676 the Earl of Shaftsbury granted 1,800 acres of land to John Smith, which included the future Dorchester site. John Smith's land grant was situated on Boshoe Creek, in Boshoe Swamp; subsequently, he became known as "John Smith of Boo-shoo." In December 1682, John Smith died and his widow married Arthur Middleton, and when he died in 1684, she married Ralph Izard. Because John Smith had no children, his land grant lapsed after he died and ownership of the land went to the state.
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  • Interesting morning walk. Very nice grounds. Good historic information. Nice views of the upper Ashley River. You can reasonably spend an hour or so taking in the history. Nice for a small historic si...  more »
  • If you have visited historic Johnstown on the James River near Williamsburg, Virginia, you'll enjoy a visit to the Colonial Dorchester State Historic Site in Summerville, South Carolina, on the Ashley...  more »
  • Great place for a picnic. Bring a chair or enjoy the picnic area. Sit beside the Ashley River. Small area of history with a small cemetery. $2 for adults.