The Cotton Fields of Orangeburg
By Jeannette Holland Austin
If you drive through Orangeburg today it is likely that you will see white cotton growing in the fields. This is because cotton plantations were developed in the region during the 19th century and after the invention of the cotton gin, short-staple cotton became profitable. Cotton processing plants still operate in the area.
Orangeburg County Wills and EstatesOrangeburg District was established in 1769 and included the counties of Lexington, Orange, Winton and Lewisburg. It was named for the Prince of Orange, William IV (1711-1751), who was also the son-in-law of King George II. The name was first used in the 1730s for a township on the Edisto River. Orangeburg District was established in 1769, and from 1785 to 1791 it included four counties: Lexington, Orange, Winton, and Lewisburg. Swiss and German farmers began settling the area about 1735, with English settlers from the low country following.
During the Revolutionary War, the battle of Eutaw Springs was fought on September 8, 1781 which was the last major battle of the war in South Carolina. Afterwards, large cotton plantations were established.
Orangeburg County Records Available to Members of South Carolina Pioneers
- Index to Orangeburgh District Intestate Records 1819
- St. Matthews Tax List for 1818
Need to know if your ancestors left a will or estate record? An easy, quick (and free) way to find out is to click on the links below.
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