hundreds of years the Catawba Indians claimed
all of present Lancaster County as part of their
tribal lands. The Catawba were once considered
one of the most powerful Southeastern
Siouan-speaking tribes. The Catawba and other
Siouan peoples are believed to have coalesced as
individual tribes in the Southeast. Primarily
involved in agriculture, the Catawba were
friendly toward early European Immigrants.
When the first White people came in the early
1750s they settled between Rum Creek and Twelve
Mile Creek. Waxhaw Creek within this area had
taken its name from the Waxhaw Indian tribe. The
majority of the new settlers were Scots-Irish
from Pennsylvania; others from North Carolina
and Virginia joined them.
Many of the early settlers came to South
Carolina from Lancaster, Pennsylvania. They had
named their county for the House of Lancaster
which had opposed the House of York in the
struggles of 1455-85, known as the War of the
Roses. The House of Lancaster chose the red rose
as their emblem while their neighbor, York
County, boasts the white rose.
A second settlement was made in the lower part
of the present Lancaster County on Hanging Rock
Creek. The first grant was made there in 1752,
and included the huge overhanging mass of rock
from which the creek takes its name. About the
time this section was opened up, others came in
and settled along Lynches Creek, Little Lynches
creek, Flat Creek, Beaver Creek, and lower Camp
Creek. In coming to the Lancaster area, the
first settlers had to follow old Indian paths,
which became traveled so frequently, they were
coming to be known as roads.
The Rocky River Road is an old route that
originated as an Indian path. Along there in the
American Revolutionary War, Colonel Abraham
Buford fled from Tarleton and was overtaken a
few miles south of the North Carolina state line
where the Patriot forces were defeated in a
controversial struggle known as the Battle of
Waxhaws, also known as Bufords Massacre to
locals. Today, the Rocky River Road is part of
South Carolina Highway 522, the latter following
the old thoroughfare very closely.
York SC &
Temp. State Coordinator:
Denise Wells Asst.
Jeff Kemp |
Contact State Coordinator to adopt this county!
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