South Carolina Department of Archives and History
National Register Properties in South Carolina

Sewee Mound, Charleston County (Address Restricted)
S1081771002301 S1081771002302
Exterior of
Interior of

(The Old Fort) Sewee Mound is one of 20 or more prehistoric shell rings located from the central coast of South Carolina to the central coast of Georgia. All are believed to date early in the second millennium BC, and they contain some of the earliest pottery known in North America. The function of the ring shape is unknown, although the rings appear to be carefully planned and systematically deposited structures. As such, they also present one of the earliest records of sedentary life among people who must have lived entirely by foraging. The average diameter of the ring from crest to crest is about 149 feet. The midden in some areas reaches 10 feet above a flat central floor, devoid of shell, which is about 5 feet above mean sea level. The ring is composed of loosely packed oyster shell and lesser amounts of pottery sherds, bone, and other molluscs. It is located on the edge of a salt marsh and is only partially covered by tree growth. A small midden of oyster shell about 35 feet in maximum dimension is located about 75 feet southwest of the ring. Listed in the National Register October 15, 1970.

View the complete text of the nomination form for this National Register property. In addition, the Historic Resources of the Late Archaic-Early Woodland Period Shell Rings of South Carolina, ca. 1,000-2,200 years B.C. includes historical background information for this and other related National Register properties.

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