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

Ashley River Historic District, Charleston and Dorchester County
(along Ashley River & S.C. Hwy. 61, Charleston & Summerville vicinities, Charleston & Dorchester Counties)
S1081771015801 S1081771015802 S1081771015803 S1081771015804 S1081771015805
Ashley River Ashley River Road Fort Bull Atlantic Coast Line
Railroad Trestle
Drayton Hall
S1081771015806 S1081771015807 S1081771015808 S1081771015809 S1081771015810
Magnolia Gardens
Magnolia Gardens Runnymede Runnymede
Middleton Place
S1081771015811 S1081771015812 S1081771015813 S1081771015814 S1081771015815
Middleton Place
Aerial View
The Laurels The Laurels
Caretaker's House
Old Dorchester
State Park
Old Dorchester
State Park
St. George
Church Tower
Map of the Ashley
River Historic District

The Ashley River Historic District is a unique nationally significant cultural landscape comprising 23,828.26-acres bounded by the Ashley River, the Ashley-Stono Canal, and a network of roads established in the late-17th century to connect Charleston with the extensive interior land holdings of the settlers as well as with important Native American trade routes. The district encompasses these roads as well as the buildings, structures, landscape features, and archaeological sites of the late-17th century through the mid-20th century. There are 136 resources contributing to the significance of the district and 68 noncontributing resources. Significant and well-known historic resources in the district include plantations, gardens, vernacular buildings, and country houses that were established along the banks of the Ashley River. However, it also includes the extensive savannas and wetlands that, as locations of major slave settlements, livestock pens and pastures, agricultural fields, and phosphate mining and forestry operations, were essential to the economic vitality of the plantation system. This is a system that was tested and defined during the Proprietary period, firmly established during the Colonial and Antebellum eras, and revived with new industry following the Civil War and Reconstruction which continued well into the 20th century. These tracts of land between the Ashley River to the north, and the Rantowles Creek/Stono Swamp watershed to the south continue to be exploited in the early-21st century for their timber and mineral resources, for their recreational value to equestrian and hunt clubs, and as a major tourist destination. Listed in the National Register September 12, 1994; Boundary increase October 22, 2010.

View a map showing the boundaries of the Ashley River Historic District.

View the complete text of the nomination form for this National Register property.

View the complete text of the nomination form for the boundary increase of this National Register property.

Most National Register properties are privately owned and are not open to the public. The privacy of owners should be respected. Not all properties retain the same integrity as when originally documented and listed in the National Register due to changes and modifications over time.

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