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

Belle Isle Rice Mill Chimney, Georgetown County (Cat Island, Georgetown vicinity)
S1081772202001 S1081772202002
Overview Chimney Detail

(Black Out Plantation) The rice mill chimney is significant as one of seven known extant rice mill chimneys in Georgetown County. The agricultural features are significant as exceptionally intact examples of historic ricefields. Both are significant for their association with Belle Isle, which was one of several productive rice plantations on Cat Island. It is also one of two extant rice mill chimneys in Georgetown County which retain enough bricks at the top to illustrate their original corbeling. The chimney at Belle Isle is 33’9” high, an average height for this property type. It is 5’11” square at the base, gradually tapering to 3’4” square below the necking and corbeling at the top. Two arched opening for the firebox are located opposite each other at the base. A flared footing of four brick courses form the visible base at ground level. This Belle Isle should not be confused with the much better known Belle Isle on Winyah Bay, on the mainland. The Belle Isle on Cat Island was one of the two plantations owned by Richard Henry Lowndes, who cultivated rice ca. 1830-1860. After Lowndes’ death in 1905, Belle Isle passed to his son Richard I. Lowndes, who was first president of the Georgetown Milling Company. Belle Isle was renamed Black Out in the mid-twentieth century and is one of several Georgetown County rice plantations which are now in use as hunting clubs and wildlife preserves. Listed in the National Register October 3, 1988.

View the complete text of the nomination form for this National Register property. In addition, the Historic Resources of the Georgetown County Rice Culture, ca. 1750-ca. 1910 includes historical background information for this and other related National Register properties.

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