The Royal Colony of South Carolina

South Carolina Parishes - 1704 to 1775

In 1704, Governor Nathaniel Johnson pressed the South Carolina General Assembly to pass what became known as "The Establishment Act," which made sure that the Church of England was the official religion of the Province and that "dissenters" could not hold office in the government. This Act created one named parish - St. Philip's, Charlestown - and six un-named parishes. However, the dissenters complained to the authorities in England and Parliament and Queen Anne soon declared this act null and void.

On November 30, 1706, the General Assembly of South Carolina repealed this Act, but on the same date it ratified what became known as "The Church Act" of November 30, 1706. The "Church Act" re-identified St. Philip's, Charlestown Parish, then named six more parishes in Berkeley County, two parishes in Colleton County, and one parish in Craven County, as shown below.

On December 18, 1708, the South Carolina General Assembly combined St. Dennis's Parish with St. Thomas's Parish, with a new name of "St. Dennis and St. Thomas Parish."

On June 7, 1712, the South Carolina General Assembly created St. Helena's Parish in Granville County.

On December 11, 1717, the South Carolina General Assembly divided St. Andrew's Parish and created St. George's, Dorchester Parish.

On September 15, 1721, the South Carolina General Assembly redefined the boundaries of St. George's, Dorchester Parish.

On March 10, 1721/2, the South Carolina General Assembly divided St. James, Santee Parish and created Prince George's, Winyah Parish.

On April 9, 1734, the South Carolina General Assembly divided St. Paul's Parish and created St. John's, Colleton Parish. In the same Act, they divided Prince George's, Winyah Parish and created Prince Frederick's Parish.

On May 25, 1745, the South Carolina General Assembly divided St. Helena's Parish and created Prince William's Parish.

On February 17, 1746/7, the South Carolina General Assembly divided St. Helena's Parish and created St. Peter's Parish.

On June 14, 1751, the South Carolina General Assembly divided St. Philip's, Charlestown Parish and created St. Michael's Parish.

On May 11, 1754, the South Carolina General Assembly divided St. James, Santee Parish and created St. Stephen's Parish.

On May 21, 1757, the South Carolina General Assembly divided Prince Frederick's Parish and created St. Mark's Parish.

On May 23, 1767, the South Carolina General Assembly divided St. Helena's Parish and created St. Luke's Parish. In the same Act, they divided Prince George's, Winyah Parish and created All Saints Parish.

On April 12, 1768, the South Carolina General Assembly took from St. Mark's Parish and Prince Frederick's Parish and created St. David's Parish. On the same date in another Act, they created St. Matthew's Parish in the backcountry to include Orangeburgh District and Ninety-Six District.

Maps Showing the Parishes of South Carolina

1729

1740

1750

1760

1770

1775

Chronology of Parishes Created in South Carolina

Parish

Year Created

Year Abolished*

Original County

Notes

St. Philip's, Charlestown

1704

1775

Berkeley
First Act voided. Re-established in 1706.

Christ Church

1706

1775

Berkeley
 

St. Andrew's

1706

1775

Berkeley
Divided in 1717 to create St. George's Parish.

St. Dennis's

1706

1775

Berkeley
Combined with St. Thomas Parish in 1708.

St. James, Goose Creek

1706

1775

Berkeley
 

St. John's, Berkeley

1706

1775

Berkeley
 

St. Thomas's

1706

1775

Berkeley
Combined with St. Dennis's Parish in 1708.

St. Bartholomew's

1706

1775

Colleton
 

St. Paul's

1706

1775

Colleton
Divided in 1734 to create St. John's, Colleton.

St. James, Santee

1706

1775

Craven
Divided in 1721 to create Prince George's Parish.

St. Helena's

1712

1775

Granville
Divided in 1745 to create Prince William's Parish.

St. George's, Dorchester

1717

1775

Berkeley
Created out of St. Andrew's Parish.

Prince George's, Winyah

1721/2

1775

Craven
Created out of St. James, Santee Parish.

St. John's, Colleton

1734

1775

Colleton
Created out of St. Paul's Parish.

Prince Frederick's

1734

1775

Craven
Created out of Prince George's, Winyah Parish.

Prince Williams

1745

1775

Granville
Created out of St. Helena's Parish.

St. Peter's

1746/7

1775

Granville
Created out of St. Helena's Parish.

St. Michael's

1751

1775

Berkeley
Created out of St. Philip's Charlestown Parish.

St. Stephen's

1754

1775

Berkeley
Created out of St. James, Santee Parish.

St. Mark's

1757

1775

Craven
Created out of Prince Frederick's Parish.

St. Luke's

1767

1775

Granville
Created out of St. Helena's Parish.

All Saints

1767

1775

Craven
Created out of Prince George's, Winyah Parish.

St. Matthew's

1768

1775

Craven
New in the backcountry.

St. David's

1768

1775

Craven
Created out of Prince Frederick's Parish.
*All Parishes were discontinued for ecclesiastical purposes at the onset of the American Revolution, but since so many people continued to depend upon them, they continued for several more years in this capacity. However, the South Carolina State Constitution continued ALL of them as "election districts" up to the end of the American Civil War in 1865. In the new South Carolina Constitutions of 1865 and 1868, all mentions of parishes were eliminated.


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