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RESEARCH AID: COUNTY EVOLUTION
The area that is today known as Dillon County has been included in numerous
"political" divisions and you will need to know these earlier names in order to
effectively conduct your genealogical research.
(Get your aspirin handy, it's going to seem a mite confusing at first...)
In 1682/3, the Lords Proprietor of Carolina created Craven County, a vast region which
covered the upper part of the state and which included the area of modern Dillon County.
It was not a "county" in the sense that we use the term today. There was no
Craven County courthouse - residents of the area filed their legal documents in Charleston -
but Craven did function as an administrative division for the granting of land, etc.
NOTE: Records for this period, and up to 1785, will be found at the Archives (SCDAH) in Columbia.
The area of Dillon County was next: a part of the Anglican Parish of Saint James Santee when it was created
in 1706; then a part of both the Parishes of Prince George Winyaw (formed 1721) and Prince Frederick (formed 1734)
when Saint James Santee was subdivided.
Next, the area of Dillon County was part of Georgetown District Court when the judicial districts were
created in 1769 until 1785 when Georgetown District was divided into counties. Our area fell into Liberty County.
You won't find "Liberty County" used often but you will see it on the 1800 federal census for our area.
In 1798 the name was changed to Marion District, in honor of Francis Marion. In 1868, the area became
known as Marion County.
Lastly, in 1910 Dillon County was established, carved from Marion County.
--by Victoria Proctor ©1995, 1996, 2001, 2004
The Day the County Was
December 14, 1909 was the day they voted. After
some 12 to 15 years of persistent and unrelenting
effort the goal was finally achieved.
As a small boy living a block from Main Street
the noise of the celebration that night was indelibly
placed in my memory. There was much shouting and
fireworks. Older folk said men stood on each side of
the broad dirt Main Street and threw large
firecrackers at each other, as well as roman candles
and sky rockets.
As country folk left town late into the night I
could hear them passing by, racing their horses to
the buggies or mules to the wagons, shouting and
firing pistols. No doubt there was much liquid
stimulation to the festivities.
My childhood memory was confirmed when Dr.
Stokes quoted Mrs. Thad Bethea as saying, "The
county went wild."
-- Dolph BRADDY, © 1979
Many thanks to Mr. Bobby Braddy of Dillon, SC for granting permission to reprint
the above article on this web site.
Copyright © 1995, 1996, 2004, 2011, 2014, 2015 Victoria Proctor. All rights reserved.
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