South Carolina Counties
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South Carolina Counties

South Carolina is made up of fourty-six counties. They range in size from 392 square miles (1,016 square kilometers) in the case of Calhoun County to 1,358 square miles (3,517 square kilometers) in the case of Charleston County. The least populous county is McCormick County, with only 9,958 residents, while the most populous county is Greenville County, with a population of 395,357, despite the state's most populous city, Columbia, being located in Richland County.

Dorchester County, South Carolina

Dorchester County Education, Geography, and History

Dorchester County, South Carolina Courthouse

Dorchester County is a county located in the state of South Carolina.  Based on the 2010 census, the population was 136,555. Dorchester is named for Dorchester, Massachusetts. Its county seat is St. George.

Dorchester County is included in the Charleston-North Charleston, SC Metropolitan Statistical Area.

Etymology - Origin of Dorchester County Name

Dorchester County is named for its first settlement area, which was established by Congregationalists in 1696. These settlers applied the name "Dorchester" after their last residence in Dorchester, Massachusetts


County QuickFacts: CensusBureau Quick Facts

Dorchester County History

Dorchester County was named for Dorchester, Massachusetts. In 1696, Congregationalists from that town moved south and established a new settlement called Dorchester. Although the town of Dorchester had been abandoned by 1788, the parish in which it was located continued to be referred to as St. George Dorchester. This name was subsequently adopted for the county when it was formed from parts of Colleton and Berkeley counties in 1897. The town of Summerville was settled in the late eighteenth century as a summer resort for planters who wished to escape the malaria prevalent on their rice plantations; the town later became a winter resort also. Middleton Place Gardens, the remains of an old rice plantation, are the oldest landscaped gardens in the country, having been laid out in 1741. Middleton Place was the home of Henry Middleton (1717-1784), president of the Continental Congress, his son Arthur Middleton (1742-1787), a signer of the Declaration of Independence, and his grandson Henry Middleton (1770-1846), South Carolina Governor, United States Congressman, and Ambassador to Russia.

Geography: Land and Water

As reported by the Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 577 square miles (1,494 km2), of which, 575 square miles (1,489 km2) of it is land and 2 square miles (5 km2) of it (0.34%) is water.

Neighboring Counties

Bordering counties are as follows:

  • Berkeley County, South Carolina - east
  • Charleston County, South Carolina - southeast
  • Colleton County, South Carolina - southwest
  • Bamberg County, South Carolina - west
  • Orangeburg County, South Carolina - northwest


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