This site is the result of a project to determine the location of substantially all of the plats of land grants made by the British Crown in the portion of South Carolina which, after the Revolutionary War, became Abbeville District or County. The area constitutes modern-day Abbeville County and most of McCormick and Greenwood Counties. The earliest plat in this area dates from 1738, and plats of royal grants continued to be certified by surveyors until the fall of 1775. I have located approximately 1,700 plats for land grants in this area.
The Savannah River constituted the southwestern border of Abbeville District, and the Saluda River its northeastern border. Its northwestern border (now the border between Abbeville and Anderson Counties) was the demarcation line between the lands held by the Cherokee Indians and South Carolina. Long Cane Creek and its western branch, Little River or the Northwest Fork of Long Cane, is the principal internal watercourse. The southern corner of Abbeville District was the mouth of Long Cane Creek on Savannah River. The southeastern boundary of Abbeville District ran generally northeast from this point to the Saluda River, near the mouth of Ninety Six Creek.

Major Streams

The names of the major streams located in Abbeville District or included on the plat map, and their names in the colonial era, were as follows:


Modern NameColonial Names


Long Cane Creek
Long Cane Creek
Little River
Northwest Fork of Long Cane Creek
Rocky River
Great Rockey Creek or Rocky River
Swaney Creek
Sawney Creek or Sanes Creek
Calhoun Creek
Calhoun Creek or waters of Northwest Fork of Long Cane
Gill Creek
waters of Northwest Fork of Long Cane
McKenley Creek
waters of Northwest Fork of Long Cane
Shanklin Creek
Swearingham's Creek
Penny Creek
Penny Creek
Park Creek
Parks Creek
Spur Creek
Spur Creek
Johnson Creek
Johnson Creek or Thomson Creek
Chickasaw Creek
Clark Creek or Chickasaw Camp Creek
Hogskin Creek
Hogskin Creek
Bold Branch
Bold Branch
Reedy Branch
Reedy Branch
Big Curltail Creek
Curltail Creek or Cureltail Creek
Norris Creek
Norris Creek or Frazer Creek
Bailey Creek
Halliday Creek
Turkey Creek
Turkey Creek
Mulberry Creek
Mulberry Creek
Ninety Six Creek
Ninety Six Creek
Wilson Creek
Wilson Creek
Coronaca Creek
Coronaca Creek
Cuffeetown Creek
Cuffeetown Creek, Haw Tree Creek or Cheves Creek
Hard Labor Creek
Hard Labor Creek
Rocky Creek
Rocky Creek
Howe Creek
Russells Creek
Russells Creek
Russells Creek

Hamilton's Great Survey

The largest land parcel granted in Abbeville District was a grant of 200,000 acres made by King George II to William Livingstone & Associates, a group of English speculators, on 27 June 1752. From subsequent deed recitals, it appears that Livingstone and Associates ten years earlier in June 1742 actually obtained an order for the 200,000 acres, but the order lapsed. John Hamilton, a Charlestown speculator and merchant, intended to petition for a renewal of the same order for himself, but agreed with Livingstone that Livingstone would use his name on the petition and would assign the property to Hamilton. The royal order, which was renewed on 28 June 1749, required that the land would be laid out in 4 lots of 50,000 acres each, within ten miles of each other. Livingstone & Associates were required to have the land surveyed and granted within three years, and to settle 1,000 Protestants on the parcels within ten years. The surveys of three of the four parcels (Nos. 2, 3 and 4) have been located at the South Carolina Department of Archives and History and are shown on the map. These surveys were made in November 1751. Numbers 3 and 4 are for 50,000 acres, while parcel number 4 covers 63,150 acres because of several large previously granted parcels within its boundaries. Although the actual plat has not been located, the boundaries of No. 1 are assumed based on the location of adjoining plats, and its size is known to be 50,000 acres based on subsequent deed recitals. Pursuant to their agreement, John Hamilton was assigned all four parcels in June 1753 by William Livingstone.

Hamilton sold the 50,000 acre tract no. 1 in November 1755 to William Simpson and John Murray, both of Charlestown. Simpson and Murray in turn in July 1758 divided this parcel into a 25,000 acre northern parcel owned by Simpson and a 25,000 acre southern parcel owned by Murray.

In November 1755, Hamilton conveyed tracts the northeastern and northwestern tracts, 3 and 4, to Joseph Salvador, a Jewish merchant in London. Salvador sold his son Francis Salvador a 5,166 acre tract on Coronaca Creek which became "Coronaca Plantation." Francis subsequently became a delegate to the South Carolina First Provincial Congress in January 1775, and was killed by Cherokee Indians in one of the earliest engagements of the Revolutionary War in South Carolina in August 1776.

Townships

The South Carolina royal government established three townships in the colonial era in Abbeville District. Two were established in 1762--Boonesborough Township, in the northern portion of the District near the head waters of Long Cane Creek and Parks Creek, and Belfast Township, on Hard Labor Creek. Both townships included 22,000 acres of ungranted land which was reserved for grants to "Foreign Protestants from the Kingdom of Ireland," or Scotch-Irish immigrants. In 1764, another township, Hillsborough Township, was established for a group of French Huguenot immigrants led by their pastor, Jean Louis Gibert. The township was a 28,000 acre square (containing 26,000 ungranted acres) located on the junction of Long Cane Creek and the Northwest Fork of Long Cane Creek. A fourth township, Londonborough, is referred to in several plats to immigrants from the German Palatine, but no separate plat for Londonborough has been found, and several of the plats are located in Belfast Township.

Map and Index

Below are links to the plat map and index. The map is a large file, and should only be viewed using a high-speed internet connection. The index contains an alphabetical listing of the grantees of the 1,700 plats shown on the map, the size and location of the parcel, the surveyor, neighbors and a link to the digitized original plat at the South Carolina Department of Archives and History.

Plat Map

Main Index Page