Province of South Carolina

Province of South Carolina
Colony of Great Britain


Capital Charles Towne
Languages English, Catawba, Cherokee, Chickasaw, Muscogee, Yuchi, Shawnee
Government Constitutional monarchy
Legislature Commons House of Assembly
Historical era Colonial Era
   Established 1712
   Independence 1776
Currency Pound sterling
Preceded by
Succeeded by
Province of Carolina
State of South Carolina
Today part of  United States
A map of the southern British American colonies, featuring the Provinces of Carolina

The Province of South Carolina[1] (also known as the South Carolina Colony) was originally part of the Province of Carolina in British America, which was chartered by eight Lords Proprietor in 1663. The province later became the U.S. state of South Carolina.


The Carolinas were named for King Charles II of England. Derived from Latin Carolus, the colony was originally "Carolana," the spelling eventually changed to "Carolina." [Note that Carolana was also the name of a failed settlement plan in the late 1690s.] Charles Towne was the first settlement, established in 1670.

Charles II had given the land to a group of eight nobles called the Lords Proprietors; they planned for a Protestant Christian colony. Originally a single proprietary colony, the northern and southern sections grew apart over time, due partly to neglect by the (individual) legal heirs of the original Lords Proprietor. Dissent over governance of the province led to the appointment of a deputy governor to administer the northern half of the Carolina colony in 1691. The division of the Carolina Province into North Carolina and South Carolina became complete in 1712.

The Yamasee War (1715–1717) ravaged the back-country of the colony. Complaints that the proprietors had not done enough to protect the colonists against either the Indians or the neighboring Spanish, during Queen Anne's War, convinced many residents of the necessity of ending proprietary rule. A rebellion broke out against the proprietors in 1719. Acting on a petition of the residents of the colony, the British government appointed a royal governor for South Carolina in 1720. (The governor of North Carolina would continue to be appointed by the Lords Proprietor until 1729.)

After nearly a decade in which the British government sought to locate and buy out the proprietors, both North Carolina and South Carolina became British royal colonies in 1729.

Lord Charles Montagu (1741-1784) was Royal Governor of the Province of South Carolina from 1766 to 1773 until he escaped to Nova Scotia as with fellow United Empire Loyalists.


The Court of King's Bench and Common Pleas was founded c.1725, based in Charles Town (Charleston).

List of Chief Justices
Incumbent Tenure Notes
Took office Left office
Edmund Bohun 16981699 died in office of fever
Nicholas Trott c.17021718 dismissed from office after uprising
Richard Alleyn 1719
Robert Wright 17301739 died in office
Thomas Dale 17 Oct 1739Nov 1739
Benjamin Whitaker 7 Nov 17391749 removed from office due to paralysis
James Graeme 6 Jul 1749
Charles Pinckney 17521753
Peter Leigh 1753
James Michie 1 Sep 175916 Jul 1760 died in office, London, England
William Simpson 24 Jan 1761
Charles Skinner 1762
Thomas Knox Gordon 13 May 1771
William Henry Drayton 13 Apr 1776
John Rutledge 16 Feb 17911795 resigned and afterwards Chief Justice of the United States
after 1791 no further Chief Justices were appointed.

See also


  1. D.J. McCord (1839). The Statutes at Large of South Carolina. 6. A.S. Johnston. p. 616. ISBN 978-5-87571-708-6.
  2. The Statutes at Large of South Carolina. 1. A.S. Johnston. 1836. p. 439.

Further reading

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