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Colonial Dorchester State Historic Site

Colonial Dorchester State Historic Site
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300 State Park Road
Summerville, SC 29485


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Historic SitesMilitaryChurches & Cemeteries

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Site of a colonial village featuring original church tower, cemetery and archaeology sites

For almost one hundred years the village of Dorchester existed as an important inland trading center in colonial South Carolina. The village is gone now, but the fort that occupied one corner of Dorchester still stands overlooking the Ashley River. Made of oyster shell concrete called tabby, the fort was built during the French and Indian War to house some of the colony’s precious gunpowder supply. During the American Revolution, the entire town became a fortified post, first occupied by the Americans and then by the British. Dorchester never recovered from the effects of the war, and the village was gradually abandoned. Today Dorchester is preserved and interpreted through archaeological investigations into the layers of history right below your feet. You can even take part in the archaeology efforts or explore the fort and remaining church tower and cemetery on site.