by Tom Taylor
Eastern ghost towns are quite different from their western counterparts. Out west things are much further apart, so you can find towns that have been totally abandoned, where no one lives. In our part of the world the population density is much higher. While a town may have died out, there might still be an active community in the area. Another difference between eastern and western ghost towns is that eastern towns can be consumed by vegetation, making it difficult to spot them among the kudzu and other encroaching vines.
Starr is a town located in rural Anderson County, named so after an engineer for the Savannah Valley Railroad. The Shiloh School was built sometime in the late 1800s and served the children of Starr (once known as the little community of Holland Store) with three rooms, heat by fire, and no indoor plumbing. Today the school is barely standing and abandoned on private property in the middle of an active cow pasture, but is still brimming with the memories of children from decades ago.
Photos by Vanessa Kauffmann
by Tom Taylor
Vienna, Merritsville, Andersonville, Jocassee...all of these place names have something in common. Each was once a thriving town, now covered by the waters of a South Carolina lake. Perhaps the most compelling story, though, is that of the ghost town of Ferguson, once an active logging town with modern amenities along the banks of the Santee River. Remnants of the old town can still be seen on Ferguson Island in Lake Marion.