Trenton, South Carolina History


The coming of the Charlotte, Columbia, and Augusta Railroad also saw the establishment of the town of Trenton in the late 1860's. The area has been long known as the Pine House community, a name derived from the "Piney Woods Tavern" or "Pine House," which was a stagecoach way-station located nearby. It was here that President George Washington dined in 1791 during his trip from Augusta to Columbia. Today, a marker stands near the intersection of S.C. Highway 121, 19, and 25 reporting his visit.

James Monroe Wise is thought to be the founder of Trenton, as he built the first store and residence in 1870 (still standing on Wise Street,) and was instrumental in developing the village. In 1877, a town charter was issued in the name of Trenton, and the name of the post office was changed from Pine House to Trenton the next year.

Also, plantation homes such as "Darby," and Col. Benjamin Hatcher's plantation home on Highway 25, and "Marshfield" on Youngblood Road, still stand in Trenton.

Ebenezer Baptist Church, organized in 1871, is located on the corner of Wise Street and Airport Road. Here the gravesite of Governor Benjamin Ryan (Pitchfork Ben) Tillman, who was a United States Senator during the administration of Woodrow Wilson, is peacefully nestled among weathered wrought iron fences and moss-covered statuary.

The Ben Tillman Library was established in 1923 and houses Tillman's portrait and many of the Senator's books and memorabilia. Tillman's old home site is located near the town limits on Highway 121, north of the Pine House.

When welcome visitors step inside three other old churches, Trenton Methodist (1874), Trenton Presbyterian Church (ca. 1875), and Our Savior Episcopal Church (1882), they experience a quiet reverence surrounded by simple and lasting tributes to devout inhabitants who carried the Christian banner for the Trenton community.





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