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History of Anderson, South Carolina

Anderson, county seat of Anderson County, is located on the Piedmont plateau in northwestern South Carolina. The Village of Pendleton was founded in 1790. Anderson was first settled in 1826 and incorporated in 1828, separating itself from the Pendleton district. The name honors General Robert Anderson, a hero of the Revolutionary War who explored the region in the middle of the 18th century. Not far from Anderson is the Pendleton Mill, now owned by La France Industries, which is the oldest cotton mill in the state still in operation. Anderson was one of the first cities in the South to be fully electrified with hydroelectric power. The first hydroelectric power to be generated in the area was from a plant at High Schoals on the Rocky River, built in 1894. Hartwell Dam across the Savannah River about 20 miles downriver has created Lake Hartwell, extending to the suburbs of Anderson. Within Anderson’s downtown Historic District can be found the Anderson County Courthouse, the Sullivan Building, the P&N Railroad Depot, the Confederate Monument on the square, the Anderson County Museum, the Anderson County Library, the Old Reformer (1764 Revolutionary War Cannon), and the Anderson County Arts Center, housed in a former Carnegie Library. Anderson College is considered one of the nation's top tier liberal arts colleges. The campus has three buildings dating from its founding in 1911. Forrest Junior College is a private two-year institution, which opened as the Carolina School of Commerce in 1946. Anderson's hospital services are provided by Anderson Area Medical Center, also known as AnMed Health.