South Carolina Picture Project

Mount Croghan — Mount Croghan, South Carolina

SC Picture Project  |  Chesterfield County  |  Mount Croghan

The rural community of Mount Croghan in Chesterfield County dates back to the American Revolution when a French officer, Major Croan, set up camp here on his way from Camden to Virginia in 1780. Legend has it that Major Croan camped on a nearby hill to keep watch. Mount Croghan is a variation on Major Croan’s name.

Mt. Croghan Barn

James (Jim) Jenkins of Chesterfield, 2014 © Do Not Use Without Written Consent

Looking at the worn remnants of this small farming community, it is hard to imagine economic growth taking root here. Yet by 1809 Mount Croghan was established enough to have a post office, and Elizabeth Baptist Church formed in 1825. The town’s first school, Elizabeth Academy, was built in 1836, and Mount Croghan seemed to be moving forward in both education and community development. However, Mount Croghan was burned by Union troops towards the end of the Civil War in 1865, destroying much of the town and its records. Elizabeth Academy also was lost in the fire.

Mt. Croghan School

James (Jim) Jenkins of Chesterfield, 2014 © Do Not Use Without Written Consent

The community quickly built another school, Mount Croghan Academy; it was not successful and closed in 1900. Despite the school’s closing, the rest of the town finally began to recover from the war, as the Chesterfield and Lancaster Railroad was established nearby and allowed residents to transport their crops and wares. As a result, a new school, pictured above, was built in 1912.

Mt. Croghan Gym

James (Jim) Jenkins of Chesterfield, 2014 © Do Not Use Without Written Consent

The growing economy in this small community would not last, however. Following the Great Depression, Mount Croghan was once again destitute, yet its people still greatly valued education. The Works Progress Administration (WPA) designated a gymnasium be built for the school, and in 1933 the gym (pictured above), built of local stones, was was completed.

Mt. Croghan Museum

James (Jim) Jenkins of Chesterfield, 2014 © Do Not Use Without Written Consent

Sadly, Mount Croghan suffered another fire in 1931. Though the school and gymnasium were spared, likely due to their building materials, a significant part of the town was not so fortunate. Many businesses lost in the fire were never rebuilt, and the local economy saw a steep decline. By the 1950s Mount Croghan’s population was decreasing rapidly, as people were moving to more industrialized towns for jobs. Today the population numbers just over 100 people, but the local museum keeps Mount Croghan’s history alive.

Mount Croghan Map

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6 Comments about Mount Croghan

SCIWAYNo Gravatar says:
May 12th, 2017 at 4:25 pm

We wouldn’t know concretely without a good bit of research but it sounds highly plausible that these are related.

William CROGHANNo Gravatar says:
May 11th, 2017 at 4:13 pm

I am originally a Maryland “Croghan.” My family tree dates back to County Roscommon, Ireland in the early 1800’s. Another unrelated branch of the Croghan clan made its way to Charleston, SC and became quite prominent. Could this “Major Croan” be related to them?

SCIWAYNo Gravatar says:
April 24th, 2017 at 9:53 am

HI, there is a map at the bottom of the page. Best of luck!

mama of 2No Gravatar says:
April 21st, 2017 at 7:20 pm

Where is the school and the gym? Would very much like to see these buildings for their beautiful history! Thank you for the informative site! Mt. Croghan is a lovely little place.

Sellers girlNo Gravatar says:
March 13th, 2017 at 7:16 am

My grandparents, Jule and Mae Sellers, lived in Mt. Croghan. My Dad and Mom took us to see them almost every weekend. As a child, I played in the fields and woods nearby. The old schoolhouse had closed but my cousins and I would sneak up to the school and play in the yard and climb the fire escapes. Mt. Croghan played a very important part of my childhood. I still visit in June for the town festival when I can. It holds many wonderful memories for me.

AshleyNo Gravatar says:
April 23rd, 2015 at 12:59 pm

I drive by the Mt. Croghan Academy school everyday on my way home from work, I love the building and want to get married there under the gazebo looking thing in the back/side, who can I call about this?



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