Blair — Blair, South Carolina
SC Picture Project | Fairfield County | Blair
The rural community of Blair in Fairfield County can be found halfway between Winnsboro and Newberry. Though it may look like a ghost town, hidden in the expansive woods in a 100-acre gem bustling with creativity.
While most of the town’s businesses are no longer in operation, Blair is home to a high-tech art school headed by world-renowned airbrush artist Dru Blair. His campus, which sits on the Sumter National Forest, provides housing for students who travel from all over to attend his four-day workshops using state-of-the-art equipment. His students are some of the most knowledgeable in the industry.
Yet the rest of Blair is as quiet as the pine forests surrounding these old buildings. The Blair General Store was owned by Ray Blair. Mr. Blair was not only the town merchant but also served on the Fairfield County school board. The building burned twice and was rebuilt both times.
Farming was another industry that sustained this small town. Its location on the Broad River made it a stop for farmers both bringing in produce and shipping it out.
Though the community’s offerings are small these days, a public library branch is still in operation here. However, most people travel to nearby Newberry to meet most of their commercial needs.
One service residents do not have to travel for is postal service. The town of Blair may be small, but the creative and industrious people who live and work there keep it going strong.
Many thanks to South Carolina Picture Project contributors Teri Leigh Teed and Jim Jenkins not only for their photos but for their information on Blair.
Reflections on Blair
Contributor Teri Leigh Teed, who took the top photo on this page, describes Blair: “Once the main river ferry point for farmers bringing their crops to the Blair General Store, Blair is now a sleepy village home to an artists’ school headed by world-famous airbrush painter extraordinaire, Dru Blair. Perched on the edge of the Broad River, Blair is a quiet, reflective place surrounded by forests and a great place for a stop of a Sunday afternoon drive in the fall.”
Address: Off South Carolina Highway 34, Blair, SC 29015
GPS Coordinates: 34.420972,-81.395702