Settlers began to move into what is now Cherokee County in the mid 1700s. They found Cherokee, Catawba, and Creek Indian tribes who had been using the land for hunting grounds. As the Native Americans were driven away, more European settlers moved into the area.
During the Revolutionary Period, saw mills, gun shops, flour mills, foundries, ironworks, and other industries increased and the area came to be known as the Iron District. Two major victories, Kings Mountain and Cowpens were fought in the Spartan and York Districts that would become Cherokee County.
On February 20, 1897, Cherokee County was formed from portions of Spartanburg, Union, and York Counties and Gaffney City was named the county seat. The Twentieth Century saw the growth and prosperity of the county through the development of agriculture and textiles. Today, with both declining, Cherokee County is redefining itself both economically and culturally.
Many historians consider the Revolutionary War to have been decided in the swamps, fields, woods and mountains of the South, won by the resilience and determination of Continental soldiers and Patriot militia. Although the full story of the Southern Campaigns is not widely known, the events of 1779-1782 in the Carolinas directly led to an American victory in the war. We call this history The Liberty Trail.
Make plans now to visit the Museum during February to see our collection of exhibits, artifacts, and stories related to Black History Month. Also, be sure to complete our Black History Month Scavenger Hunt, fun for the entire family!