A Walking Tour of Florence, South Carolina
a walking tour in the Look Up, America series from walkthetown.com
by Doug Gelbert
published by Cruden Bay Books at Smashwords
Copyright 2010 by Cruden Bay Books
All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording or by any information storage and retrieval system without permission in writing from the Publisher.
Like many towns, the fact that there is a Florence today, is due to decisions made 150 years ago about whether a railroad would be placed here or, maybe, over there. In the 1850s in this area the main town was Mars Bluff and the largest store was owned by Colonel Eli Gregg. Gregg apparently was not overly fond of railroad workers and refused to allow the new Wilmington and Manchester Railroad to build their depot in his neighborhood. The depot instead was placed seven miles to the west in virgin pines. It became an important railroad junction in 1853 when the Northwestern Railroad arrived. A third line, the Cheraw and Darlington, entered and established shops in 1859.