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Graniteville, South Carolina facts for kids

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Graniteville, South Carolina
Mill houses in Graniteville
Mill houses in Graniteville
Graniteville, South Carolina is located in South Carolina
Graniteville, South Carolina
Graniteville, South Carolina
Location in South Carolina
Country  United States of America
State  South Carolina
County Seal of Aiken County, South Carolina.png Aiken
Founded 1845
Area
 • Total 3.32 sq mi (8.61 km2)
 • Land 3.31 sq mi (8.56 km2)
 • Water 0.02 sq mi (0.05 km2)
Elevation
227 ft (69 m)
Population
 (2010)
 • Total 2,614
 • Density 790/sq mi (305.2/km2)
ZIP code
29829
Graniteville WelcomeSign
Graniteville welcome sign

Graniteville is a census-designated place (CDP) in Aiken County, South Carolina, United States. The population was 2,614 at the 2010 census. It lies along U.S. Route 1, five miles (8.0 km) west of Aiken in Horse Creek Valley, which originates in the nearby town of Vaucluse.

Graniteville is part of the Augusta, Georgia metropolitan area, also known as the C.S.R.A. or Central Savannah River Area.

History

GranitevilleSC OldMill
Old Graniteville Mill headquarters

Graniteville dates back to 1845 when William Gregg built the South's first large-scale cotton mill in what became known as Graniteville. His paternalistic mill town included 90 homes, several boarding houses, six stores, two churches, and a school for the mill workers and their families. The community got its name because most of those original buildings were constructed of blue granite. Gregg required the children of mill workers to attend the public school he instituted, and violators were fined. As such, Graniteville holds the distinction of having the first compulsory education system in the Southern United States.

The Graniteville Historic District was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1978.

GranitevilleSC DerailmentSite
Site of derailment at Graniteville, South Carolina
GranitevilleSC DerailmentMonument
Monument to the crash's victims

On January 6, 2005, a Norfolk Southern Railway freight train struck a parked train on the spur leading to Avondale's Stevens Steam Plant. One of two train cars that were carrying liquid chlorine ruptured, releasing a poisonous chlorine cloud. Nine people were killed, more than 550 injured, and more than 5,400 were displaced from their homes for more than a week. The town built a memorial in a small park at the intersection of Canal Street and Aiken Road, and on May 20, 2006, the memorial was dedicated to the people who died in the crash.

In 2008, there were talks about incorporating the villages of Graniteville, Vaucluse, and Warrenville; as a result, the towns approved a referendum to vote on whether or not to incorporate. If approved, the municipality would have had an area of around 20 square miles (52 km2). The referendum was defeated by a two-to-one margin in August 2008.

Demographics

2020 census

Graniteville racial composition
Race Num. Perc.
White (non-Hispanic) 1,441 59.08%
Black or African American (non-Hispanic) 632 25.91%
Native American 12 0.49%
Asian 14 0.57%
Pacific Islander 1 0.04%
Other/Mixed 95 3.9%
Hispanic or Latino 244 10.0%

As of the 2020 United States census, there were 2,439 people, 1,220 households, and 810 families residing in the CDP.

2010 census

As of 2010, the total population of the CDP was 2,614. 0.65% American Indian and Alaska Native, 0.04% were Asian, 28.62% were African American, 0.08% were Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islander, 65.26% were white, 2.83% were some other race, and 2.52% were of two or more races. People of Hispanic or Latino origin (of any race) were 5.93% of the population.

Males were 47.59% of the population, and females were 52.41%. The age distribution of the population was 9.45% under 5 years of age, 18.06% 5 to 17 years, 57.46% 18 to 64 years, and 15.03% age 65 and over.

Economy

Until 1996, Graniteville was the home office and central location of a collection of textile plants in South Carolina and Georgia known as The Graniteville Company. In 1996, the company was bought out by Avondale Mills, a company which was one of the largest denim manufacturers in the United States. Avondale closed or sold off all of its plants in the area in 2006, unable to recover financially from the train accident in 2005. Graniteville is also home to a Bridgestone/Firestone Tire and Rubber Company plant.

A continuing legacy of The Graniteville Company is the Gregg-Graniteville Foundation, which was established by the company in 1941 in honor of Mr. Gregg. To continue his concern for people, the Foundation awards annual college scholarships and other charitable contributions. Gregg Park Civic Center, a recreational complex, has services offered to community residents at a nominal charge. The Foundation funds the complex which includes a walking track, softball and baseball fields, tennis courts, swimming area, picnic area. The gym includes a basketball court, weight room, exercise room, racquetball courts, locker rooms and showers.

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