South Carolina

By: Maurice Rudd

South Carolina

Founded: 1663 by English colonists Major Industry: Plantation agriculture (indigo, rice, tobacco, cotton, cattle) Major Cities: Charleston Colony Named for: from Carolus, the Latin word for "Charles.Became a State: May 23, 1788

Five geographic areas

Geographic areas

South Carolina is composed of five geographic areas, or physiographic provinces, whose boundaries roughly parallel the Atlantic coastline. In the southeast part of the state is the Coastal Plain, which can be divided into the Outer and Inner Coastal Plains. From north to south the coast is divided into three separate areas, the Grand Strand, the Santee River Delta, and the Sea Islands. Further inland are the Sandhills, ancient dunes from what used to be South Carolina's coast millions of years ago. The Fall Line, which marks the limit of navigable rivers, runs along the boundary of the Sandhills and the Piedmont, which has rolling hills and clay soils. In the northwest corner of the state are the Blue Ridge Mountains, the smallest geographical region in the state.The state's coastline contains many salt marshes and estuaries, as well as natural ports such as Georgetown and Charleston. An unusual feature of the coastal plain is a large number of Carolina bays, the origins of which are uncertain. The bays tend to be oval, lining up in a northwest to southeast orientation. The terrain is flat and the soil is composed entirely of recent sediments such as sand, silt, and clay. Areas with better drainage make excellent farmland, though some land is swampy. The natural areas of the coastal plain are part of the Middle Atlantic coastal forests ecoregion.[