Postwar Decline of the Rice Culture
Although to some degree rice production on the Cooper River-as in the rest of the South Carolina lowcountry-had a short-lived and small-scale revival after the Civil War, between 1880 and 1900 it suffered a steady and permanent decline before disappearing from the landscape almost altogether by about 1920.

This was due in part because it was impossible for planters to hire a large enough labor force to grow rice on a scale that would justify the effort and expense, and in part because changes in the method of rice production, shifting from a tidal system to an upland system featuring irrigation, made it easier and more profitable to grow rice in Louisiana, Texas, and Arkansas.

Although Berkeley County still produced six million pounds of rice in 1900, production declined sharply during the ensuing two decades.
61 The last crop grown at Mulberry Plantation, for example, was in 1916.

After timber companies such as A.C. Tuxberry and the Atlantic Coast Lumber Company bought much of the former plantation land, yet another transformation occurred in the landscape during the Great Depression. When these financially troubled companies asked the federal government to buy them out, it established the 250,000-acre Francis Marion National Forest in 1936.

The forest has long supported or encouraged timber production, watershed protection, wildlife conservation, and recreation.
62 Two Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) camps were located within the bounds of the forest. These served as bases for the lowcountry component of an effort that planted more than 56 million trees in South Carolina, built firebreaks, fought forest fires, and created the basis of the South Carolina State Park system.
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Historic Resources of the Cooper River, ca. 1670-ca. 1950
Historic Resources of the Cooper River, ca. 1670-ca. 1950
United States Department of the Interior
National Park Service
National Register of Historic Places
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Statement of Historic Context

European Settlement


The Church Act and the Parish System

Trade and Commodities

The Rice Culture, Plantations, and Slavery


The American Revolution


The Recovery of the Rice Culture, Mills, and Canals

The Civil War and Reconstruction

Postwar Decline of the Rice Culture

The Second "Yankee" Invasion

The Changing Landscape

Properties Listed in the National Register