About Us

Learn more about the Abbeville County Historical Society


About Abbeville County Historical Society

Welcome to our newly improved website. The Abbeville County Historical Society  is thrilled about our continued success, progress and goals including the future of Abbeville County. Tourism is South Carolina’s largest industry and we are proud to be a viable part of that, as related to rich our history.

Founded in 1957, our mission is to collect, preserve, interpret and share the rich history throughout Abbeville County. Our collections include things such as relevant old documents, letters, furnsingings, textiles, photos, paintings, publications, etc., that reflect how our citizens have lived through the ages. They are parts of the foundation of our rich heritage. In addition, we are interested in the historic buildings of our city and county and in the promotion of their preservation as well as historic gardens, parks and greenspaces to include our American Revolutionary War sites.

We are the parent organization of the Abbeville REV 250 Committee as we work to promote the 250th celebration of the American Revolutionary War in 2026 and thereafter. We also wholeheartedly endorse and support additional historical markers whether erected by the Society or our citizens.

Our headquarters of the Abbeville County Historical Society is the historic McGowan- Barksdale-Bundy House which is on the National Register of Historical Places and located at 305 North Main Street (mailing P.O.12 zip code 29620). The house, a true architectural treasure, was graciously deeded to the Society in 1989 by a nephew of Gen. Barksdale, the late Mr. J.D. Bundy, of Monroe, North Carolina. This house was home to two Generals, Gen. Samuel McGowan and Gen. William Barksdale.

It is a  Victorian Queen Anne house built in 1888 and painted in its original colors. The house has four levels: 1. The basement level that consist of the Franklin and Ann Pursley Railroad Museum which encompasses 4 rooms. One room has a large mural depicting the old 1896 Abbeville Train Depot and a HO Scale model train display. In addition, there are many items and artifacts from the railroad employees of Abbeville. Next is the old Poliakoff Dept. Store room, followed by the old Rough House Pool Hall Room and an underground root and wine cellar dating to 1859, (2) The main floor consist of a large living hall, library, dining room, ladies parlor, tower room, solarium and archives room, (3) the second story consist of a period bedroom, the late Joe Savitz Apothecary with the Carol Bateman and William Rogers antique pharmaceutical collections, two military memorabilia rooms with items from the American Revolutionary War, Civil War, WWI, WWII, and other wars forward. There is a small collection of toys displayed and last the 4th level is commodious storage attic.

The grounds consist of centuries old noted plants and trees including the S.C. State Champion Tea Olive in the front. We plan to reconstruct many of the original gardens from our Historical Architectural Landscapes Design based on the actual original gardens when acquired. Note the old Harpers Ferry bell.

There are 3 African-American cabins on the back grounds, two of which have plaster walls and were built in 1859. They are undoubtedly among the finest examples of Gothic Revival servants houses remaining in S.C. All three of the African-American cabins located behind the main house have received much preservation works over they years and still are undergoing major renovations and restoration.  In addition, the Franklin Pursley Railroad Park in the back is home to Caboose #5759.

Thank you,
Andrew E Hartsfield, President

ACHS Board

Board Member

Andrew E Hartsfield

Telephone: (864) 367-4075

Gabrielle Parker

Vice President
Telephone: (843) 640-7771

Board Member

William Rogers

Sr. Board Member, Acquisitions Director, Grant Writer, REV 250 Committee
Telephone: (864) 828-0462

Melissa Lewis

Telephone: (864) 323-2124

Sarah Rankin

Treasurer, Docent Co. Museum, REV 250 Committee
Telephone: (864) 378-0772

Bob Speer

Finance Director
Telephone: (864) 378-0772

Jenny Kelly

County Museum Director & Docent, REV 250 Committee
Telephone: (864) 378-0772

Bryson H. Poore

IT, Docent Museum
Telephone: (864) 992-6413

Courtney Mitchell

Christmas Candlelight Tours
Telephone: (864) 934-7140

Pam Knox

Docent Coordinator for Headquarters, REV 250 Committee
Telephone: (864) 421-7752

Jean Hutchinson

Historic Clothing and Gardens, Living Histories, REV 250 Committee
Telephone: (843) 830-8540