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Anderson, South Carolina

Anderson, South Carolina
City of Anderson
Downtown Anderson
Downtown Anderson
Motto: "The Electric City"
Location of Anderson, South Carolina
Location of Anderson, South Carolina
Country United States
State South Carolina
County Anderson
 • Type Council-manager government
 • Mayor Terence Roberts
 • City Manager John Moore
 • Total 14.6 sq mi (37.9 km2)
 • Land 14.6 sq mi (37.8 km2)
 • Water 0.04 sq mi (0.1 km2)
 • Total 26,686
 • Density 1,829/sq mi (706.0/km2)
Website .com.cityofandersonscwww

Anderson is a city in and the county seat of Anderson County, South Carolina, United States.[1] The population was 26,686 at the 2010 census,[2] and the city was the center of an urbanized area of 75,702.[3] It is one of the principal cities in the Greenville-Mauldin-Anderson Metropolitan Statistical Area, contiguous with Anderson County, which had a population of 187,126 at the 2010 census. It is further included in the larger Greenville-Spartanburg-Anderson, South Carolina Combined Statistical Area, with a total population of 1,266,995, at the 2010 census. Anderson is just off Interstate 85 and is 120 miles (190 km) from Atlanta and 140 miles (230 km) from Charlotte.

Anderson is the smallest of the three primary cities that makes up the Upstate region and is nicknamed "The Electric City" and "The Friendliest City in South Carolina". Anderson's spirit and quality of life have earned national recognition as Anderson County was named an "All-America City" in 2000.

Anderson is the home of Anderson University, a selective private comprehensive university of approximately 3,000 undergraduate and graduate students.


  • History 1
  • Geography 2
  • Cityscape 3
    • Downtown 3.1
    • Historic districts 3.2
    • Parks and recreation 3.3
  • Economy 4
  • Hospitals 5
  • Education 6
    • Higher education 6.1
  • Transportation 7
    • Airport 7.1
    • Roads and highways 7.2
    • Public transit 7.3
  • Shopping 8
    • Anderson Mall 8.1
  • Demographics 9
  • Government 10
  • Notable residents 11
  • Sister cities 12
  • References 13
  • External links 14


Anderson was named for a Revolutionary War hero, Robert Anderson. General Anderson and Andrew Pickens surveyed the land in this area. The Cherokee Native Americans lived in this area until 1777. The land was then ceded to South Carolina by the Cherokee in a treaty negotiated by Pickens. This area was then called the Pendleton District for official purposes. In 1826, the Pendleton District was divided into two districts  — Anderson and Pickens. Because the town of Pendleton was at the top of the county, too close to the Pickens border, a new courthouse was built at the center of the county. A small town, named Anderson Courthouse, grew up around the courthouse, and this community eventually became known as Anderson. Anderson was incorporated by an act of the state legislature, December 19, 1833. The original courthouse was built of logs, but 10 years later, a courthouse made of bricks was erected to replace it. A still-standing Anderson County Courthouse, built in 1898, now faces the current courthouse and is built on the site of the original.

The settlers of this area were mostly Scots-Irish who came from Virginia and Pennsylvania to farm. Farmers grew corn and raised hogs. Much later, cotton became the cash crop of the area. By the late 19th century, the Anderson area was filled with numerous textile mills. Due to the innovation of Anderson engineer William Whitner, electricity could be conducted by wire to mills throughout the county. Anderson was the first city in the United States to have a continuous supply of electric power, which was supplied by a water mill located in the high shoals area of the Rocky River in Anderson County. The first cotton gin in the world to be operated by electricity was built in Anderson County in 1897. Several areas of Anderson are named in Whitner's honor, including a downtown street. Anderson became known as "The Electric City", a nickname that it still holds today.

On November 14, 1931, the famous aviator Amelia Earhart flew into the Anderson airport in her Pitcairn PCA-2 Autogyro, attracting over 1,000 spectators. Mayor G.T. McGregor and other city leaders met her at the airport. She was piloting the Autogyro on a nationwide tour promoting Beech-Nut products. Earhart landed at the original Anderson County Airport, founded in 1928 on the highest land Anderson County owned. This "airport," a mere grass strip originally planned as an emergency landing field, later became a joint city-county facility where planes delivering air mail landed. The field functioned until the land for the current airport on Highway 24 was purchased and developed in the mid-1930s.[4][5]

Anderson was the site of some of the 2008 filming of Leatherheads.

The Anderson College Historic District, Anderson Downtown Historic District, Anderson Historic District, Caldwell-Johnson-Morris Cottage, Denver Downs Farmstead, Kennedy Street School, North Anderson Historic District, Dr. Samuel Marshall Orr House, and Ralph John Ramer House are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.[6]


Anderson is located at (34.514506, −82.648944),[7] in the northwest corner of Charlotte, North Carolina.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 14.6 square miles (37.9 km2), of which 14.6 square miles (37.8 km2) is land and 0.039 square miles (0.1 km2), or 0.30%, is water.[8]



Downtown Anderson is located in the center of Anderson County, approximately 8 miles (13 km) south of Interstate 85. Downtown is bounded to the north by Greenville Street, to the east by Fant Street, to the south by Franklin Street, and to the west by Towers Street.

Many of the original buildings still line the streets but are in different stages of revitalization, with some recently completed while others are still under construction. One of the more prominent structures remodeled was the Chiquola Hotel, which has been transformed into condominiums with retail space on the first floor. In recent years, a new courthouse was built directly across from the old courthouse which served the county until 1995 and is still used for some government functions.

There have been several developments in downtown over the past decade. Parts of the original brick street were resurfaced on Main Street, and most buildings received new paint jobs. A large new library was built at Society Street and McDuffie Street, and the previous library was remodeled and turned into the county museum. A new farmers market and art gallery were built at Tribble Street next to the old railroad station. There is a new parking garage at the corner of Whitner Street and Murray Avenue and also the recently built Benson Hotel. A number of new projects have been planned for the area, with a new park covering the old Belk site on Whitner Street the newest one, while expansion projects are being considered for the Coleman Recreation Center just outside downtown.

Traffic is regularly closed off Thursday afternoons on Main Street for the downtown block party, and also for different events throughout the year such as the Chili Cook-off and Christmas Parade. While places such as Mellow Mushroom, Wendy's, and Subway operate in downtown, the majority of stores are still more traditional mom-and-pop type stores.

Historic districts

Other historical locations
  • Caldwell-Johnson-Morris Cottage
  • Denver Downs Farmstead
  • Kennedy Street School
  • North Anderson Historic District
  • Dr. Samuel Marshall Orr House
  • Ralph John Ramer House

Parks and recreation

  • Anderson Memorial Stadium — A ballfield/stadium on 12 acres (4.9 ha) of land on White Road. Renovated in 2007 with stadium-style seating. Home to the Anderson University Trojans.
  • Anderson Sports and Entertainment Center — A 300-acre (120 ha) area that includes the Anderson Civic Center, a 37,000 square feet (3,400 m2) facility, as well as one of South Carolina's largest amphitheaters that can accommodate 15,000 people, a huge castle-like play structure with play equipment, a 64-acre (26 ha) sports center with 7 baseball/softball fields, 3 soccer fields, disc golf course, and 8 tennis courts. There is also a lake with park, picnic shelters, and miles of nature trail. The ASCE is Anderson's largest recreational area.
  • Beatrice Thompson Park — A 5-acre (2.0 ha) park with large play structure, picnic shelter, and grill, located on W. Market Street.
  • Cater's Lake — A 7-acre (2.8 ha) park largely consisting of a small lake with lighted aeration fountain. Located along Greenville Street a short distance from downtown and South/North Boulevard.
  • Coleman Recreation Center — 32,000 square feet (3,000 m2) of gym and multipurpose space on 22 acres (8.9 ha) that includes 3 baseball/softball fields, large multipurpose field, and playground. Located at N. Murray Avenue and Roberts Street.
  • D.B. Walker Park — A 4.1-acre (1.7 ha) park that consists of three basketball courts, picnic shelter with grill, and walking trail. The park is across the street from the Jim Ed Rice Center.
  • Darwin Wright Park — A 27-acre (11 ha) park right off Liberty Highway and Manse Jolly Road. Some of the amenities include a 9-hole golf course, play structure, picnic shelters, restrooms, and beach-style swimming.
  • Jim Ed Rice Center — Recreational facility with softball court. Located at E. Market Street and S. Jefferson Avenue.
  • Linley Park — 15-acre (6.1 ha) park located along the center of N. Murray Avenue and North Avenue. The park includes 2 ballfields, restrooms, 2 picnic shelters, swing sets, play structure, and lots of green space.
  • Southwood Park — Part of the Hudgens Athletic Facility. 15 acres (6.1 ha), located at Burdine Road. The park has play equipment, 3 picnic shelters, grills, tennis courts, basketball court, and softball/baseball field.
  • Westside Community Center — Located at 1100 W. Franklin Street, the center offers a police substation, library branch, health clinic, youth programs, rooms for rent, and also a park that includes play equipment, a grill, picnic shelter, walking track, and basketball court.


Anderson's economy revolves around manufacturing. Anderson has over 230 manufacturers, including 22 international companies. In the county, Anderson has a thriving business climate. The top major industries in Anderson include manufacturers of automotive products, metal products, industrial machinery, plastics, publishing, and textiles. Two industries that many times interconnect are the plastic and automotive sectors. There are more than 27 BMW suppliers in the Upstate region, which is recognized internationally as an automotive supplier hub. The plastics industry has a strong presence in the Upstate, with 244 plastic companies located within the 10 counties of the state's northwest corner. Anderson County, in particular, has 11 automotive suppliers and is a major player in the plastic industry, with 27 plastics companies located within its borders. It has one unionized company in the area.


AnMed Health is one of the top employers in the county and the primary healthcare network for Anderson. AnMed Health Medical Center is the main medical facility, offering all the amenities of a standard hospital, as well as a heart and vascular center, and stroke/neurological center. Located two and a half miles north of the facility is the AnMed Health Campus which includes a women's and children's hospital, minor care, cancer center, speech and occupational therapy, and more. The AnMed Rehabilitation Hospital is located between the two facilities. AnMed has recently received national attention being awarded the "National Presidents Circle Award," and the "American College of Cardiology Foundation’s 2012 NCDR ACTION Registry–GWTG Platinum Performance Achievement Award."

In addition to these three network hospitals, AnMed also operates a number of smaller facilities throughout the city and county that range from a free clinic and minor care to doctor's offices.


The city of Anderson is served by the Anderson County School System (specifically, Anderson School District Five). The school district has eleven elementary schools, five middle schools, and two high schools.

Elementary schools:

  • Calhoun Academy of the Arts
  • Centerville Academy of 21st Century Learning
  • Concord Elementary, An International Baccalaureate World School
  • Homeland Park Primary School
  • McLees Academy of Leadership
  • Midway Elementary School of Science and Engineering
  • Nevitt Forest Community School of Innovation
  • New Prospect STEM Academy (Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics)
  • North Pointe Elementary School
  • Varennes Academy of Communications and Technology
  • Whitehall Elementary, A Global Communication School

Middle schools:

  • Lakeside Middle School of Inquiry and Innovation, A STEM School (Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics)
  • McCants Middle School, An International Baccalaureate World Candidate School
  • Southwood Academy of the Arts (will serve grades 6-8 while also having high school students at the school for its Art's classes (dance, chorus, etc.))
  • Robert Anderson Middle School, School of Choice
  • Glenview Middle School, School of Choice

High schools:

  • Westside High School, An Early College Academy
  • T.L Hanna High School, An International Baccalaureate World School
  • Career Campus (Takes in students from both high schools for its related arts classes (cosmetology, robotics, engineering, etc.) Formerly McDuffie High School

Private schools:

  • Anderson Christian School
  • Boulevard Child Enrichment Center
  • Day Star School
  • First Presbyterian Church Day School
  • Grace Kindergarten
  • Montessori School of Anderson
  • Oakwood Christian School
  • New Covenant School
  • St Joseph Catholic School
  • Temple Christian Academy
  • West Anderson Christian Academy

Early Childhood Development Schools:

  • West Market School of Early Education
  • South Fant School of Early Education

Swim Centers

  • YMCA: 201 E. Reed Rd.

Higher education



Anderson is served by Anderson County Regional Airport (IATA: AND, ICAO: KAND). The airport is 3 miles (4.8 km) away from Anderson and has 2 runways; runway 5/23 is 6,000 feet (1,800 m) and runway 17/35 is 5,000 feet (1,500 m). The airport also has helipads. The airport has no control tower but is able to accommodate regional jet aircraft. In addition, the airport has a small terminal.

Roads and highways

Anderson has five signed exits on Greenville to the north.

In 2011, construction began on a new east-west connector which is approximately three miles long between Clemson Boulevard and South Carolina Highway 81.[9] On August 16, 2010, the connector was voted to have four lanes with turn and bike lanes with a completion date set in October 2012.[10]

On November, 8th, 2013, the East-West Parkway formally opened to traffic.

Public transit

Anderson has four bus routes (Blue, Green, Red, and Gold) that travel to most major areas of the city, running every hour.[11] and also receives service from Clemson Area Transit (CATS) via the 4U route.[12] The city uses both newer hybrid buses and older style trolleys resembling Anderson's old streetcars. Inter-city bus travel is available through Greyhound Lines, located on West Whitner Street near downtown.

Though the city still doesn't have as extensive a transit system as more modern cities, it is making plans to expand its ventures. The city is currently trying to acquire a full-time office space for a downtown bus transfer center. There is also the potential for growth in the future, including a new line connecting Belton to Anderson.


Anderson is one of the main shopping destinations in The Upstate. Locally owned stores such as Grady's Great Outdoors and Blake & Brady as well as big box stores occupy Anderson, mainly on Clemson Boulevard. Midtowne Park is a shopping center which opened in 2008 that features Kohl's, Dick's Sporting Goods, Staples, AT&T, Hardee's, and Ulta. This spot has gained significant notoriety online due to the fact that the sign at the main entrance has the stores listed in this order (from top to bottom): Kohl's, Staples, Dick's, and photos have circulated Google and social media sites with the caption "Kohl's does WHAT?"[13][14] Other major shopping centers in Anderson include Anderson Mall, North Pointe Centre, Anderson Station, and two WalMart shopping centers.

The Anderson Jockey Lot is also a well known shopping area located on US 29 about 7.5 miles from the heart of the city. The Jockey Lot is a flea market operating on 65 acres with enough spots inside and out for over 1,500 vendors. It operates on 65 acres of land and is open Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. The Anderson Jockey Lot is said to be the South's biggest flea market and the World's best one.[15] The Jockey Lot has recently come under fire for its apparent role in supporting puppy mills.[16][17]

Anderson Mall

Anderson Mall is Anderson's largest shopping center. It opened in 1972 and has undergone many expansions. It currently has more than 76 specialty stores thanks to a renovation completed in 2008. The mall is owned by Simon Property Group and anchored by Sears, Belk, Dillards, and JC Penney. Dillards recently opened at the mall in the Fall of 2008 as part of the renovation project. The front of the mall was also remodeled with Books-A-Million relocating to this area, along with several other stores.


At the census[19] of 2000, there were 25,514 people, 10,641 households, and 6,299 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,843.7 people per square mile (711.8/km²). There were 12,068 housing units at an average density of 872.1 per square mile (336.7/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 63.12% White, 34.01% African American, 0.22% Native American, 0.78% Asian American, 0.04% Pacific Islander, 0.68% from other races, and 1.16% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.48% of the population.

There were 10,641 households out of which 25.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 36.9% were married couples living together, 18.7% had a female householder with no husband present, and 40.8% were non-families. 36.0% of all households were made up of individuals and 16.3% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.22 and the average family size was 2.89.

In the city the population was spread out with 22.2% under the age of 18, 10.7% from 18 to 24, 26.3% from 25 to 44, 20.4% from 45 to 64, and 20.4% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females there were 82.3 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over there were 77.5 males.

Anderson is the central city of an urbanized area with a total population of 70,530 (2000 census). This urban area is within the larger Greenville-Spartanburg metropolitan statistical area.


Anderson is governed using the mayor-council system. The Mayor is elected at-large. The city council consists of eight members. Six are elected from districts and the other two are elected at large.

Notable residents

Sister cities

Anderson has one sister city, as designated by Sister Cities International:


  1. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2011-06-07. 
  2. ^ "Anderson (city) QuickFacts". Retrieved 2014-06-26. 
  3. ^ "Geographic Identifiers: 2010 Census Summary File 1 (G001): Anderson, SC Urbanized Area (2010)". U.S. Census Bureau, American Factfinder. Retrieved August 7, 2013. 
  4. ^ First Lady of the Skies Historical Marker. Accessed July 21, 2009.
  5. ^ Amelia Earhart drops in, Appalachian History, November 14, 2008. Accessed July 21, 2009.
  6. ^ "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places.  
  7. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990".  
  8. ^ "Geographic Identifiers: 2010 Demographic Profile Data (G001): Anderson city, South Carolina". U.S. Census Bureau, American Factfinder. Retrieved August 7, 2013. 
  9. ^ "News – City of Anderson, SC". Retrieved 2014-06-26. 
  10. ^ Foster, Kisha (2010-08-17). "4-Lanes Approved For East-West Connector | WYFF Home - WYFF Home". Retrieved 2014-06-26. 
  11. ^ [2]
  12. ^ "Clemson Area Transit - Anderson Route". Retrieved 2014-06-26. 
  13. ^ "Kohls Staples Dicks | Tosh.0 Blog". 2010-10-19. Retrieved 2014-06-26. 
  14. ^ "AJ on 97.1 ZHT". Retrieved 2014-06-26. 
  15. ^ "Anderson Jockey Lot Farmers Market,Flea Markets in South Carolina-Selling spaces in Flea Markets and Farmers Market in South Carolina for Fresh produce,Automotive components,Pets,Small farm Animals". Retrieved 2014-06-26. 
  16. ^ "153 dogs found in SC puppy mill, 72-year-old man charged". Retrieved January 9, 2014. 
  17. ^ "Proposed ordinance aimed at putting puppy mills out of business". Retrieved January 9, 2014. 
  18. ^ "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Incorporated Places: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2014". Retrieved June 4, 2015. 
  19. ^ "American FactFinder".  
  20. ^ "Former Hanna QB Preston Jones returns to alma mater as receivers coach". July 19, 2012. Retrieved November 17, 2014. 
  21. ^ Wake, Matt (2010-10-19). "Following the "Dead," Local lands recurring role in AMC’s new zombie series".  
  22. ^ Who Was Who in America, Historical Volume, 1607-1896. Chicago: Marquis Who's Who. 1963. 

External links

  • Official website
  • Anderson County Library
  • Anderson University
  • Anderson Independent, area newspaper
  • Visit Anderson, official tourism information site for Anderson County
  • Anderson County Arts Center
  • Electric City Playhouse
  • Historical Marker Database Anderson, S.C.: The Electric City Historical Marker
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