South Carolina: Florence County

Florence County (pop. 136,885) is west of Marion County. The only other Florence County is in Wisconsin.

The county seat is the city of Florence (pop. 37,056). It’s the eastern terminus of Interstate 20 (going west to Texas) and is about halfway between New York City and Miami on Interstate 95.

653 miles to Miami, 624 miles to New York City

The central library for Florence County is the Doctors Bruce and Lee Foundation Library in Florence; it was built in 2004 for a cost of $13.5 million.

It has the largest children’s library in the state.

Francis Marion University is about six miles east of Florence. The public university has about 4,000 students.

Established in 1970

The city of Timmonsville (pop. 2,320), birthplace of auto racer Cale Yarborough, has a large Honda plant that produces all-terrain vehicles.

The plant’s 2.5-millionth ATV, in 2012

The city of Lake City (pop. 6,478) was the hometown of Ronald McNair, one of the seven astronauts who died on the Space Shuttle Challenger in 1986.

He had a Ph.D. in physics from MIT.

Mars Bluff, an unincorporated area east of Florence, was accidentally bombed with a nuclear weapon by a U.S. Air Force B-47  in 1958. About 7,600 pounds of conventional explosives exploded, destroying one home and creating a 30-foot-deep crater.

The fissionable uranium and plutonium were not in the Mark 6 bomb at the time.

NEXT: CLARENDON COUNTY

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One comment on “South Carolina: Florence County

  1. Gina Sorani Kuntz says:

    How does one “accidentally” drop a nuclear bomb?!! Good thing it wasn’t loaded.

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