Discover South Carolina History at Andrew Jackson State Park

By:Page Ivey


As a teenager, Andrew Jackson was scarred for life for refusing to clean the boots of an officer in the army that had captured him while he was defending his homeland. By the end of the war, he had lost two brothers and was an orphan. Fifty years later, he was the top official in his young country after a distinguished military career.

You can learn all about the story of the seventh president of the United States at Andrew Jackson State Park in Lancaster, South Carolina.

Jackson is the only South Carolina native elected president of the United States. Though there is some debate between the two Carolinas about which side of the line he was actually born on, Jackson himself claimed to be born in South Carolina.

Jackson was just 9 years old when the Declaration of Independence was signed. During the later years of the Revolutionary War, Jackson served as a courier for the local militia. That was how he and his brother were captured by British forces in the Waxhaw area of the state. It is here, the story goes, that Jackson was struck in the head with a saber after he refused to shine the boots of a British officer.

Jackson and his brother were later released, but his brother died soon after. Another brother was killed in the Battle of Stono Ferry, and Jackson’s mother died near the end of the war. (Jackson’s father had passed away just weeks before Jackson was born in March 1767.)

He lived with his uncle, on whose property he had been born and raised, and by 20 years old was a lawyer and moved to what would become Tennessee, winning the new state’s first seat in Congress.

Jackson gained national fame during the War of 1812, when he took on the British again as a major general and led his troops to victory at the Battle of New Orleans. He rode that popularity to the White House, becoming the seventh president of the U.S. in 1829.

Jackson was considered a man of the people and a defender of the little guy, breaking up the Second Bank of the United States. But he also took on his home state and threatened to send troops to enforce federal law when his former vice president and fellow South Carolinian John C. Calhoun supported a nullification battle to protest high tariffs. South Carolina backed down, and Jackson preserved the Union (for the time being).

He served two terms as president before retiring to Tennessee, where he died in 1845.

Andrew Jackson State Park includes a museum detailing the young Jackson’s life in the Carolina backcountry. Though the original buildings are long gone, a replica of an 18th-century schoolhouse shows what life would have been like in this primitive area around the time of the American Revolution.

Living history events are held throughout the year to depict life during the Revolution, and the park celebrates Jackson’s birthday each March. Artist Anna Hyatt Huntington’s statue immortalizing the young Jackson on horseback is at the park, which offers many of the typical recreational opportunities – camping, fishing, boating (non-motorized boats only) and nature trails for hiking as well as prime bird watching spots around the lake. In autumn, the endangered Schweinitz's sunflower can be seen in full bloom.

Other facilities include a playground, picnic shelters, horseshoe pits and volleyball equipment.


Andrew Jackson State Park, 196 Andrew Jackson Park Road, Lancaster, (803) 285-3344.

Open 8 a.m.-6 p.m. seven days a week Nov. 1-March 31; 9 a.m.-9 p.m. April 1-Oct. 31. The museum is open 1-5 p.m. Saturday-Sunday or during the week by appointment. The schoolhouse is open 1-5 p.m. Saturday and 2-5 p.m. Sunday from mid-March to November. $2 adults; $1.25 South Carolina seniors; free for children 15 and younger.

Related Content

Explore the Museum of York County
Visit the Museum of York County to discover over 1,000 of famous Rock Hill native Vernon Grant's illustrations, scrapbooks, sketches and studio furniture.
Chester's History
The quiet town of Chester is a history buff’s dream - from Monument Square, “the heart of the city,” at the top of the Hill to the business district down in the Valley. Most of the structures downtown were built between 1870 and 1900.
7 Revolutionary War Sites in South Carolina’s Olde English District
South Carolina saw lots of action in the Revolutionary War, and you can trace the path of British and Patriot troops in our Olde English District. From battlefields to working plantations, it’s a must-see for history lovers.
Explore Historic Sites Along SC’s Cherokee Foothills Scenic Highway
The Cherokee Foothills Scenic Highway runs 115 miles along the southern edge of the Blue Ridge Mountains from Georgia to North Carolina. With some of the most scenic views of South Carolina’s rolling hills, the highway is full of historic sites.

Featured Products

City of Lancaster




Midlands Region

Learn More
The City of Lancaster, the county seat for Lancaster County, is located southeast of Charlotte, NC. Originally inhabited by the Catawba and Waxhaw Indian nations, the are ...
Andrew Jackson State Park




Midlands Region

Learn More
Andrew Jackson State Park combines history, art and community activities into a setting that has made it one of the S.C. State Park Service’s most popular attractions. ...

Featured products and attractions in "Discover South Carolina History at Andrew Jackson State Park"

Nearby Attractions

  • {{}}