The Historic Camden Foundation is a private 501(c)3 non-profit museum whose mission is to protect, preserve, and celebrate Camden’s extraordinary Colonial and Revolutionary War history.
Our 107 acres sit atop the original 18th-century property of the city’s founder Joseph Kershaw and the fortified Revolutionary War-era town occupied by British General Cornwallis and Lord Rawdon’s men from 1780-81. Visit the site to learn about the prolific Kershaw, Camden’s importance to the war’s Southern Campaigns, and Colonial life in the backcountry. Explore the reconstructed Kershaw-Cornwallis House and recently rehabilitated c. 1800 McCaa’s Tavern, as well as exhibits in other period structures. Join us for tours, programs, and events! See our Admission & Tours page and our events calendar to plan your trip.
Camden Battlefield and Longleaf Pine Preserve
Historic Camden is excited to announce that we have recently assumed ownership of 476 acres of the Battlefield of Camden. The Battlefield is hallowed ground for the hundreds of men who died in this significant battle that took place August 16, 1780. Historic Camden is dedicated to telling the story of this fascinating battle, preserving and studying the archaeological evidence of the site, restoring the Longleaf Pine forest that existed during the 18th century, and providing a space for a variety of outdoor recreational activities. Visit the Camden Battlefield page for more information!
Both the original Historic Camden campus and the Battlefield are on the National Register of Historic Places. Historic Camden is a National Park Service affiliate.
HISTORIC CAMDEN NEWS
- Historic Camden is proud to partner with the City of Camden, Kershaw County, Central Carolina Technical College, and others for the upcoming Visitors Center and Revolutionary War center next door to our site! Read more about it here.
- We received a $200,000 grant from the SC Dept. of Parks, Recreation, and Tourism towards deferred maintenance work and renovations for our historic structures. Stay tuned for updates!
- Want to make your next event a BLAST? We now have two 3-pound grasshopper cannons, two Coehorn mortars, muskets, and a uniformed cannon crew who can travel to your site to demonstrate, educate, and entertain. See our Cannon page for more info.
- The March 23, 2019 Revel grossed a record $50,000 to support our mission! Thank you to all of our donors and sponsors.
- Our renovated Southeast Redoubt exhibit was unveiled on March 9, 2019! Read more about our supporters and all the hard work our volunteers did here and here.
- Our wonderful volunteers at the Camden Battlefield and Longleaf Pine Preserve completed 18 months of hand-clearing non-longleaf trees that was mixed with young longleaf in our "Educational Acres". Stop by the Battlefield Preserve to see the start of our decades-long reforestation efforts to bring the forest back to its 18th century roots, and follow the project on Facebook.
We are happy to introduce to you our new blog, which will discuss a variety of topics and helps us usher into a new era as we celebrate fifty years of preservation, education and celebration.
For fifty years Historic Camden has played a vital role in preserving Kershaw County’s storied history. Our journey began in 1966 when the Kershaw County Chamber of Commerce, along with a group of local residents, proposed a new initiative. That initiative, along with seed money given by Richard and Margaret Lloyd, helped to establish what would become the Historic Camden Foundation. On the first weekend of November, in 1970, Historic Camden opened its doors to visitors. That very same weekend marked the first annual Revolutionary War Field Days, a reenactment held each year since. Historic Camden was one of the first major preservation projects for the county, helping to pave the way for future efforts as well.
While five decades may have passed, one thing that has remained true is Historic Camden’s steadfast dedication to its mission statement: to protect, preserve and celebrate Camden’s extraordinary Colonial and Revolutionary War history. Historic Camden is a proud member of the community, but we are always working to expand our audience. Each year we receive visitors from not just Camden, but all throughout the United States as well as countries around the world. As part of our mission, we place a great deal of our focus on three key areas: preservation, education and events. Our preservation efforts include things such as maintaining/restoration of our buildings, collections and the Camden Battlefield and Longleaf Pine Preserve. In terms of education, we offer guided tours, lectures, school tours and our annual History Days program. Events are a regular occurrence and come in a variety of forms including Treaty of Ghent, Revel, Haunts and Spirits and Revolutionary War Field Days. As a private, non-profit organization we also look to some of our events as fundraisers. This helps us to continue with our preservation and education efforts and provide visitors with opportunities to gain their very own experiences.
Historic Camden is a community staple, and we like to maintain an open invitation mentality, so that each of you have the opportunity to get involved. Whether you choose to volunteer, become a member, take a tour or make a donation, your support is crucial and always appreciated. Historic Camden is ever-growing with our established efforts and new opportunities on the horizon. With the arrival of 2020 we begin a year of celebration 50 years in the making, and we’re happy to invite you all to celebrate with us!
By Lance Player
Historic Camden staff member