The City of Gaffney is the seat of Cherokee County, which proudly boasts that “freedom was won here” and “freedom still lives here.” The county includes three national parks which commemorate the actions of Patriot forces who fought for independence from British rule.
The Overmountain Victory National Historic Trail
Right here in Cherokee County is the final portion of the 330 mile trail, which hundreds of frontier militiamen traveled in 1780 across the Appalachian mountains to join up with Patriot forces in South Carolina. Free, illustrated maps of the Overmountain Victory National Historic Trail are available from the Gaffney Visitors Center at 210 West Frederick Street.
Cowpens National Battlefield
Travel along the Cherokee Foothills Scenic Highway (S.C. Hwy.11) from Gaffney to the Cowpens National Battlefield, where on January 18, 1781, Daniel Morgan led an army of frontier militia and Continentals to a brilliant victory over the much larger force of British regulars commanded by Banastre Tarleton. The battlefield, managed by the National Park service, includes a monument to the men who fought in the battle and an excellent visitors center which provides informational programming. Expert guided battlefield tours are available throughout the day. Each year on the weekend closest to January 17, the park celebrates the anniversary of the battle with firing demonstrations and a living history encampment. On the weekend closest to Independence Day, fireworks and other activities are free and open to the public. See the website for hours of operation and schedule of special events.
Kings Mountain National Military Park
Follow the Overmountain Victory Trail through historic downtown Gaffney to the site of the battle that Thomas Jefferson described as “The turn of the tide of success.” There, on October 7, 1780, the Patriots won a decisive victory over loyalist forces. The park includes a monument, visitors center and amphitheater. Special informational programs and commemorative events are offered at various times of the year. See the website for hours of operation and schedule of events.
Historic Sites Within the City of Gaffney
Within the City of Gaffney, are three districts that are included on the National Register of Historic Places. The City of Gaffney invites everyone to explore our history. Continue Getting into Gaffney’s history as you explore the historic downtown area with visits to the Michael Gaffney Log Home, the City Hall Park with its historic water fountain, and the new Gaffney City Hall ringing the sounds of the bell suspended in the clock tower of the original City Hall constructed in the late 1800’s. Upon departure from the Historic Commercial District, stroll through the streets of Gaffney’s Historic Residential District, with homes constructed between 1890 and 1930, generally of frame or brick construction with fine examples of Queen Anne, Colonial Revival, Neo-Classical, Victorian, and Bungalow styles. Located on College Drive, nestled in the historic residential district, you’ll want to enrich your historic exploration with a visit to the Cherokee History Museum. The Residential Historic District will lead you to the beautiful Limestone Springs Historic District which encompasses much of the Limestone College campus, Nesbitt’s Quarry (locally referred to as the Limestone Quarry), and the Limestone Springs Baptist Church.