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What Is Table Rock State Park?

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  • Written By: Marjorie McAtee
  • Edited By: W. Everett
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  • Last Modified Date: 19 September 2016
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Table Rock state park is located in Pickens County, South Carolina, United States, close to the town of Pickens. The land was once considered part of the Cherokee Nation, until the Hopewell Treaty of 1785 ceded it to the United States government. Table Rock state park includes tent and recreational vehicle camping areas, as well as cabins. Boating, fishing, bird watching, hiking, and swimming are some of the activities available to visitors at Table Rock state park. Most of the park's infrastructure was built by the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) in the 1930s, and the park is now included on the National Register of Historic Places and is considered a South Carolina Heritage Trust Site.

The United States National Park Service is credited with supervising the CCC in the creation of Table Rock state park in the 1930s. The project was a large part of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt's New Deal program, which attempted to generate employment during the Great Depression. The CCC worked to improve the nation's parks and recreation facilities.

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Pickens County, South Carolina and the nearby community of Greenville are credited with designating the original parcel of land that would be designated Table Rock state park. This parcel of land consisted of about 2,860 acres (11.6 square kilometers), and it was earmarked in 1935. In 1975 and 1976, Table Rock state park's territory was expanded by an additional 208 acres (0.842 square kilometers). Elizabeth Ellison is credited with giving an additional 15 acres (0.06 square kilometers) to the park in 1991.

Visitors to Table Rock state park can enjoy hiking on Pinnacle Mountain, the largest mountain in the state of South Carolina. The park usually offers several picnic areas, camping areas, and a gift shop. Fishing, boating, and swimming are typically offered on Oolenoy Lake and Pinnacle Lake. Visitors may be able to observe native birds, wildlife, and flora from the park's hiking trails. The park usually offers natural education and a play area for children.

Prior to 1785, Native Americans of the Cherokee tribe inhabited the area, mostly using it for hunting grounds. When the Hopewell Treaty of 1785 was signed, Europeans began to populate the area. They established a community called Pumpkintown, which was known as thriving prior to the American Civil War. It is believed, however, that, by the dawn of the 20th century, the area was mostly inhabited by farmers.

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