Island, South Carolina, located 70 miles north of Charleston
and 25 miles south of Myrtle Beach, is known as one of the oldest
summer resorts on the East Coast.
families of rice planters who owned plantations on the nearby
rivers first settled Pawleys Island in the early 1700's. The
planters knew that it was unhealthy for their families to remain
on the rivers during the summer and that the seashore was much
healthier. Even though they didn't know about malaria in the
1700's, they knew enough to get away! They moved their families,
horses, cows, bedding, provisions and furniture to Pawleys in
May of each year, where they remained until the first frost
this leisurely existence has developed the charm of Pawleys
that still remains. Also still remaining are 12 residences in
the historic district, which date from the late 1700's to the
mid 1800's. Pawleys continues to be known for its shoeless,
carefree, laid-back life style, which includes crabbing in the
adjacent creeks, fishing, the stories of ghosts, the rope hammocks
and the unspoiled, unsophisticated, casual, delightful stretch
of wide beach and sand dunes.
Civil War and several major hurricanes have changed the face
of the island but it still retains the nickname "arrogantly
shabby." Pawleys is an island of simple virtues and lack
our historic district you will see a number of signs with a
brief history of the antebellum homes. As you traverse our island
you will note the variety of shapes and sizes of our beach houses,
most of which are available for summer rental.
is heard the quote "we like the kind of people who like
Pawleys" and among these people is a special feeling of
Island is a barrier island less than 4 miles long and mostly
1 house wide, separated from the mainland by a beautiful salt
marsh and accessible by two short causeways. Generations of
visitors have returned with the feeling that "their blood
pressure goes down when they cross the causeway."
earliest known inhabitants of the area were Waccamaw and Winyah
Indians. They called the area "Chicora," meaning "the
land," and the term is frequently used by local businesses.
European colonization, George Pawley was an early settler, giving
his name to the community. The breezy island quickly became
a refuge from the mosquitoes that were notable during the summer.
With African slaves that were brought to the area came malaria,
so those of means would move to summer cottages on the island
to avoid the mosquito-vectored malaria and other sicknesses.
1791, two years after he was elected president, George Washington
toured the Grand Strand. He passed right down The King's Highway
in the unincorporated portion of Pawleys Island to visit the
Alstons, who were wealthy plantation owners just to the south.
Rice plantations occupied the Waccamaw River side of the neck.