Melrose Plantation - Fairfield County South Carolina SC

Melrose Plantation – Longtown – Fairfield County

Basic Information


  • ? – Earliest known date of existence

  • ? – House built

    A grand house was built by Nicholas Adamson Peay (1, p. 233).

    The Peay family lived in Fairfield County for several generations. Nicholas Adamson Peay's father Austin Ford Peay owned Flint Hill Plantation and grandfather Nicholas Peay founded Malvern Hall Plantation (1, pp. 232-233).

  • 1865 – Sherman's troops looted the plantation, set ablaze the house and all the fields (1, p. 233) (2, p. 150).


  • Number of acres – ?

  • Primary crop – Cotton (2, p. 150)


  • Number of slaves – Nick Peay at one point owned 19 plantations with about 1,000 slaves among them (2, p. 147)

    Ex-slave Rosa Starke was interviewed in 1937 about her life as a slave. She was moved to Melrose Plantation as a young child with her parents and spoke of the grander of the house, the large and well stocked smoke house and cellar, and the classes of slaves. When an inventory of the Peay estate was made, Rosa's father (who was half white) was valued at $1,880, her mother $1,600 and young Rosa was valued at $400. Although she was freed after the Civil War, Rosa remained with the Peay family until she married (2, pp. 147-150)


  • The house constructed at Melrose Plantation was known as the grandest in upper South Carolina. Said to have had 30 rooms, the house was constructed with brick, stone and marble with granite gate posts (1, p. 233).

References & Resources

  1. Claude Henry Neuffer, editor, Names in South Carolina, Volume I through 30 (Columbia, SC: The State Printing Company)
     Order Names in South Carolina, Volumes I-XII, 1954-1965
     Order Names in South Carolina, Index XIII-XVIII

  2. Information contributed by Dr. Brian Kelly from:
    WPA Slave Narratives - interview with ex-slave Rosa Starke at the age of 83

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