Michael Gaffney was born in Ireland and came to the United States in 1797. He departed New York City for Charleston then headed inland. He married Mary "Polly" Smith and in 1804 bought some land and built a home, store, and trading post at what became known as Gaffney's Corners. Thus began the town of Gaffney. The cabin has been restored with period furniture and is now open for public tours.
There are three entire historic districts in Gaffney along with several individual places that are listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Buildings of historical and/or architectural interest abound. There are also two National Historic Parks/Battlefields relating to the Revolutionary War nearby.
There is a nice memorial to the veterans from Cherokee County who paid the ultimate price while serving their country in the nation's wars. I feel it is important to remember the contributions the nation's military have made to the our freedom and way of life.
This is one of 14 libraries built in South Carolina using money donated by industrialist Andrew Carngie. This one was built in 1914 using the Classical Revival style of architecture. It served as a library until 1972 and now houses county offices. The library is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Gaffney is located in Northern South Carolina near the border with North Carolina. It is the county seat of Cherokee County and has a population of over 12,000. Gaffney was established when Michael Gaffney moved to the area in 1804 and established a lodge and tavern by a major crossroads. Gaffney became the county seat in 1897. The Cherokee County Courthouse looks fairly nice but the Gaffney City Hall (photo 2) is better.
the battle of cowpens was fought in january 1781 during the american revolutionary war. this battle was part of the southern campaign between the armies of british general cornwallis and continental general greene. on january 17 the 1781 the forces of british general banastre tarleton attacked the forces of general daniel morgan. after a one hour battle the british were routed. the battle of cowpens was a decivisive american victory during the revolutionary war. for those interested in american history the battle of cowpens historic park is worth visiting in the gaffney area.
the carnegie library was built in 1916 by steel magnate andrew carnegie. andrew canegie funded the construction of 2,811 libraries in the united states and europe in the early 20 th century. today the carnegie is the cherokee county administration building. the carnegie library is listed on the national register of historic places.
the cherokee county courthouse is located next the administration building (old carnegie library) in downtown gaffney. i could not find any architectural information of this structure but it's design is stripped classical and i would quess it was built in the early to mid 20 the century.
pictured is the historic gaffney cabin located across the street from the gaffney visitor center. michael gaffney moved to smith ford in 1800. he bought 805 acres of land and built this cabin, a store, and a tavern. after the constuction of these buildings smith ford was known as gaffney's cross roads.
I don't think there is a lot to do in Gaffney. In all fairness I have not given Gaffney much thought or research. I remember that my college roommate back in the 1970's came from Gaffney, South Carolina. And I know that 30 years later my daughter and learned to stop and eat in Gaffney, South Carolina. Here is Danielle learning why the restaurant is called FATZ. If you were to dine here on a regular basis you would become very FATZ.
I'll never be able to read James and the Giant Peach again without visualizing Gaffney's Peachoid; a one million gallon water tower monstrosity. Visible from I-84, the Peachoid resembles a giant orange butt- even bigger than mine!
The Peochoid boldly proclaims to passerby, "Our peaches are the BEST, F- Georgia!!"
You simply can't pass through Gaffney without stopping to take pictures at the Peachoid.
A few blocks down the slight hill (possibly south??) on Limestone, you'll find this impressive church. Looking down Limestone, you'll see a few church spires which would make for a good photo in the right light.
At the corner of Frederick and Limestone (on the corner with Elmore's Barbershop), you'll see this historical marker that honors one of Gaffney's prominent 19th century citizens, A. N. Wood and his wife. Wood was a banker among other things and built many buildings in Gaffney as well as being a well-known philanthropist. Personally, I've never heard of him, but hey, he's got a plaque on a building, so I owed him the respect of at least reading it.
The main thoroughfare of Gaffney as far as I could tell was Limestone with the major intersection located at E. Frederick and Limestone. There is free two hour parking on the street, so I decided to get out and walk around the town. That took me about 4 1/2 minutes and everything appeared to be either closed or just plain sloooooow . . . That's small town South Carolina for you!
As you can see from this picture, Gaffney does have some welcoming signs and a Kimbrells Department store on the corner of Frederick and Limestone.
When traveling down Interstate 85 through Gaffney you must see the giant peach. It is really a water tower but has been painted to look like a peach. They raise peaches in the county so this is one way to advertise it. They also have a peach festival there.