The land of present-day Greenville was once the hunting ground of the Cherokee, which was forbidden to colonists. A wealthy settler from Virginia named Richard Pearis arrived in South Carolina around 1754 and established relations with the Cherokee. Pearis had a child with a Cherokee woman and received about 100,000 acres (40,000 ha) from the Cherokee around 1770. Pearis established a plantation on the Reedy River called the Great Plains in present-day downtown Greenville. The American Revolution divided the South Carolina country between the Loyalists and Patriots. Pearis supported the Loyalists and together with their allies, the Cherokee. After the Cherokee attacked the Patriots, the Patriots retaliated by burning down Pearis’ plantation and jailing him in Charleston. Pearis never returned to his plantation but Paris Mountain is named after him. The Treaty of Dewitt’s Corner in 1777 ceded almost all Cherokee land, including present-day Greenville, to South Carolina.
Greenville County was created in 1786. Some sources state it was named for its physical appearance, while others say the county is named after General Nathanael Greene in honor of his service in the American Revolutionary War.Lemuel J. Alston came to Greenville County in 1788 and bought 400 acres (160 ha) and a portion of Pearis’ former plantation. In 1797 Alston used his land holdings to establish a village called Pleasantburg where he also built a stately mansion. In 1816, Alston’s land was purchased by Vardry McBee, who then leased the Alston mansion for a summer resort, before making the mansion his home from 1835 until his death in 1864. Considered to be the father of Greenville, McBee donated land for many structures such as churches, academies, and a cotton mill. Furman University was funded by McBee who helped bring the university to Greenville from Winnsboro, South Carolina in 1851. In 1853 McBee and other Greenville County leaders funded a new railroad called the Greenville and Columbia Railroad. Greenville boomed to around 1,000 in the 1850s due to the growth of McBee’s donations and the attraction of the town as a summer resort for visitors. In 1831 Pleasantburg was incorporated as Greenville.
In 2022, the firm opened an office in downtown Greenville due to the growth and continued opportunity in the region. Greenville County is the most populated county in the State of South Carolina and is now home to 650+ manufacturers, 40 Fortune 500 companies, and 150 headquarters.
Nestled up against the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains in the heart of South Carolina’s Upcountry, you’ll find Greenville situated just about halfway between Charlotte, North Carolina and Atlanta, Georgia. Greenville’s friendly, thriving downtown pulses with things to do year-round. From one-of-a-kind shops, boutiques and art galleries to museums, tours and outdoor activities, Greenville is a welcoming retreat for visitors of every age and explorers of every type.
No matter where you travel throughout Greenville and the Upstate, you’ll discover that this is a place—a city, county and region—where restoration and growth dovetail with Southern traditions, American history, and abundant natural attractions.
My two main inspirations for becoming an environmental engineer are my family and a passion for improving quality of life for others. My grandfather and aunt are both engineers…