Michael has a BA in History & American Studies and an MSc in American History from the University of Edinburgh. He comes from a proud military family and has spent most of his career as an educator in the Middle East and Asia. His passion is travel, and he seizes any opportunity to share his experiences in the most immersive way possible, whether at sea or on the land.

Part of our in-depth series exploring Southern Early American Forts

Picture of Fort Ninety Six

The Ninety Six National Historic Site is an area of unique historical significance. The unusual name was given by early traders in the 1700s because they mistakenly believed it was the estimated number of miles to the Cherokee village of Keowee in the upper South Carolina foothills.

By the mid-1700s, European colonists found it a favorable place to settle. During Ninety Six's early days, troubles with local Indians increased. In 1760, Cherokees twice attacked Fort Ninety Six, built for the settlers' protection. By the early 1700s, Ninety Six village reached its peak with a growing population, 12 houses and a newly- constructed courthouse and jail.

Ninety Six also figured prominently in the Southern Campaign of the American Revolution. The first land battle south of New England was fought here in 1775 and in 1780, the British fortified the strategically important frontier town. From May 22 - June 18, 1781; Major General Nathanael Greene with 1,000 patriot troops staged the longest (yet unsuccessful) siege of the Revolutionary War against 550 loyalists who were defending Ninety Six. The park site covers 989.14 acres.

Operating Hours & Seasons

Ninety Six National Historic Site is open daily from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. The park is closed on Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day and New Year's Day. Gate closes promptly at 5 p.m., but if visitors park outside the gate they are allowed to stay until sunset.

Public Transportation

None available

Getting Around

A self guided 1 mile interpretative walking trail winds its way through the battlefields and town site of 96. The trail begins and ends at the parking lot. Horses, bikes, skateboards, etc are not allowed on the trail. An historic cabin is located near the parking lot. Trail is handicap accessible.

Communities and Related Links
National Park Service Web Site
Columbia, SC
Augusta, GA

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