What happened to the Fort Hill Mansion in Pendleton, South Carolina

Jeannette Holland Austin
2 min readAug 4, 2022
Fort Hill part of Clemson University

James McElhenny, the Pastor of Hopewell Presbyterian Church, built a four-room home in Pendleton ca 1803 and called it “Clergy Hall.” Later, it was owned by Mr. John C. Calhoun who enlarged it to contain fourteen rooms and renamed it “ Fort Hill.”

After the death of Calhoun in 1850, the property was passed to his wife to be shared with three of her children: Cornelia, John, and Anna Maria, wife of Thomas Green Clemson. Anna sold her share to Floride Calhoun.

Floride Calhoun sold the plantation to her son, Andrew Pickens Calhoun who held the mortgage. There was a legal proceeding against Andrew Pickens Calhoun who died in 1865 and Anna filed for foreclosure against the heirs of Andrew prior to her death in 1866.

After lengthy legal proceedings, the plantation was auctioned at Walhalla in 1872.

The executor of the estate of Anna Calhoun won at auction, which was divided among her surviving heirs. Her daughter, Anna Clemson, received the residence with about 814 acres and remained in the house until about 1875 when she died.

Thomas Green Clemson inherited “Fort Hill” and his last will and testament (dated 1888) bequeathed more than 814 acres of the estate to the State of South Carolina for an agricultural college with the proviso…