The old Sheldon Church, in northern Beaufort County, South Carolina doesn’t have much luck when it comes war. The proper name for this venerable set of old ruins is Prince William’s Parish Church. With a name like that, one would think it would give faithful service. This seemed not to be the case however, as the British burned it in 1779 during the American Revolution.
The Greek Revival style church was originally built in 1757, by the owner of the adjacent Newberry Plantation, William Bull, who lies buried in the ruins. Following the burning by the British, it was rebuilt in 1826 using the existing walls which refused to fall in the conflagration.
Then about a century later, the Civil War comes along and it stood in General Sherman’s way on his famous march to the sea, and according to legend, laid waste once more. However, in The Leverett Letters, a note written by Milton Leverett claimed in 1866 that the church was never burnt, merely gutted by locals searching for materials to rebuild their own homes.
Either way, the walls of Old Sheldon Church ruins are still standing, more than 250 years after it was built. A tranquil place to sit on your visit to South Carolina’s lowcountry.