The area now known as Barnwell County initially existed within the Orangeburg District before becoming Winton County. In 1800 the county changed its name to honor John Barnwell, who was known for his service in the Revolutionary War. The town of Barnwell serves as the county seat.
The history of South Carolina’s railroads has had a strong impact on the history of Bamberg County. Two of the county’s towns, Williston and Blackville, resulted from the construction of the South Carolina Railroad. The county became smaller in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, with several pieces of the county breaking off to form Allendale, Aiken, and Bamberg counties.
Barnwell County History. Accessed June 01, 2016.