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In  1868, African Americans from all over Beaufort District voted in the first election since Emancipation and the close of the Civil War.  What resulted was the election of African Americans in almost every section of South Carolina and even moreso the sweep of the Post Civil War Republican Party in the state.  Beaufort's leading Post Civil War Republican was a man by the name of Robert Smalls who would peddle his respect and influence creating Beaufort into what was then known as, " Negro Paradise." Where elected officials and business owners were all African Americans.  From the Civil War on, during this time many famous Americans called Beaufort home Harriet Tubman, Clara Barton, Johnathan Jasper Wright, Laura Towne, Charlotte Forten, William Henry Brisbane, Thomas Wentworth Higginson, Frances Rollins Whipper, and Rufus Saxton.   Well known visitors include: President Ulysses S. Grant, General William Tecumseh Sherman and Martin R. Delany to name a few.

The Election of 1868

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