Fort Mitchel and Mitchelville
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There’s not much left of the old Union encampment at Fort Mitchel, nor of the freedmen community, Mitchelville, which grew up alongside it. You can see the earthworks, a couple of cannon, and a historical marker on the grounds of the Hilton Head Plantation, a gated development. Tell the security guard you’d like to see Fort Mitchel.
Once inside Hilton Head Plantation, take a left onto Seabrook Drive and then a right onto Skull Creek Drive. Fort Mitchel is a short ways ahead on your left. It’s not a well-maintained site, but it’s an important part of local history.
At the intersection of Bay Gall and Beach City Roads is a marker for the site of Mitchelville, founded in 1862 as the first freedman settlement in the U.S. Also on Beach City Road is a fenced-in area with what’s left of Fort Howell, a Union encampment built by African American troops.
© Jim Morekis from Moon South Carolina, 4th Edition