SPARTANBURG, a city and the county-seat of Spartanburg county, South Carolina, U.S.A., about 94 m. N.W. of Columbia. Pop. (1890), 5544; (1900), 11,395, of whom 4269 were negroes; (1906, estimate), 14,905. Spartanburg is served by the Southern, the Charleston & Western Carolina (controlled by the Atlantic Coast line), the Glenn Springs, the Carolina, Clinchfield & Ohio, and inter-urban (electric) railways. It is a thriving city in a cotton-growing and cotton-manufacturing region, about 800 ft. above the sea and 25 m. S.E. of the Blue Ridge. Spartanburg is the seat of Wofford College (Methodist Episcopal, South; founded in 1850 with a bequest of Benjamin Wofford, a local Methodist minister, and opened in 1854), which had, in 1908, 12 instructors and 286 students; also of Converse College (nonsectarian; for women), which was founded by D. E. Converse in 1889, opened in 1890, and in 1908 had 22 instructors and 355 students. An annual musical festival is held here under the auspices of the Converse College Choral Society. Four miles south of the city, at Cedar Spring, is the South Carolina Institution for the Education of the Deaf and Blind, founded as a private institution in 1849 and taken over by the state in 1857. There are gold-mines near the city; and Spartanburg county produces large crops of cotton. Cotton mills are the basis of the city's prosperity, and it has also a large wholesale trade, iron-working establishments, and various manufactures. The value of its factory product was $2,127,702 in 1905, or 33-7% more than in 1900. Spartanburg was founded in 1787, and, although railway communication with Columbia and Charleston was opened in 1859, there was little growth until the establishment of the first cotton mill in the vicinity in 1880; it was chartered as a city in this year.
Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)