Historic Markers Across South Carolina

Mount Bethel Academy

Marker ID: SCHM 36-11
Location: US 176, about 0.7 mile NW of Browns Cross­roads
County: Newberry
Coordinates: N 34° 22.5    W 081° 32.233
  34.375    -81.53721666
Style: Free Standing **


Located about one mile northeast on land conveyed by Edward Finch, this school, the first Methodist educational venture in the state, was established by Bishop Francis Asbury and opened by him, 1795. A number of Mt. Bethel students became the first S. C. College graduates. The first Methodist conference in S. C. outside Charleston met here at Finch´s house in 1793.

Mount Bethel Academy Among the leading citizens who attended this school, which opened 1795 and closed ca.1820, was William Harper, United States senator and judge. William Harper was the son of John Harper, who, in 1803, founded Washington Street United Methodist Church in Columbia and is buried in the cemetery near the Mount Bethel school site

Erected by Washington Street United Methodist Church, Columbia - 1987