Bethune, South Carolina

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Bethune, South Carolina
Location of Bethune, South Carolina
Location of Bethune, South Carolina
Coordinates: 34°24′54″N 80°20′51″W / 34.41500°N 80.34750°W / 34.41500; -80.34750Coordinates: 34°24′54″N 80°20′51″W / 34.41500°N 80.34750°W / 34.41500; -80.34750
Country United States
State South Carolina
County Kershaw
 • Mayor Charles McCoy
 • Total 1.1 sq mi (2.9 km2)
 • Land 1.1 sq mi (2.9 km2)
 • Water 0.0 sq mi (0.0 km2)
Elevation 289 ft (88 m)
Population (2016)
 • Total 345
 • Density 309.4/sq mi (119.5/km2)
Time zone Eastern (EST) (UTC-5)
 • Summer (DST) EDT (UTC-4)
ZIP code 29009
Area code(s) 843
FIPS code 45-06040[1]
GNIS feature ID 1246845[2]

Bethune is a small town in Kershaw County, South Carolina, United States. The population was 345 at the 2016 census. It is part of the Columbia, South Carolina Metropolitan Statistical Area.

A current resident states: "Bethune is a town reminiscent of Mayberry full of friendly people around every corner. There's a hard-wear store, local diner, Dollar General and bank so that everything you need is at arms length. It is a small easygoing town to escape the fast pace life of city living. You usually see one cop car patrolling the streets of town with sirens rarely flashing because it is one of the safest places to live. Larger cities that have ample employment and amenities are just a short 30 minute drive 360 degrees around the town. Kershaw and Pageland, South Carolina have access to grocery stores and safe playgrounds for children are a 15 minute drive away. Larger cities with great employment opportunities, dining variety, and shopping amenities within 30 minutes of town include Camden, Lancaster, Hartsville and Bishopville, South Carolina. Metropolitan cities that are within a 1 hr driving range include Columbia and Florence, South Carolina and Monroe, North Carolina. Bethune is a breath of fresh air and a town that maybe reminiscent of good times past. A very affordable and safe community are what drive many people to move here and the friendly caring people are what make them stay."


Europeans first moved into the area in the early 1800s finding members of the Kadapaw tribe living in the area. Originally, the settlers named the town Lynchwood and, in 1828, they established a post office. After the railroads came to the area, the town was officially chartered in 1900 and the name changed to honor Daniel Murdock Bethune.[3]


Bethune is located at 34°24′54″N 80°20′51″W / 34.41500°N 80.34750°W / 34.41500; -80.34750 (34.414881, -80.347414),[4] near the Kershaw County and Chesterfield County line, 20 miles north of Camden and 15 miles west of Bishopville.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 1.1 square miles (2.8 km2), all land.

Little Lynches River runs through the outskirts of the town.


Historical population
Census Pop.
Est. 2016347[5]3.9%
U.S. Decennial Census[6]

As of the census[1] of 2000, there were 352 people, 165 households, and 104 families residing in the town. The population density was 309.4 people per square mile (119.2/km²). There were 193 housing units at an average density of 169.6 per square mile (65.4/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 89.77% White, 9.66% African American, 0.28% Pacific Islander, 0.28% from other races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.84% of the population.

There were 165 households out of which 21.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 49.7% were married couples living together, 10.9% had a female householder with no husband present, and 36.4% were non-families. 34.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 21.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.13 and the average family size was 2.72.

In the town, the population was spread out with 17.3% under the age of 18, 7.1% from 18 to 24, 22.2% from 25 to 44, 29.8% from 45 to 64, and 23.6% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 47 years. For every 100 females, there were 83.3 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 84.2 males.

The median income for a household in the town was $32,083, and the median income for a family was $40,972. Males had a median income of $37,250 versus $26,406 for females. The per capita income for the town was $18,879. About 5.3% of families and 7.2% of the population were below the poverty line, including 15.5% of those under age 18 and 10.7% of those age 65 or over.


The Bethune Chicken Strut is an annual festival that takes place for three days, every August. The festival includes a parade that takes place down Main Street, a classic car show, carnival rides and live musical performances. The festival began in the early 1970s.

The Bethune Christmas Parade is one of many parades that takes place during the Christmas season in Kershaw County. The parade takes place down Main Street.


  1. ^ a b "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on 2013-09-11. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  2. ^ "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. 2007-10-25. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  3. ^ "Bethune, South Carolina". Retrieved April 30, 2012. 
  4. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23. 
  5. ^ "Population and Housing Unit Estimates". Retrieved June 9, 2017. 
  6. ^ "Census of Population and Housing". Archived from the original on May 12, 2015. Retrieved June 4, 2015.