Colonels Island and Dorchester Village Plantations

Lodebar”, later called “Harts“, a plantation just west of Dorchester, was the home of William Maxwell and his wife, Elizabeth Jones Maxwell. They lived there in 1838, for it was there that Abial Winn and Louisa Vanyeverine Ward were married. Lodebar was the home also of Henry Hart Jones and his wife, Abigal Sturges Dowse, from 1846 to 1856. In 1856 Lodebar was purchased from Henry Hart Jones by Smith Screven Hart. Smith Screven Hart died at Lodebar in 1866, survived by his third wife, Harriet Atwood Newell Hart, who died in Dorchester, August 24, 1883.


Laurel View” was another plantation which was owned by several people. In 1853 Andrew Maybank Jones, because of ill health, retired to Laurel View, which he had inherited. According to the records of Miss Julia King, Laurel View was originally called “Hester’s Bluff” and was a grant to Thomas Maxwell.


Also named in Miss Julia King’s records are many plantations on Colonels Island, which changed ownership many times. One was called “Sulligree“, because people named Sulligree, great fishing people, once lived there. Colonel Audley Maxwell bought Sulligree from Mr. Shadrach Butler of South Carolina. He bought Yellow Bluff from the Bacons and other tracts of land from Colonel White. These tracts adjoined Colonel Audley Maxwell’s grant on Colonels Island.


Another plantation, “Maybank,” was in the same area. Maybank was the home for many years of Andrew Maybank (1768-1834). Andrew Maybank left Maybank and some thirty slaves to the Reverend and Mrs. Charles C. Jones. It was across the river from Montevideo and was well loved by them. Maybank was much later bought from the heirs of C. C. Jones by Mr. George Brown.


The Maxwell plantation was called “Maxwellton.” Miss Julia King’s father, James Audley Maxwell King, gave her the land south of Colonels Island causeway and called “Kings Land“, and it included Hickory Hill.


Colonel Joseph Law had a summer home on Half Moon Bluff, not far from the Kings’ Bird Refuge. Roswell King, grandfather of Miss Julia King, bought the Law place on Half Moon from the heirs of Colonel Joseph Law. It was called, simply, “Laws.” This same Roswell King built a big beautiful house at quite a distance from the river and he named it “Woodville.” This place, according to Miss Julia King, was known far and wide for its beauty and hospitality. Roses, flowering shrubs, trees, fruit trees and grape arbors were there. She says, “Storms and hurri­canes and forest fires, and time have all done their worst! The last time I saw Woodville it was a pathless wilderness.”


Another plantation was called “Mellon Bluff.” It was west of Half Moon. It was the plantation of Joseph Austin and was so named because of big melons grown there.


North of Colonels Island was a plantation called “Cedar Point” or “The Dunham Place”. It was in lower Liberty County near Springfield. Here lived Thomas J. Dunham and his wife, Anne Harris Dunham.


The Stevens plantation, “Palmyra” was next to Springfield. It was the plantation of John Stevens (1777-1832) and his wife, Aramintha Munro. Here were born many of the John Stevens children; John Stevens (1804-1877), Henry Munro Stevens (1808-1888), James Dana Stevens (1810-1845), Harriet Elizabeth Stevens (1811- 1887), Joseph Law Stevens (1814-1862), Mary Anna Stevens (1817-1885) and William Crawford Stevens (1820-1887).


Colonel John Baker once lived at Springfield Plantation. It was also at one time owned by John Elliott Ward, according to a deed in the collection of Alice Waite Winn. The deed from Louisa Vanyeverine Ward Winn who was a sister of John E. Ward and whose power of attorney is also in Alice Winn’s collection, reads, “Louisa V. Winn to Josiah L. Fleming and Frank W. Law.” “Springfield Place” consisted of 175 acres, more or less bounded by lands of Wm. S. Norman and O. W. Stevens on the north, east by lands of Mary A. Fleming, on south by lands of T. J. Dunham and on the west by lands of Wm. S. Norman. This deed was dated 1882. On January 25, 1884, Frank W. Law sold his share to Josiah L. Fleming.


The Winn Plantation was between Riceboro and Dorchester. Peacock Creek was one of its boundaries. It was owned by Abial Winn, later by John Ward Winn, and later by J. W. Winn’s widow who married 2nd Abial Winn who planted it and lived there in the winter, moving to the Winn house in Dorchester in the summers. There were many other plantations, but space does not permit naming them all.