A History of Walhalla, South Carolina

Oconee County Court House - Walhalla, SC (2008)

On March 8,1850, the town was named Walhalla. The word is borrowed from Scandinavian mythology and signifies "Paradise of the Gods," or "Happy Home." Walhalla is the County Seat of Oconee County, South Carolina.

On December 24, 1849, Christopher F. Seeba, John A. Wagner, Claus Bullwinkel, John C. Henckel, and Jacob Schroder, trustees of the German Colonization Society of Charleston, bought 17,859 acres of land for $27,000 from Reverend Joseph Grisham, of the town West Union, one of the largest landed proprietors of the upcountry.

It was not long until the arrival of other pioneer settlers. Walhalla soon became a well-known German colony. The houses were built with primitive design and built mainly along Main Street. In the course of time more substantial houses were built. The town began to develop along the ridge from east to west. Main Street grew to an unusual length.

Walhalla become known as the "Shoe-String Town." This is not true because it has steadily grown in width as well and length. On April 13, 1948, the Midway section was added. Main Street is recognized as one of the most beautiful streets of which any town or city can boast.

Walhalla's Phone Connector

When you wanted to make a phone call you would call the operator who was stationed here. She/he would connect you to the person that you wanted to talk to.

The town of Walhalla, founded by the German Colonization Society out of Charleston in 1850, boasts a wide main street lined with good examples of heritage commercial architecture. Walhalla translates to the “Garden of the Gods” for those of Norse persuasion. German heritage and culture is celebrated with the community’s famous “Oktoberfest” which is held mid-October each year. “Santa” resides at Country Store Antiques on Main Street. Drop in for a "Ho, Ho, Ho." Walhalla is the sort of place where the locals drop into the paint and wallpaper store for a spot of relaxation in a few stuffed chairs set out just for them, where everyone knows everyone, where folks are friendly, and kind toward strangers.

Walhalla Cotton Mill - 1907

Established in Pickens District (county) as West Union, the town was granted a U.S. Post Office on February 8, 1834, and its first Postmaster was Mr. Tyre B. Mauldin. On August 13, 1853, the town's renaming to Walhalla was recognized by the Post Office Department, with Postmaster John P. Neibuhr. In 1868, Oconee County was created from Pickens County and Walhalla was named the County Seat. Its Post Office has been in continuous operation ever since inception in 1834.
Click Here to view / download a 2017 map of Walhalla and West Union, SC. Adobe PDF file. Fairly large.

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