Manuscript Collection



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Accession 1208 - M575 (628)

Inclusive Dates



Open under the rules and regulations of the Louise Pettus Archives and Special Collections

Collection Size

15 bound pieces



Historical Note

George A. Trenholm (1807-1876) was a merchant and financier from South Carolina. He accumulated his wealth through his association with a cotton trading company, becoming a senior partner by the early 1850s. He represented Charleston in the SC General Assembly in the 1850s and 1860s. He and his wife, Anna, had 13 children. Trenholm served as the Confederate Secretary of the Treasury 1864-1865, was imprisoned in a federal prison for a few months, paroled in 1865 and pardoned in 1866. He created a new cotton brokerage firm and through shrewd business practices and the postwar phosphate mining boom, regained much of his wealth. He died in 1876.

William Gregg (1800-1867) was a manufacturer and industrial promoter. An apprenticed watchmaker, Gregg set up shop in Columbia, SC and built a successful business importing and producing jewelery, silver, and watches. He invested in textile mills and created an importing firm. After a trip to the Northeast, Gregg called on the South to invest in manufacturing and end its reliance on agriculture. Gregg died in 1867 after standing in waist deep water helping to repair damage caused by the break of the Graniteville dam.

Scope and Content Note

The collection consists of a booklet of letters to the editor from George A. Trenholm and William Gregg concerning The Blue Ridge Railroad. This railroad was to be built to complete the connection of the line that was to run from Charleston, SC to Cincinnati, Ohio. This line would have run from Anderson, SC to Knoxville, TN. Construction began in 1854 and ceased just before the beginning of the Civil War. The railroad was never completed. The letters appeared in the Edgefield Advertiser, Charleston Courier, and Charleston Mercury in 1860.


The Blue Ridge Railroad: Letters of Mr. George A. Trenholm and Mr. William Gregg on the Subject was a gift to Winthrop from the Cain Family in 1959.


Railroads, Blue Ridge Railroad Company, Railroads South Carolina


For information concerning copyright please contact the Louise Pettus Archives and Special Collections at Winthrop University.

The Blue Ridge Railroad: Letters of Mr. George A. Trenholm and Mr. William Gregg on That Subject - Accession 1208 - M575 (628)

LC Subject Headings

Blue Ridge Railroad Company (South Carolina); Railroads--South Carolina