Fort Mill, SC

HOA Management In Fort Mill, South Carolina

Fort Mill, South Carolina, or Fort Mill Township, is located in York County. Fort Mill is a suburb of Charlotte, North Carolina, and only 19 miles from downtown Charlotte. Per the U.S. Census, Fort Mill’s 2019 estimated population is 22,284. The zip codes for Fort Mill are 29715, 29716, and 29708. The area codes are 803 and 839.

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The town was formally established in 1873. However, the origin of the name can be traced back to around 1830 when it came into the area’s nomenclature. Fort Mill’s name derives from its location between a grist mill, Webb’s Mill, and a never-completed colonial British fort. Webb’s Mill once stood on the Steele Creek, and the fort was located just south of present-day Fort Mill’s town limits. Before the settlement was called Fort Mill, it was called Fort Hill. However, there was another Fort Hill already established in South Carolina, so the name Fort Mill came into being.

Fort Mill, South Carolina

Historical population

Census Pop. %±

1880 290 —

1890 689 137.6%

1900 1,394 102.3%

1910 1,616 15.9%

1920 1,940 20.0%

1930 2,112 8.9%

1940 2,919 38.2%

1950 3,204 9.8%

1960 3,315 3.5%

1970 4,505 35.9%

1980 4,162 −7.6%

1990 4,930 18.5%

2000 8,910 44.7%

2010 10,811 12.6%

2019 (est.) 22,284 51.5%

As of 2019, per the U.S. Census estimates, Fort Mill’s median annual income for a household was $91,061. Per capita income in the past 12 months (2019) $37,498. The household size was 2.89 people.

A Brief History of the Fort Mill Area

The Catawba Indians were the first recorded inhabitants of Fort Mill and York County. The Catawba are also known as the Issa, Essa, or Iswä; however, they are more commonly known as the Iswa (yeh is-WAH h’reh). Iswa means in the Catawba language “people of the river.” It is estimated that during the early American colonial period there were up to 25,000 Catawba Indian inhabitants in the region. European diseases, primarily smallpox, that the Catawba Indians had not built-up immunities to, devastated the tribe. Tragically through their continual contact with the European settlers, generally beginning around 1680, these diseases in less than a hundred years reduced the number of Catawba Indians to around 400 by 1775. According to the 2010 U.S. Census, the Catawba Indian population has only rebounded to 2,600.  

There is very little written record of the Catawba Indians before the 17th century. What is believed to be the first European contact with the Catawba Indians was with Spanish explorer Hernando de Soto in 1540. Spanish explorer Juan Pardo is believed to be the next European to have recorded his encounter with the Catawba Indians in 1567. This can be found in Vandera’s narratives of Pardo’s expedition where the Catawba are referred to as Ysa Issa (Iswa). German explorer John Lederer encountered the Catawba Indians on his expedition in 1670 and referred to them as the Ushery. It is believed that the Catawba Indians inhabited the lands along the Catawba River as far back as 6,000 years ago. Their tribe has been thought to have inhabited the Piedmont regions of the Carolinas up into Virginia.  

The Catawba Indians were mostly an agrarian-based society, who subsidized their diet with fishing and hunting. Their early society was structured within villages that were surrounded by palisades constructed of logs and tree branches. The palisades were to help protect the village from attack by other warring Indian tribes. Within the palisades, there was a large council house with an open area for village gatherings. The palisades contained small dwellings which were rounded on top and were constructed of tree bark. These small dwellings typically housed the extended family. It was common for the Catawba Indians to construct a stone circular sweat lodge within the palisades. 

In the 17th century, commerce between the Catawba Indians and colonists began to have a major influence on the Catawba society. The American colonists trading along the Catawba River basin began referring to all Indians in the area as Catawba Indians. Catawba trade goods included deerskins and other animal furs. The colonial’s traded firearms, knives, cloth, trinkets, and alcohol. As a result of this robust trade, the Catawba Indians became known for their trading abilities and their penchant for commerce.

The Catawbas were a powerful tribe, who would on occasion wage war with other tribes. The Cherokee Indians and the Catawba Indians had many conflicts because they were both large tribes with bordering territories. However, the Catawbas were known as a peaceful society, but ferocious warriors.  Catawbas were friendly to the colonial settlers, unlike some tribes. The Catawbas maintained good relations with the British Crown during the colonization of the American colonies, up until the American Revolution.   

As European settlers migrated to the Piedmont of South Carolina during the 18th century, this good relationship helped maintain the peace. The good relations and the commerce that the colonials engaged in with the Catawbas were beneficial to both sides. The Catawba Indians protected the settlers from other tribes who were hostile to their migration. The Catawbas engaged in commerce that helped them prosper at a much higher level than some other tribes. One example is the Catawba Indian’s access to firearms before their rival tribes. 

The Catawba allied with the British in the French & Indian War. In appreciation, King George III in the 1763 Treaty of Augusta granted the Catawba Indians 144,000 acres in what is currently York County, South Carolina. This 144,000-acre reservation spanned present-day Fort Mill and Indian Land, South Carolina. Paradoxically, the Catawba already considered these 144,000 acres their land before King George III granted it to them. The treaty was unsuccessful in keeping European settlers from encroaching and laying claim to the Catawba Indian’s land.

Shortly after the treaty was signed the Catawbas started leasing parcels between 30 and 1,000 acres to settlers. Reportedly, the first European settlers on the reservation, present-day Fort Mill, were Thomas and Elizabeth Spratt. The Spratts leased several 1,000 acres to farm. Descendants of the original Spratts still reside in the area. Congressman John Spratt represented South Carolina’s 5th congressional district in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1983 to 2011. The 5th congressional district includes the original 144,000-acre reservation.

The Catawba Indians supported the American Patriot cause during the American Revolution. During the American Revolution, smallpox epidemics affected the entire North American population, the Native American population was affected, by all indications, more severely than the population of European descent. By 1775, smallpox reduced the Catawba Indians population to around 400. A population decrease that has of today not been recovered from. With their population dropping, some Catawba Indians continued to live on their tribal reservation in the York County area. Some temporarily joined other tribes that had weathered the smallpox epidemics.

Over the next fifty years, the settlers, or their descendants, who had leased the reservation land from the Catawbas wanted to take title to the land. To accomplish this, these settlers lobbied South Carolina politicians to force the Catawbas to sell. This came to a head in the 1830s and 1840s with the Indian Removal Act passed by the Federal government. This Act was the forceable removal of tribes of Native Americans from their ancestral lands in the eastern United States to the Indian Territory (present-day Oklahoma).    

The Federal Indian Removal Act was used as a lever to intimidate the Catawba Indians into signing the Treaty at Nations Ford with the state of South Carolina. The treaty required the Catawbas to relinquish their original 144,000-acre reservation to the State of South Carolina. The Catawbas were promised a new reservation in a less densely populated area. The Catawbas were also promised to be financially compensated. This matter was not settled until 1993 when the state of South Carolina agreed to pay a $50-million settlement to the Catawba Indians. 

The early European settlers migrating into York County and the future Fort Mill came predominately from the Philadelphia port and traveled down the Great Wagon Road. There were established roads, some very rudimentary, from the South Carolina coast and ports during most of the colonial period. However, immigration from the South Carolina coast did play a factor in settlers reaching the Piedmont. 

The Scots-Irish settlers started arriving in the Fort Mill area in the 1750s and 1760s. From this immigration, a small settlement soon developed. A post office was opened in 1820 and this is probably when it was discovered that there was already a “Fort Hill,” South Carolina and necessitated the name change to Fort Mill. 

The Charlotte and South Carolina Railroad laid rail lines through Fort Mill and began servicing Fort Mill in 1852. The line operated between Charlotte, North Carolina, and Columbia, South Carolina. It eventually ran for just over 110 miles. This was the first railroad to serve Mecklenburg County, North Carolina, and York County. The very first train entered the Fort Mill depot on July 4, 1852. This first train’s arrival and Independence Day was an all-day celebration for the citizens of Fort Mill.

The railroad was financed by area businessmen who needed a better method of transporting their products to market. The Springs and White families were investors and driving forces in the founding and operation of this railroad. Planter John Springs III was an investor. He owned a large plantation in York County that primarily produced cotton. With railroad transportation, it opened up more markets for cotton and other commerce. The White family were cotton planters as well and benefited from the commerce this rail line produced. The completion of the Charlotte and South Carolina Railroad has been singled out as the most impactful economic event in Charlotte’s history, and for the surrounding areas. The railroad’s completion brought with it expanded commerce and better opportunity for the region. 

Agriculture was the primary economic driver in the Fort Mill area for most of the 19th century as it was in the 18th century. Cotton was the leading cash crop. A cash crop is a crop grown solely to sell for a profit. The local economy’s almost total dependence on agriculture slowly waned in the late 1800s with textile manufacturing taking root in Fort Mill and the region.     

The Fort Mill Manufacturing Co., a textile manufacturing business, was opened in 1888 by Samuel Elliot White. This one mill eventually employed up to 2,000 people. It became the largest manufacture of bed sheet fabric in the world. In 1892, White opened another textile mill, called the White Plant, in Fort Mill. These two mills were the origin of the textile manufacturing giant Springs Industries. 

Springs Industries was the largest industrial employer in the state of South Carolina with annual sales in 1987 of $1.7 billion. At this time, Springs had 39 plants in six states along with a plant in Britain, Belgium, and Japan. They employed 23,500 worldwide. 

The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), the trade agreement between the United States Canada, and Mexico, ratified in 1993, began negatively impacting domestic textile production immediately. While decreasing employment trends in the textile industry had already been occurring, NAFTA exacerbated this problem. The original Fort Mill textile mill opened by Samuel Elliot White in 1888 closed in 1983. The second mill, the White Plant, finally closed in 2003.

Fortunately, with the reduction in agriculture cultivation and the decline of textile manufacturing in the Fort Mill area, the economy recovered quickly. Fort Mill continued to grow and prosper. This was partly due to the more diverse industrial base in Fort Mill and the surrounding area. However, the largest economic driver is Fort Mill’s proximity to Charlotte, North Carolina. Fort Mill and the surrounding area have become bedroom communities for the Charlotte workforce. Lower taxes and excellent schools have been a huge attraction for commuters. There has also been a great deal of economic development on the South Carolina side of the state line due to lower taxes and South Carolina state business development incentives.

Public primary and secondary education in Fort Mill are through the Fort Mill School District. This system is well-rated. Postsecondary education near Fort Mill: Winthrop University, York Technical College, Wingate University-Ballantyne, and Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary. Postsecondary education in the Charlotte Metro Area:The University of North Carolina at Charlotte (UNCC), Johnson C. Smith University, Queens University, Pfeiffer University, Johnson & Wales University, Montreat College, Northeastern University, Art Institute of Charlotte, Carolinas College of Health Sciences, Central Piedmont Community College, Charlotte Christian College and Theological Seminary, Connecticut School of Broadcasting, Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, Southern Evangelical Seminary, Wake Forest University School of Business. The University of North Carolina at Charlotte is a Division One school with a nationally recognized sports program. Johnson C. Smith has a nationally recognized Division Two sports program. 

In Fort Mill the following places are listed on the National Register of Historic Places:

Springfield Plantation – built before 1806

White Homestead – built 1831

Fort Mill Downtown Historic District – 17 buildings built between 1860 and 1940

Wilson House – constructed around 1869

Banks Mack House – constructed around 1871

John M. White House – built 1872

Thornwell-Elliot House – constructed around 1877

Mack-Belk House – constructed around 1890

Mills House – built 1906

National Guard Armory – built 1938

Unity Presbyterian Church Complex (church, manse, Unity Cemetery, Old Unity Cemetery)

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William Douglas Property Management offers professional HOA association management in Fort Mill, SC and its surrounding areas. If you are looking for full-service community association management contact our team at (704) 347-8900 or click here to request a proposal. We look forward to discussing with you how we can bring the best to your community.

Fort Mill Management Office 7000 Regent Parkway, Suite 107 Fort Mill, SC 29715

  • Almond Glen
  • Arlington
  • Audubon Lake
  • Baden Village
  • Bailiwyck
  • Baxter Village
  • Belair at Carolina Lakes
  • Bexley
  • Black Horse Run
  • Brayden
  • Bridgehampton
  • BridgeMill
  • Chastain Village
  • Clairemont
  • English Trails
  • Fair Oaks
  • Fairway Townes
  • Fallbrook
  • Fieldstone
  • Firethorne
  • Forest at Fort Mill
  • Four Seasons at Gold Hill
  • Fox Ridge
  • Hawks Creek
  • Kensington Place
  • Knightsbridge
  • Lake Ridge
  • Lake Ridge at Tega Cay
  • Legacy Park
  • Madison Green
  • Massey
  • Regent Park
  • Reserve at Gold Hill
  • Riverchase
  • Springfield
  • Springfield Meadows
  • Stafford Oaks
  • Stanton Heights
  • Sutton Place
  • Townes at River Crossing
  • Waterside at the Catawba
  • Waterstone
  • Whitley Mills

Fort Mill, SC

HOA Management In Fort Mill, South Carolina

Boasting a population of close to 12,000 people, the popular town of Fort Mill SC has grown and thrived over the last decade. Thanks in part to its proximity to both Charlotte to the North, and Rock Hill to the South, Fort Mill offers low stress and spacious living with all the amenities that large towns provide. Home to Carowinds, one of the areas largest attractions, the area is also a draw for new business.

All of this makes Fort Mill a wonderful place to own a home and raise a family. If your homeowner’s association in Fort Mill is in need of a new HOA management company, William Douglas Property Management is here to meet all your management needs.

William Douglas Management has been providing quality association management services to Fort Mill, South Carolina since 1980. We exclusively manage Homeowner Associations, Condominium Owner Associations, and Commercial Condominium Owner Associations.

William Douglas Property Management offers professional HOA association management in Fort Mill, SC and its surrounding areas. If you are looking for full-service community association management contact our team at (704) 347-8900 or click here to request a proposal. We look forward to discussing with you how we can bring the best to your community.

  • Almond Glen
  • Arlington
  • Audubon Lake
  • Baden Village
  • Bailiwyck
  • Baxter Village
  • Belair at Carolina Lakes
  • Bexley
  • Black Horse Run
  • Brayden
  • Bridgehampton
  • BridgeMill
  • Chastain Village
  • Clairemont
  • English Trails
  • Fair Oaks
  • Fairway Townes
  • Fallbrook
  • Fieldstone
  • Firethorne
  • Forest at Fort Mill
  • Four Seasons at Gold Hill
  • Fox Ridge
  • Hawks Creek
  • Kensington Place
  • Knightsbridge
  • Lake Ridge
  • Lake Ridge at Tega Cay
  • Legacy Park
  • Madison Green
  • Massey
  • Regent Park
  • Reserve at Gold Hill
  • Riverchase
  • Springfield
  • Springfield Meadows
  • Stafford Oaks
  • Stanton Heights
  • Sutton Place
  • Townes at River Crossing
  • Waterside at the Catawba
  • Waterstone
  • Whitley Mills