South Carolina Picture Project
South Carolina Picture Project

Rutherford Brickyard — North Augusta, South Carolina

SC Picture Project  |  Aiken County  |  Rutherford Brickyard

Adopt A South Carolina Landmark
Rutherford Brickyard

These brick ruins are remnants of the former town of Hamburg. Founded in 1821 by Henry Shultz and named for his hometown of Hamburg, Germany, the village sat on the banks of the Savannah River and looked across to Augusta, Georgia – Shultz’s commercial competition. Hamburg quickly developed into a popular trade town along the river and thrived from shipping cotton to the port cities of Savannah and Charleston. However, its success was short-lived. When the South Carolina Rail Road Company built a rail bridge connecting Hamburg to Augusta in 1853, Hamburg became obsolete as a trading post. Commerce eventually dwindled to the point where the town was all but deserted by the time of the Civil War.

Rutherford Brickyard

Larry Gleason of Aiken, 2014 © Do Not Use Without Written Consent

Following the war, freed African-Americans settled in the town, forming a municipal government and a militia: Company A, Ninth Regiment National Guard of the State of South Carolina. The state administration under Governor Scott even issued the company arms. This armed militia of African-American Republicans caused tension for white Democrats, particularly those of the local “Rifle” and “Sabre” clubs. As a result, a disagreement concerning the militia’s use of a public road during drill formation escalated to violence in July of 1876. Militia captain Doc Adams was charged with blocking a public road on July 4th. He later was intimidated by a large group of armed white men while proceeding to court on July 8th.

Rutherford Brickyard Sign

Larry Gleason of Aiken, 2014 © Do Not Use Without Written Consent

Adams fled to the militia armory for safety, soon joined by roughly 40 of his men. They were quickly surrounded by more than 100 white men, demanding that the militia surrender its arms. When the militia refused, gun violence erupted. The event left seven men dead – one white, six black – and became known as the Hamburg Massacre. Today a monument erected in 1916 to McKie Meriwether (also spelled Merriwether), the sole white man killed in the massacre and a member of the attacking party on the militia, stands in present North Augusta. An historical marker unveiled in 2011 that is to be erected near the 5th Street bridge commemorates the six black men who were killed in the tragedy. Prior to being placed at the bridge, the marker will be on display at the Aiken County Historical Museum and First and Second Providence Baptist churches. A plaque listing the names of those killed is expected to follow the marker.

Rutherford Brickyard Hamburg

Larry Gleason of Aiken, 2014 © Do Not Use Without Written Consent

Following the Hamburg Massacre, the village became even more sparsely populated, though this brick factory was established here in 1895. Hamburg and other areas along the Savannah River banks such as Edgefield took advantage of clay deposits in the local soil to develop pottery and brick factories. While not as lucrative as the shipping industry, the brick and clay businesses allowed residents to maintain a livelihood. The W.J. Rutherford and Company brick factory office is pictured above.

Rutherford Company Brickyard

Larry Gleason of Aiken, 2014 © Do Not Use Without Written Consent

A series of floods in the early twentieth century wiped out the Hamburg population for good, and the deserted land now lies within North Augusta’s town limits. The railroad connecting the hamlet to Augusta was dismantled in 1908. The concrete piers for its bridge are still present and can be viewed just downstream from the Southern Railroad bridge.

Rutherford Brickyard Pond

Larry Gleason of Aiken, 2014 © Do Not Use Without Written Consent

Brick factories and potteries also were established up the bank in North Augusta in the late nineteenth century, and remnants currently are extant. Brick Pond Park is a landscaped public greenspace featuring ponds once used to excavate clay for pottery and bricks, similar to the one pictured above and once used by the Rutherford Company.

Rutherford Brickyard Info

Address: Sandpit Road, North Augusta, SC 29841
GPS Coordinates: 33.478881,-81.956195

Rutherford Brickyard Map

Please Share Your Thoughts!

Did you enjoy this page? Do you have any information we should add? Send us your comments below — we can't wait to hear from you!

2 Comments about Rutherford Brickyard

SC Picture Project says:
November 4th, 2018 at 4:28 pm

As far as we know, they’re accessible by foot. There is a road that cuts through that should allow them to be accessible. Here are the GPS coordinates for the ruins: 33.478881, -81.956195.

Claudia says:
November 4th, 2018 at 10:00 am

Where are these remnants actually located on a map? Are they accessible on foot? I would like to view them or are they now on private property?


Join Us on Facebook
Search for Landmarks


Abbeville ACE Basin Adams Run Aiken Allendale Anderson Awendaw Bamberg Banks Barns & Farms Barnwell Batesburg-Leesville Beaches Beaufort Beech Island Belton Bennettsville Bishopville Blackville Bluffton Bridges Bygone Landmarks Camden Carnegie Libraries Cayce Cemeteries Charleston Charleston Navy Base Cheraw Chester Chesterfield Churches Clemson Clinton Clio Colleges Columbia Conway Cordesville Courthouses Darlington Daufuskie Island Denmark Dillon Donalds Easley Edgefield Edisto Elloree Erhardt Fairfax Florence Folly Beach Forests and Nature Preserves Fort Mill Fountain Inn Gaffney Garden City Beach Georgetown Glenn Springs Graniteville Greeleyville Greenville Greenwood Greer Hamburg Hampton Hardeeville Hartsville Hemingway Hilton Head Historical Photos Historic Houses Honea Path Hopkins Hotels & Inns Huger Hunting Island Isle of Palms Jails James Island Jamestown Johns Island Johnsonville Johnston Kiawah Island Kingstree Lake City Lake Marion Lakes Lancaster Landrum Latta Laurens Lexington Libraries Lighthouses Little River Lowndesville Manning Marion McClellanville McCormick Military Mills Moncks Corner Mountains Mount Carmel Mount Pleasant Mullins Murrells Inlet Myrtle Beach National Register Newberry Ninety Six North Augusta North Charleston North Myrtle Beach Orangeburg Pacolet Parks Pawleys Island Pendleton Pickens Piers Pinopolis Plantations Pomaria Port Royal Post Offices Ravenel Restaurants Ridge Spring Ridgeway Rivers Roadside Oddities Robert Mills Rock Hill Rockville Rosenwald Schools Salters Saluda Santee Savannah River Site SC Artists SC Heroes of the Alamo Schools Seneca Shrimp Boats Society Hill Spartanburg Sports Springs St. George St. Helena Island St. Matthews Stateburg Stores Sullivan's Island Summerton Summerville Sumter Sunset Sunsets Synagogues Town Clocks Trains & Depots Trees Trenton Troy Turbeville Ulmer Union Wadmalaw Island Walhalla Walterboro Ware Shoals Waterfalls Water Towers Wedgefield West Columbia Westminster Winnsboro Woodruff Yemassee York