The railroad was such an integral factor in the founding of the town of Varnville in Hampton County that the town has lovingly restored this depot which was built in the 1880s. The Varnville area was known by the name of Dixie when it was originally settled in 1860.
When the railroad came 10 years later, its tracks ran along the northern side of the community. James Varn and his brother, Reverend Berry Varn, owned a sawmill north of the tracks. They sold their right of way to the railroad, and the town soon expanded across the tracks. A post office was established in 1872 and the town took the Varn brothers’ name.
The Port Royal & Augusta Railroad connected Port Royal to Augusta, Georgia in the 1870s. Depot stops along the way often generated enough shipping and commerce for nearby towns to flourish. The railroad later changed hands, and the Charleston & Western Carolina Railroad built the depot station pictured here.