This house in rural Bowman stands as a symbol of resilience within South Carolina’s agricultural community. The small farming village, located southeast of Orangeburg, was established in 1887 when businessman Samuel Dibble purchased land from the family of Reddick A. Bowman. Dibble saw potential in the the logging railroad that traveled through the area on its way from Branchville to Four Hole Swamp near Harleyville. The land that became Bowman was used to harvest timber and grow cotton.
Cotton grew abundantly in Bowman for years, but the prosperity of the cash crop eventually plummeted. After the boll weevil destroyed South Carolina cotton crops in the early twentieth century, the farmers of Bowman turned to dairy farming for commerce. Bowman’s first fluid gallon of milk was shipped for processing on January 1, 1927. Today, the small town is known as the Dairy Capital of South Carolina and produces 14,000 gallons of milk a day, sending them to processing and distributing plants all over the state.