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Cheraw, South Carolina

Cheraw is a town located in Chesterfield County, South Carolina. As of the 2000 census, the town had a total population of 5,524.

Table of contents
1 Geography
2 Demographics
3 History
4 Famous Persons
5 Schools


Cheraw is located at 34°41'48" North, 79°53'42" West (34.696573, -79.895087)1.

The Pee Dee river runs adjacent to the town.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 12.0 km² (4.6 mi²). 11.9 km² (4.6 mi²) of it is land and 0.1 km² (0.04 mi²) of it is water. The total area is 0.65% water.


As of the census of 2000, there are 5,524 people, 2,290 households, and 1,470 families residing in the town. The population density is 462.7/km² (1,197.6/mi²). There are 2,568 housing units at an average density of 215.1/km² (556.7/mi²). The racial makeup of the town is 45.76% White, 52.21% African American, 0.36% Native American, 0.81% Asian, 0.00% Pacific Islander, 0.31% from other races, and 0.54% from two or more races. 0.80% of the population are Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There are 2,290 households out of which 31.0% have children under the age of 18 living with them, 35.4% are married couples living together, 25.1% have a female householder with no husband present, and 35.8% are non-families. 33.0% of all households are made up of individuals and 14.0% have someone living alone who is 65 years of age or older. The average household size is 2.32 and the average family size is 2.96.

In the town the population is spread out with 26.5% under the age of 18, 7.6% from 18 to 24, 24.4% from 25 to 44, 22.7% from 45 to 64, and 18.9% who are 65 years of age or older. The median age is 39 years. For every 100 females there are 78.7 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there are 70.7 males.

The median income for a household in the town is $21,897, and the median income for a family is $31,136. Males have a median income of $27,405 versus $22,003 for females. The per capita income for the town is $13,801. 32.1% of the population and 27.3% of families are below the poverty line. Out of the total people living in poverty, 43.1% are under the age of 18 and 21.9% are 65 or older.


Originally the area in and around Cheraw was occupied by the Pee Dee and Cheraw tribes of Native Americans. However, the area was later colonized by immigrants, and by 1750 was one of 6 South Carolina towns that appeared on English maps.

The town was incorporated in 1820. 1820 was also when the first bridge was built over the Pee Dee river, and when steamboat service began. Cheraw became a significant trading hub during this time.

During the American Civil War, Cheraw was occupied by the forces of William Tecumseh Sherman. Because Sherman found Cheraw to be such a pleasant place, it was one of the few southern towns he did not destroy.

Famous Persons

Dizzy Gillespie was born in Cheraw on October 21st, 1917.


Cheraw's schools are part of the Chesterfeild County School System.

Cheraw Primary School (Grades K-2) Cheraw Intermedate School (3-5) Long Middle School (6-8) Cheraw High School (9-12)