VAN PATTON SHOALS (Upper Van Patton)
4 1/4 Miles West of Woodruff, SC (Van Patton Shoals, SC)
Van Patton Shoals, Enoree River
First Operation: 1908
Last Operation: August 16th, 1968
Demolition: November 1st, 1968
Enoree Power Company: 1907-1926
Broad River Power Company: 1926-1927
Wateree Power Company (Duke): 1927-1968
The waters of the Enoree River drove a small village mill, settled by Nicholas Van Patten in the early 1800s, named Van Patten Shoals. Later the shoals were known as Van Patton Shoals. As early as 1902, industrialist became interested in the power produced by the shoals. The Enoree Power Company was incorporated in 1907 in South Carolina and set to construct a hydroelectric dam at Van Patton Shoals. Construction began in 1907, being completed in 1908. A small steam plant was also constructed in the town of Woodruff, SC powering electric lighting by the Enoree Power Company.
Van Patton Shoals first began operation in 1908 by the Enoree Power Company. Transmission lines ran to the towns in the order of Fountain Inn, Simpsonville, and Conestee. Around the year 1917, the Enoree Power Company built and first operated Leatherwood Shoals or Lower Van Patton. Leatherwood Shoals transmitted power to Woodruff driving electric lighting and two cotton mills. On October 25th, 1926, the Broad River Power Company acquired Van Patton Shoals hydroelectric plant and operated it until July 29th, 1927 when the Wateree Power Company under control of the Duke Power Company acquired the power plant.
Duke Power ran the hydroelectric plant until its final day of operation on August 16th, 1968 due to the inefficiency of the plant and silting of the reservoir. The dam and powerhouse were demolished on November 1st, 1968 by the Duke Power Company. The transmission lines were left abandoned for many years and much of the original lines have been removed in more populated areas.
Much of the above information on the hydroelectric plants was provided by Duke Energy.
Industries & Towns Provided with Electricity (1907)
Van Patton Shoals, SC - Town of Van Patton Shoals.
Fountain Inn, SC - Town of Fountain Inn and the Fountain Inn Manufacturing Company (Cotton Mill).
Simpsonville, SC - Town of Simpsonville and the Simpsonville Cotton Mill.
Conestee, SC - Town of Conestee and the Reedy River Manufacturing Company (Cotton Mill).
Woodruff, SC - (line constructed after 1907) Town of Woodruff, the Woodruff Cotton Mills and the Gray Cotton Mills.
Transmission Lines & Substations