Aiken County is the only county in the United States
named "Aiken." Formed in 1871
by combining portions of Edgefield, Lexington, Orangeburg,
and Barnwell counties, Aiken County was named for William Aiken,
who was the first president of the South Carolina Railroad
and Canal Company. Mr. Aiken reportedly never visited the County. Aiken County Government History.
Census counted 160,099 persons living in the County,
an increase of about 18,000 from 2000. Aiken is the fourth
largest South Carolina county by land area, and its
size of 1,073 square miles is 28 square miles larger than
the state of Rhode Island.
Extension's website points out that Aiken County is
located midway between the mountains and the coast and is bordered
on the west,
and Saluda Counties on the north, Barnwell and Orangeburg Counties
on the southeast and by Lexington County on the east. Aiken County
consists of 704,000 acres, of which 73,000 acres are part of
the U. S. Department of Energy's Savannah
River Site. ... The city
of Aiken is the county seat.
Aiken County's major crops are cotton, corn, bermudagrass, hay,
soybeans, timber, and peaches. Other crops include peanuts, small
grains, and watermelons. Beef cattle, hogs, chickens, and horses
are the most common farm animals. Aiken is a major racehorse
training area and is famous for its Triple Crown, which consists
of the Aiken Trials, the Steeplechase, and the High Goal Polo Game.
Aiken County enjoys a mild climate with an average winter temperature
of 48°F. and an average summer temperature of 79°F. The average
daily maximum temperature is 90°F. The annual precipitation averages
48 inches with the majority falling between April and September.
Average seasonal snowfall is 2 inches and average relative humidity
Several industrial parks, owned by Aiken County, the City of
Aiken, or the City of North Augusta, are available for new and
expanding companies. The Aiken-Edgefield
Economic Development Partnership coordinates industrial recruitment efforts in Aiken
Education in Aiken County is provided by the Aiken
County School District and private schools. Post-secondary
educational opportunities include the University
of South Carolina at Aiken and Aiken
Ground transportation is dominant in Aiken County.
Aiken County's Best Friend
Express provides local bus travel in and between Aiken and
North Augusta, with connections to the Augusta
Public Transit bus system. Greyhound Bus Lines provides out-of-County
bus travel from its station
in Aiken. Interstate 20 travels across Aiken County to connect
with Columbia and points east, and Augusta and points west. The
of I-520 to I-20 near Exit 5 has been completed. Other major highways include US 1, SC 19,
US 25, US 78, and US 278. The SC
Department of Transportation is responsible for maintenance
on all State roads. Their website includes status of current
road conditions in Aiken County. Road maintenance on other
and streets is the responsibility of either Aiken
County's Public Works Department, or the
Public Works Departments of City
of Aiken or City
of North Augusta, depending on the road.
Scheduled air service is available through the Augusta
Regional Airport (AGS) and the Columbia
Metropolitan Airport (CAE). Chartered and other airport
services are available at the City
of Aiken Municipal Airport.