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QFF 2022-08-05
Posted on Aug 5th, 2022

 
 
 
 
          Quick Fact Friday
Florence O' Sullivan
 
The name Florence O’Sullivan probably brings to mind Sullivan’s Island, which was named after O’Sullivan due to his position as lookout on the island in the late 1600s. The Irish soldier from Kinsale, who is also sometimes called Florentia O’Sullivan, was on the ship Carolina that brought the first European settlers to the Charleston area in 1670. Before coming to South Carolina, O’Sullivan served the British fighting against the French in Barbados. On the journey to South Carolina, he became deputy to Lord Proprietor Peter Colleton, and was later appointed Surveyor General of the province. He became one of the first Europeans to set foot in the future Mount Pleasant when he was granted nearly 2400 acres of land in East Cooper in 1680. 
 
O’Sullivan’s contemporaries did not think highly of him, and many complained about his off-putting personality and incompetence as a surveyor. In 1670 secretary to the Lord’s Proprietors John Locke, who would later gain fame as one of the greatest philosophers of the Enlightenment, described O’Sullivan as “Dissentious, troublesome; bound to the peace and good behaviour; extractor of unreasonable fees; no able surveyor; knavish [...] disliked; unfit; ignorant of surveying; of no understanding; [... and] a very ill man.” O’Sullivan was removed from the position of Surveyor General in 1671, but continued to serve important positions in the colony until his death in 1683.
 
 
 
Image Credit: 1676 Map of Carolina
The Town of Mount Pleasant Historical Commission releases Quick Fact Fridays about the history of Mount Pleasant and about the Commission, its programs and activities. Historical facts are drawn largely from the Our History section of the Town's website and the Commission's own Mount Pleasant Historical website and app. Follow their links by clicking on the images below to discover what makes Mount Pleasant such a distinctive historical place! To receive Quick Fact Friday messages click here to subscribe. Email us at kmiller@tompsc.com if you're interested in learning more about a particular Mount Pleasant history topic!
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