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South Carolina’s Most Progressive Cities

South Carolina's Most Progressive Cities

Not every young professional would consider themselves progressive. However, for those that do, let’s see what cities in South Carolina would be best for you to live in. Here is a brief list of South Carolina’s most progressive cities.


Columbia is the state’s capital and its residents are about 85% democratic. There are a ton of options when it comes to activities and dining. The city has been working on its infrastructure and community appeal for the past couple of decades. In the city, you’ll find tons of places to visit as it is a common spot for South Carolina tourism. However, there are so many activities, venues, and events that take place here that it doesn’t feel like a tourist city at all.

One of the most beneficial aspects of researching Columbia houses for sale is its warm, sunny, southern weather that you cannot get enough of. There are many green spaces available in Columbia as well as parks, trails, and activity areas. There is a presence of wildlife in Columbia such as armadillos, coyotes, and alligators. You can visit a variety of animals at the Carolina Wildlife Center too.

With superb parks, animals, and events, there are only a few more boxes that Columbia needs to check to be an all-around awesome city to live in. Well, there’s awesome food with creations from all over the world. In addition to that, there’s a bustling nightlife if you tend to be a night owl. And if that doesn’t convince you, you’ll be happy to know that Columbia is one of the most friendly southern towns you can visit. 


Where Asheville is located is where the inhabitants of the Cherokee Indians were before the arrival of English settlers. This area is a confluence between the French Broad River and the Swannanoa River. Back before the Civil War, many of the professional class in this area were slave owners. By 1865, after significant resistance by the Confederate army, it was seized by the Union. With its history engraved in the lives of African American southern life during that time, the area is home to the South Asheville Cemetery which is the oldest and largest black public cemetery in the state.

Afterward, there were railroads made and homes were created to house the many displaced African Americans and their families. After the great depression hit this area, many of these black communities were displaced once again. However, all hope is not lost and there are reasons the area is so progressive today. The city announced in 2020 that they would make reparations for the city’s role in historic slavery and discrimination.

The city has decided to remove many statues and figures that represent slaveholders or confederate soldiers that have been idealized in the south for generations. In addition to this, the area has committed to becoming a clean city turning to renewable and clean energy by 2040. Although it may have a tarnished history as being a confederate city, they are moving forward doing the best they can to educate about past atrocities and condemn their old ways.


In almost the opposite fashion, post World War II Orangeburg pushed for civil rights change and they pushed hard. This city, like many others, was disenfranchised and subjected to Jim Crow laws after African Americans were freed. They created two major colleges for themselves and pushed for the right to an education. By the time of the 1960s civil rights movement, black Americans in Orangeburg had enough.

Even after the Brown vs the Board of Education, white extremists retaliated by evicting black renters from their homes. Even after the Civil Rights Act of 1964, there was still much debate on a segregated bowling alley in the area. Violence broke out and 3 black students were killed by police along with 27 others injured.

Currently, Orangeburg is home to many cultures, religions, and races that are free to be themselves. In 2000, the city set up the Orangeburg County Community of Character initiative that promotes civic excellence. This community is a nonprofit that works in partnership with local schools, offices, parks, and other social services to help everyone in the community of Orangeburg. There are a few more progressive cities in South Carolina that you can check out as well. 

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