Bethune is a small town in Kershaw County, South Carolina, United States. The population was 334 at the 2010 census. It is part of the Columbia, South Carolina Metropolitan Statistical Area.
Europeans first moved into the area in the early 1800s, finding members of the Kadapaw tribe living in the area. Originally, the settlers named the town "Lynchwood", and in 1828 they established a post office. After the railroads came to the area, the town was officially chartered in 1900 and the name changed to honor Daniel Murdock Bethune.
Bethune is located in northeastern Kershaw County at (34.414881, -80.347414), northeast of Camden, the county seat, and southwest of Cheraw along U.S. Route 1. South Carolina Highway 341 (Main Street) crosses US 1 in the center of town; it leads northwest to Kershaw and south to Bishopville.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the town of Bethune has a total area of , all land.
The Lynches River passes east of the town, and its tributary the Little Lynches River passes to the southwest. The rivers and the town are part of the watershed of the Great Pee Dee River.
The MAC-Hunter Astronomical Observatory, a cooperative project of South Carolina amateur astronomers in the Midlands Astronomy Club, is sited south of town.
As of the census of 2000, there were 352 people, 165 households, and 104 families residing in the town. The population density was 309.4 people per square mile (119.2/km2). There were 193 housing units at an average density of 169.6 per square mile (65.4/km2). The racial makeup of the town was 89.77% White, 9.66% African American, 0.28% Pacific Islander, 0.28% from other races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.84% of the population.
There were 165 households, out of which 21.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 49.7% were married couples living together, 10.9% had a female householder with no husband present, and 36.4% were non-families. 34.5% of all households were made up of individuals, and 21.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.13 and the average family size was 2.72.
In the town, the population was spread out, with 17.3% under the age of 18, 7.1% from 18 to 24, 22.2% from 25 to 44, 29.8% from 45 to 64, and 23.6% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 47 years. For every 100 females, there were 83.3 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 84.2 males.
The median income for a household in the town was $32,083, and the median income for a family was $40,972. Males had a median income of $37,250 versus $26,406 for females. The per capita income for the town was $18,879. About 5.3% of families and 7.2% of the population were below the poverty line, including 15.5% of those under age 18 and 10.7% of those age 65 or over.
Bethune has a public library, a branch of the Kershaw County Library.
Arts and culture
The Bethune Chicken Strut is an annual festival that takes place for three days every August. The festival includes a parade that takes place down Main Street, a classic car show, carnival rides and live musical performances. The festival began in the early 1970s.
The Bethune Christmas Parade is one of many parades that takes place during the Christmas season in Kershaw County. The parade takes place down Main Street.
This page uses material from the Wikipedia article Bethune, SC, which is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 4.0.