Charleston South Carolina
Charleston is the oldest and second-largest city in the southeastern U.S. state of South Carolina, the county seat of Charleston County, and the principal city in the CharlestonâNorth CharlestonâSummerville Metropolitan Statistical Area. The city lies just south of the geographical midpoint of South Carolina's coastline and is located on Charleston Harbor, an inlet of the Atlantic Ocean formed by the confluence of the Ashley and Cooper rivers.
Founded in 1670 as Charles Towne in honor of King Charles II of England, Charleston adopted its present name in 1783. It moved to its present location on Oyster Point in 1680 from a location on the west bank of the Ashley River known as Albemarle Point. By 1690, Charles Towne was the fifth largest city in North America, and it remained among the ten largest cities in the United States through the 1840 census. With a 2010 census population of 120,080 (and a 2012 estimate of 124,632), current trends put Charleston as the fastest-growing municipality in South Carolina. The city's metropolitan area population was counted by the 2010 census at 664,607 â the second largest in the state â and the 75th-largest metropolitan statistical area in the United States.
Known for its rich history, well-preserved architecture, restaurant community, and mannerly people, Charleston has received a large number of accolades, including "America's Most Friendly [City]" by Travel + Leisure in 2011 and "the most polite and hospitable city in America" by Southern Living magazine.