Did you know that South Carolina technically had two PRESIDENTS and existed as its own country before the United States even existed as a country?
The royal colony of South Carolina declared its independence from Great Britain on March 15, 1776, almost 4 months before the colonies as a whole would declare its independence. South Carolina became an independent republic, called the Republic of South Carolina, the first such republic in America. Then on March 26, the newly formed Republic of South Carolina drafted its first Constitution and elected its first president, John Rutledge, and it’s first vice president, Henry Laurens.
John Rutledge (1739-1800) was the elder brother of Edward Rutledge, who signed the Declaration of Independence as a representative from South Carolina months after South Carolina’s declaration.
Rawlins Lowndes (1721-1800) was South Carolina’s second president, but he was apart of the committee to change the name of the office from president to governor.
John Rutledge would later go on to serve the state of South Carolina again as its leader, but this time under the title of governor after Lowndes term.