About The S.C. State Guard
When serious natural or man-made disasters strike the State of South Carolina, the mission of the State Guard is to quickly respond to protect people and property and to help communities recover. Acting in coordination with the National Guard, law enforcement, and other state, county and municipal agencies during times of emergency, the State Guard is part of the South Carolina Military Department under the direction of the Adjutant General. Its Commander in Chief is the Governor of the State of South Carolina.
The State Guard is organized as an army brigade under the leadership of the Commander of the SCSG (COMMAND). It is comprised of the Personal Staff, Special Staff, Coordinating Staff, Professional Services Command and the 1st Civil Support Brigade.
Each battalion is divided into companies, corresponding to the boundaries of the six regions of the South Carolina Emergency Management Division.
State Guard members are all volunteers who share a passion for service and an equally strong commitment to their fellow South Carolinians. New and current members receive training at the State Guard’s Military Academy located at the McCrady Training Center in Eastover, S.C.
Francis Marion at Burch’s Mill – William de Hartburn Washington (1833-70)
History of the S.C. State Guard
The South Carolina State Guard has provided protection to South Carolina since 1670 when the Colony’s first military organization, the Charleston Militia, was formed. From its earliest days protecting the residents from pirates, foreign invaders, and Native American raids, this militia was the earliest manifestation of the SC State Guard.
In January of 1775 the South Carolina First Provincial Congress convened in Charleston. The Congress appointed a Committee of Safety whose responsibility included command of the province’s military, and decreed that all inhabitants of the colony should “be diligently attentive in learning the use of arms; and that their officers be requested to train and exercise them at least once a fortnight.” In short order, militia units were organized all over the colony.
Leaders such as Francis “The Swamp Fox” Marion, Thomas Sumter, Andrew Pickens, and organizers of several artillery and naval components, fought scores of engagements against the British during the American Revolution. The SC Militia was also instrumental in taking Florida from Spain in the early 1800s, and individual members fought in the War of 1812 and the Mexican War (1846-48).
Since 2015, the historic State Guard has provided the State of South Carolina in excess of 44,000 hours of professional services when called upon, including deployments for recovery operations after Hurricanes Joaquin, Harvey and Matthew.
As authorized by SC Code of Laws Section 25-3-10, the State Guard is a professional military organization and component of the South Carolina Military Department. Our professionals support a variety of important functions for the state, county and local government units providing disaster relief assistance to communities and local first responder organizations. Since its inception in 1670, members of the SC State Guard have volunteered their time and skills without pay.
From search and rescue operations and medical teams, legal and engineering expertise, chaplain and counseling services to direct distribution of supplies and providing military funeral honors to our veterans, members of the South Carolina State Guard are Trained and Ready to serve when called upon.
For more information about the history of the military in the State of South Carolina, visit the South Carolina Military Museum.