Encyclopædia Britannica, Ninth Edition/Columbia (1.)
COLUMBIA, the capital of South Carolina, United States of North America, is a city of nearly 10,000 inhabitants. It lies on the east bank of the Congaree River, just below its junction with the Broad and Saluda, and is 124 miles N.N.W. of Charleston, the principal seaport of the State. It is noted for its salubrity and the natural beauty of its site and surroundings. As the capital and political centre of the State, it has held a position second only in importance to Charleston, and has been the home of many distinguished men. Several public institutions enhance its dignity. Among these are the South Carolina College, founded in 1804, with which the late Professor Francis Lieber was long officially connected, the asylum for the insane, a theological school, the State-house, court-house, &c. It is the terminus of three railroads which connect it with Charleston and the sea-coast, and with points west and north, and is also the head of steamboat navigation on the River Congaree. A fertile agricultural region surrounds it, and it enjoys a fair degree of commercial prosperity. Near the close of the civil war (1865), the Union army of General Sherman entered the city, being feebly opposed by the Confederates. During the Federal occupation, fires were set—whether by invaders or defenders has never been determined beyond doubt—by which many buildings and a large amount of property were destroyed.