James Island is one of South Carolina's most urban Sea Islands. The island is separated from peninsular downtown Charleston by the Ashley River, from the mainland by Wappoo Creek and the Wappoo Cut, and from Johns Island by the Stono River. It lies inshore of Morris Island and Folly Beach.
Fort Sumter is located on an island just off the eastern tip of James Island and is the site of the first battle of the Civil War, and Fort Johnson is located on the eastern portion of James Island. For much of the period before and after the formation of the United States, James Island land was largely agricultural with Sea Island cotton plantations covering much of the island. Growth accelerated after World War II and James Island became a suburban bedroom community to Charleston.
Charleston is the oldest and second-largest city in the southeastern State of South Carolina. Founded in 1670 as Charles Towne in honor of King Charles II of England, Charleston adopted its present name in 1783. Known for its rich history, well-preserved architecture, distinguished restaurants, and mannerly people, Charleston has received a large number of accolades, including "America's Most Friendly City" by Travel + Leisure in 2011 and in 2013 and 2014 by Condé Nast Traveler, and also "the most polite and hospitable city in America" by Southern Living magazine.