The Darlington County Historical Commission was created by an Act of Legislature June 18, 1965. The Historical Commission came out of the old Darlington County Historical Society, a private group dating from 1938 and still active as a club. In the late 50's this Society became very active in historical work, and did an in-depth survey of sites over the county that were historic and should be marked, by state-approved historical markers then about $300 each.
Shortly after the Commission was created in 1965, it was assigned a small room in the brand new court house, along with a desk and chair; as a member of the Society, and just having helped with the publication of a county History, Mr. Horace Rudisill was asked by the Historical Commission Board to join them as paid Director.
From the very first, Mr. Rudisill began to collect historical facts and statistics on Darlington County. Gifts of historical material were collected and brought by Mr. Rudisill and different people. The materials grew immensely so by 1984 the commission was offered this building, which was the old vacant county jail.
Through the years, the Darlington County Historical Commission has become more of a county archives and early information center and is now incorporating storage and preservation of all types of written records relating to the county. The Commission houses all the old courthouse records prior to 1900. Probate Records from 1900 through 1922 have just been moved. The Commission also manages the Jacob Kelly House, a historic home in Hartsville.