1. Henry Middleton (d. 1846) had 686 slaves working on a rice plantation in Beaufort-Prince William, but he was ranked 7th overall in SC in 1850.
2. Joseph Blake (d. 1865) had 610 slaves on a rice plantation in Beaufort-Prince William, ranking number eight in all of SC for 1850.
3. Nathaniel Heyward (d. 1851) had 286 slaves on a rice plantation; Beaufort-Prince William. He ranked number one for total slaves in SC for 1850 too.
The Top Ten cash crops in 1850 in South Carolina were:
1. Rice (seven of top ten)
2. Cotton (two)
3. Sugar (1)
Middleton Place, July 2006.
1860 – Largest plantations (by slaves) in Beaufort region.
1. Joseph Blake (d 1865) had two plantations; one in Prince William and one in St. Peter; He had 545 rice slaves in the former and 74 in the later. He was the the largest in South Carolina overall.
2. John I. Middleton (heir to Henry’s estate; d. 1877) had two plantations by then too. He had 520 rice slaves in Prince-William. He was the 2nd largest planter in South Carolina overall.
3. William H. Heyward (d. 1889, was heir to his father Nathaniel) had 386 rice slaves in Prince William; and another 136 in St. Peter. He was the 4th largest planter in all of South Carolina.
Source: Masters of the Big House, Kauffman.