About Seneca

History and Geography

Seneca was named for a 1700’s Native American village Esseneca located on the banks of the nearby Seneca River. The City, chartered in 1874 as “Seneca City”, dropped “City” from its name in 1906. It is in Oconee County which takes its name from the Cherokee word “Ae-quo-nee” meaning “land beside the water.” The county has a total area of 674 square miles (1,750 km2), of which 47 square miles (7.0%) is water. The hilly landscape has created a perfect environment for man-made lakes. Oconee County is home to 22 properties and districts on the National Register of Historic Places. 


Seneca and the surrounding area are very affordable, with a cost of living well below the national average. Whether you are looking to rent or buy, options are plentiful in this growing area that includes Seneca, Walhalla, Westminster, Clemson, Central, and Pendleton, all within 30 minutes of the clinic and hospital. See more about what housing our area has to offer here!


The school district of Oconee County is home to 10 elementary schools, 3 middle schools, and 3 high schools. SDOC is the largest employer in Oconee County, with 74 National Board-Certified Teachers, 68% of whom have master’s degrees and above. 

Medical Practice

According to the HRSA Data Warehouse, all of Oconee County is designated as a Health Professional Shortage Area (HPSA) for Primary Care and the entire county is designated as a Medically Underserved Community (MUC). It is also a low income HPSA for mental health. This provides a wide range of educational experiences as well as preparation for a career serving in a rural high needs area.