When a major earthquake struck the area in 1886, only the bell tower was left of St. George's Church. The quake almost destroyed all that remained, splitting the tower up the middle.

Clarence Edward Dutton, The Charleston Earthquake of August 31, 1886. (Washington, GPO; extract from ninth annual report of the director, Dept. of the Interior, USGS, 1887-1888; reprint. ed., Washington: US Department of the Interior, 1979), pp. 297-298, 300 photograph.

Read how the 1886 Earthquake damaged the Bell Tower.