This rural community grew up around the plantation of John Hopkins (1739-1775). Hopkins, a native of Virginia, settled here in 1764. A surveyor and planter, he was later a delegate to the First Provincial Congress of 1775. Between 1836 and 1842, when the South Carolina RR line from Kingville to Columbia was completed, a turntable was named "Hopkins' Turnout" for the family.
The Hopkins' Turnout post office opened in 1849. After the Civil War many freedmen, freedwomen, and their families settled in the area, some farming land they had purchased during Reconstruction from the S.C. Land Commission. The completion of the Wilmington, Columbia, & Augusta RR in 1871 expanded area markets, until the agricultural depression of the 1920s weakened the local economy.