From the earliest times, it had been known as Buena Vista. The origin of the name is unknown. This section was centered on what is today the crossroads of Pelham Road, SC Highway 14, and Batesville Road. The land changed hands several times between 1810 and 1833. William Bates and Joshua Kilgore formed a partnership for a factory called, the Buena Vista Factory. Bates later opened another textile mill at the shoals of Rocky Creek called Batesville and the community was named the same. Five-pound packages of yarn were used as legal tender in an area short on money. Records from the post office show that between 1830 and 1860 around 400 people were in this area. Several structures dating from this period still survive: The William Bates House and one remaining house built for mill workers probably between 1812 and 1830.
In the mid 1840’s Mr. Bates became partners with Thomas Cox and Henry P. Hammett to form William Bates and Company. In 1863, the Batesville Mill was sold in confederate currency to a Charleston, S. C. group. With the collapse of the confederacy, the mill returned to Bates’ ownership. William Bates died in 1872 and is buried in what is now the Ebenezer United Methodist Church cemetery. Henry Hammett continued the mill’s operation after his death. The Civil War and Reconstruction dealt a blow to the prosperity of Buena Vista. In 1879, the mill was sold to George Putnam, owner of Camperdown Mills on the Reedy River in Greenville. After his death, his daughter, Mary Putnam Gridley, assumed the management of Batesville Mill, becoming the only woman president of a cotton mill in the south. Mrs. Gridley successfully ran the mill until the early 1900’s.
The mill changed hands several times until the late 1920’s when it closed as a cotton mill. In the early 1970’s it became a restaurant, The Old Mill Stream. The Old Batesville Mill then became Fatz Café, which burned in 1998.
In 1830, Mr. Arthur Barnwell, native of South Carolina, had become wealthy in Pelham, New York. Mr. Barnwell bought the factory at Buena Vista and renamed the mill town and mill, “Pelham”. In 1880, he completed his home, a beautiful Queen Ann style house, across the river from the mill. The house, now a Bed and Breakfast Inn, still stands today. The Pelham Manufacturing Co. remained in operation until 1935. After the closure of both the Pelham and Batesville Mills, the activity of the Buena Vista area began to decrease. Many former employees went to work in factories in Greenville, Greer, and Simpsonville. By the early 1960’s Buena Vista was a quiet farming community with few reminders of the industrial past.
In the early 1970’s a site on Batesville Road was chosen by the school district for a new elementary school to serve the burgeoning East Side. A district-wide contest was held in 1983 for the district elementary school students to compete to name the new school.