Category Archives: Historic Beaufort

B.B. Sams Family in Beaufort

Many of Beaufort’s sea island planters in the 17 and 1800’s also owned town houses where they would live during the summer social season or visit while attending to business. In the first half of the 17th century, the family of Berners Barnwell “B.B.” Sams was very fond of their home on Datha Island, but much […]

Beaufort’s Mosaic Windows

Previous to the Civil War, the tall building with the prominent white steeple at 911 Craven Street was used as a meeting/lecture/prayer house by members of the Baptist Church of Beaufort (600 Charles Street). The black members preserved a lot of what was in the church when Beaufort was occupied by Union soldiers. For example, […]

The Anchorage House

The Anchorage House is believed to have been built prior to the Revolutionary War, but it’s impossible to determine the actual year of construction. Elaborate Corinthian style columns and haint blue ceilings impress onlookers at 1103 Bay Street in Beaufort SC. As was common in the 1700’s, the building is composed of tabby concrete, a mixture […]

Cobwebs…or Spanish Moss?

The Edward Means house, (604 Pinckney Street in the Old Point Neighborhood) was built in the mid-1850’s by Franklin Talbird, and its finery includes fancy interior woodwork, marble mantels, and an extraordinary floating spiral staircase. During the Civil War, it was used as Union Hospital number 2. A war correspondent for the New York Daily […]

How to Bury Dr. Perry

Many residents of Beaufort feared the possibility of being buried alive. Apparently, during a bad sickness, a patient’s breathing could become so shallow that they appeared to have passed away. Knowing this, Dr. Perry built this above-ground tomb in St. Helena’s graveyard and instructed his relatives, “If I pass away, bury me with a jug of […]

Home of an Actress, a Witch Doctor and a Poet

The Edward Barnwell-Geddes Dowling House (1405 Bay Street) During the Civil War, Union soldiers set up a signal station on the roof of Edward Barnwell’s house. It is located on the bluff of Bay Street- the perfect vantage point for the soldiers to make communications through the passageway of Port Royal Sound to the Atlantic […]

Civil War Bakery

The Cuthbert-Scheper-Simmer House: 915 Port Republic St. You can almost smell bread baking in the basement kitchen of the house at the corner of Charles and Port Republic Streets. When the Union soldiers took over Beaufort in 1861, Lucius Cuthbert and family evacuated to Aiken, SC, leaving the family house to become a bakery for […]

Civil War Graffiti in the Elliott House

George Parsons Elliott built the mansion located on the corner of Bay and Charles Streets (1001 Bay Street) in circa 1844. Guests passed by elegant iron railings and entered through the lovely fanlit doorway to admire the detail-oriented opulence of the interior: breathtaking marble mantels and heavenly gilded cornices and moldings. Dr. William Jenkins acquired […]

The “Castle” in Beaufort, SC

On December 5, 1859, a home builder in Beaufort named J.S. Cooper began construction on the property of Dr. Joseph Fickling Johnson at 411 Craven Street. It can be assumed that this project was to be a masterpiece, designed like a house that existed in England. (Sadly, we cannot see the sister mansion today because […]

“Tuscarora Jack” Barnwell- Founder of Beaufort, SC

In 1701, thirty-year-old John Barnwell grew restless with his privileged life in Dublin, Ireland, and sailed the Atlantic for the English colony called Charles Town. A family friend from home, alderman John Page, commented about his leaving: “out of a humor to goe and travel but for no other Reasson.”[1] But there was reason enough […]