William Elliott House, "The Anchorage" – 1103 Bay Street, Beaufort SC

Built in: 1800

Remodeled in the early 1900s Local tradition has long held that William Elliott built this house prior to the Revolution, although stylistic evidence suggests a construction date closer to 1800. On the eve of the Civil War it was lived in by William Elliott III, a remarkable man well-known as an agriculturist, author, sportsman, politician and poet. He was one of the most respected men in the state, in spite of his unpopular political views. While he was strongly pro-Southern and in favor of slavery, he opposed Secession, and resigned his seat in the Senate rather than vote for Nullification. He regarded Robert Barnwell Rhett, leader in the Secession movement, as “unscrupulous” and “malignant.” His was one of the voices of restraint heard in the town. He remained a staunch Unionist until the war broke  out he, like Robert E. Lee, went along with his state. During the occupation of Beaufort the house was used as a hospital and designated as the Mission House. It was greatly altered in the early 1900s by a retired Naval officer, Admiral Beardsley. He spent $80,000 remodeling it, adding stucco to the exterior and much ornately carved woodwork to the interior. After his time, the house was used as a guest house for many years. Threatened by demolition, “The Anchorage” was saved by Historic Beaufort Foundation, which, with the aid of a small group of friends, purchased the property. Subsequently resold, it is protected by a restrictive covenant.

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