City Directories and History: In plan, elevation, and architectural detail, Mulberry is in the first rank of American architectural landmarks. One of the earliest and most singular colonial plantation houses, Mulberry Plantation (1714) has long defied characterization in a single term. It has been called everything from Jacobean to
Queen Anne to Baroque to early Georgian. Essentially a building with an eclectic uniqueness, Mulberry is a precious example of a single transitional structure which brings together a number of diverse indigenous seventeenth century forms, and creates a new unity which foretells the arrival of the eighteenth century Georgian formality. The plantation house was constructed by Thomas Broughton, Englishman, planter, and later Royal Governor of South Carolina, possibly as early as 1714, but certainly by 1725. The mansion was built over a cellar fort, with firing slits in the
foundation walls. The square central block of the two-story mansion is laid in English bond brickwork, and the gambrelled roof is dormered and hipped above the wind beams, in the Virginia manner. The eaves are flared in the Flemish style, and the end walls have iron anchor ties, such as those used by the Dutch. Mulberry Plantation is the third oldest plantation house in South Carolina and one of the oldest brick dwellings to survive in the Carolinas and Georgia. Listed in the National Register October 15, 1966; Designated a National
Historic Landmark October 9, 1960. [Courtesy of the SC Dept. of Archives and History]
“An earlier house on this site (#48 Society Street), owned by Joseph Sanford Barker of Mulberry Plantation burned in the fire of 1838 long after the site had been conveyed to a trust for the use of Susan Robinson, wife of the builder of numerous houses on Judith Street in Wraggborough. The easternmost portion of the tenements was occupied by a confectioner or baker, George R. Olson, after his purchase of the property in 1 875. Prior to the historic Ansonborough Project the entire first floor of the structure served as a grocery store. In 1964 the present owners purchased the building for the offices that now occupy the first floor of the site.”
Information from: The Buildings of Charleston – J.H. Poston for the Historic Charleston Foundation, 1997
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