“Mayor William Ashmead Courtenay purchased this three-and-a-half-story Charleston single house from a trustee acting for Henry Sterling Lebby and his wife, Susan Ann, in 1870. Theodore Jervey probably built the original Greek Revival style house in the 1840s, conveying it to Lebby in the mid-1850s. Courtenay, who came to office in 1879, served as mayor of Charleston at a crucial time in its history. While modernizing city government, he greatly improved the area with new parks, fire and police stations, and a renovated city hall. He envisioned a quality expansion of the city into the northern portion of the peninsula and worked for its recovery after the hurricane of 1885 and the earthquake of 1886. Basically a Greek Revival single house in form, the structure has triple-tiered piazzas that once overlooked a large garden, which was subdivided in the twentieth century. Although the piazzas and the pilastered door screen survive, the front facade of the dwelling was renovated after the earthquake of 1886 with a two-story projecting bay and triple front windows on both levels. The parapeted brick gable was reduced to create a bracketed roof overhang in the Italianate manner. Although rehabilitated many years ago as an apartment, the original separate kitchen dependency survives at 51.5 Montagu Street.”
Information from: The Buildings of Charleston – J.H. Poston for the Historic Charleston Foundation, 1997
Other sources of interest: Charleston Tax Payers of Charleston, SC in 1860-61 and the Dwelling Houses of Charleston by Alice R.H. Smith – 1917 The HCF may also have additional data at: Past Perfect and further research can be uncovered at: Charleston 1861 Census Schedule or The Charleston City Guide of 1872
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