City Directories and History: The Brick House at Edisto Island was built about 1725 for Paul Hamilton, a wealthy South Carolina planter whose estate was acquired in 1798 by the Jenkins family which maintains ownership to this day. The Brick House was a
most unusual example of early colonial architecture, in that it illustrated the important influence of the French Huguenots in South Carolina. Possibly a simplified copy of the Chateau de la Haye d’Esquermes (ca. 1675) near Loos les Lille, France, the Brick House was the focal point of a 300 hundred acre plantation.
The brick for the house was imported from Boston where a harder and denser sort than any obtainable locally could be gotten. Sand and gravel, free from salt, were fetched from the Pon Pon, while lumber for the house was housed and seasoned for seven years before being considered worthy for the undertaking. Clearly then this was an exceptional effort on the part of its builder, and its architectural ambitions came to fruition in a building with a distinctively French air, achieved through the many stucco enrichments and its high-pitched roof. Burned to all but its shell in 1929, the brick house today stands as both an artifact of an important early influence in the Carolinas, and a stately and picturesque ruin in its own right. The architecture of the outer walls is unique in this country. Listed in the National Register April 15, 1970; Designated a National Historic Landmark April 15, 1970. [Courtesy of the SC Dept. of Archives and History]
Also posted on FB’s Charleston Before 1945 – Brick House
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