City Directories and History: FRANCIS SILAS RODGERS MANSION; Constructed 1885-87, Daniel G. Wayne, architect
“Francis Rodgers, a wealthy cotton factor and councilman, built this stunning example of the
Second Empire style of architecture. The four-story, 13,883 square- foot house dominates this neighborhood. Especially notable is the mansard roof with cast-iron railing and cupola. Finished with Philadelphia red brick, the dwelling is highlighted by stone lintels and quoins. A detail in the shape of a cotton plant positioned under a bay window clearly reflects Rodgers’s business interests. The property had several outbuildings, including a small gas plant that provided lighting. The house was being planned by Rodgers as early as 1881 but was not completed until after the earthquake of 1886.
Rodgers used the house as his residence until his death in 1911. His obituary stated that “the house in which Mr. Rodgers spent the last years of his life is considered one of the handsomest in the city.” It stayed in the family until 1920, when it was sold to the Scottish Rite Cathedral Association. Atlantic Coast Life Insurance Co. held the building from 1940 until 1996.”
Information from: The Buildings of Charleston – J.H. Poston – Author, for the Historic Charleston Foundation, 1997
R&R NOTE: Mr. Rodgers was highly influencal in many circles but not more so than the firm of Pelzer and Rodgers, one of the largest factors in S.C. See Thread Link icons this page.
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
Also see: Wentworth Mansion and Circa 1886 Restaurant
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