City Directories and History: The Poinsett Hotel was one of the first skyscrapers to be constructed in Greenville. Named after Joel R. Poinsett, the Secretary of War under President
Fillmore, the hotel was built on the site of the Mansion House, an 1824 resort hotel. Built in 1925 at a cost of 1.5 million dollars, the Poinsett Hotel was designed by William L. Stoddard, a New York architect, and built by the J.E. Sirrine Company of Greenville. The Poinsett is a twelve-story skyscraper with a narrow rectangular plan and an L-shaped façade. The façade is composed in three parts: a base, an intermediate shaft, and a capital. The four-story base is highlighted by tall arched windows that span the second and third stories. A wide cornice separates the base from the unornamented shaft. A broad frieze with terracotta festoons and urns between small transom windows is above the capital story windows.
A full cornice with dentils and modillion blocks surmounts the frieze. A balustraded parapet is above the cornice. The Poinsett Hotel marks an era of Greenville’s building boom and growth in the 1920s. The hotel featured a ballroom, a convention hall, a main dining room, private dining rooms, a grill room, a lounge, eight to ten shops and stores, and 210 guest rooms, each with a private bath. Listed in the National Register July 1, 1982.
View the complete text of the nomination form for this National Register property. In addition, the Historic Resources of Greenville, ca. 1810-ca. 1930 includes historical background information for this and other related National Register properties.(Courtesy of South Carolina Department of Archives and History)
The hotel originally cost $1,500,000. to construct in 1925.
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IMAGE GALLERY – Courtesy of photographer Bill Segars, 2010