“Taking in boarders during the 20th century was a routine economic need of many households….”
City Directories and History: The Pettigru Street Historic District is located to the east of the downtown area and contains 88 structures. The majority of the buildings were built between 1910 and 1930 and are of frame and brick construction. The district features a wide variety of building styles, including the Queen Anne and local interpretations of the bungalow and Colonial Revival forms. Many of the streets are tree-lined, and the buildings have common setbacks. Historic District is significant for its wide range of architectural styles, which mirrors the growth of Greenville between 1890 and 1930. Once part of the James Boyce and Rowley family estates, this area was largely unsettled until the turn-of-the-century. Sections of the Boyce estate were subdivided by 1900 and Victorian cottages began to dot the area. Several large tracts were bought by the Parker family and they erected two large homes.
Residential development began on a large scale after the subdivision of the “Boyce Lawn” property in 1907. This area between East North and East Washington was divided into a large number of lots and new streets were established which were named after the faculty members of the Furman Theological Seminary. The district was also the home of many prominent businessmen and mill owners.
The area is unique in the city for its evolution of styles from the Victorian era to 1930. Because of the wide variety of architectural styles, the large neighborhood was nominated to the National Register of Historic Places in 1981. It is the largest historic district in the city. (Courtesy of the Overlook Hist. District History – City of Greenville, S.C.)
R&R Note: Many households in the late 19th and early 20th centuries took in boarders to supplement household incomes. This was a common practice prior to social security and other retirement benefits that were available in post WW II America.
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