This Building Has History ™
Name: U.S. Post Office / Gettys Center
Architect: James A. Wetmore
Builder: Batson – Cook Company
This lot was originally divided into two. A deed produced in 1869 reveals the western part to have been sold by A.T. Black to a Squire Hugh Simpson, a cabinet maker, in the 1850’s, who then deeded the property to Dr. Isaiah Simpson. Dr. Simpson sold the lot to John J. Roach in 1870 for $500. The eastern section was purchased from Black by Mr. Silas Shelby Elam, who built a frame house there. Financial troubles led Mr. Elam to lose the property, which was purchased by Mr. Roach. John Roach now owned both properties, and his family had their home on the land for many years.
In 1903, Mr. Roach’s daughters sold the house and property to the U.S. government. The house was a torn down, and a new post office building erected. The Roach family built a new house on the rear portion on the lot, but 27 years later, the U.S. Post Office needed more space, and acquired their land through legal proceedings. The Roach house was rolled to a new foundation, where the parking lot of St. John’s Methodist Church now stands. The home was demolished after the death of the last member of the family.
Around 1930, the old post office building was moved to Oakland Avenue, next door to St. John’s Methodist. The person hired to move the building was the talented D.B. Stearnes of Charlotte, N.C., who did so without even cracking the plastering. A new federal building was built on the old site, including a new and larger post office, and a Federal courtroom on the second floor.
Roots and Recall LLC, The City of Rock Hill, The York County Arts Council, & The S.C. Arts Commission which receives support from the National Endowment for the Arts and by a generous award from the John and Susan Bennett Memorial Arts Fund of The Coastal Community Foundation of South Carolina.
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