The History of Drayton Hall in South Carolina


Drayton hall refers to a building that is on a plantation that was constructed between 1747 and 1752. The building was built by John Drayton who bought the property in 1738 from a Mr. John Greene. John Drayton died in 1779 at which point the house passed into the ownership of Rebecca Drayton who was the fourth wife of John Drayton. Four years later she sold the house to her step son Charles Drayton. When Charles Drayton died, the house then fell under the ownership of his son, named Charles II Drayton. The son, Charles II, died in 1844 and the property remained in the family for a further seven generations.

Early History

Many slaves did work on the plantation during the time before emancipation. The lives of these slaves were interwoven with the lives of the Drayton’s. Much of the building and maintenance was a testament to the efforts of those Africans who lived, unfortunately, as slaves on the plantation.

The property was sold in 1974 to the National Trust for Historic Preservation. Today it is a National Historic Landmark and one of the very few plantation houses that are still standing today. It is used today as a historical museum in which guided tours are given. Many similar houses were destroyed during the American civil war. Although the original house has survived and still stands in remarkably good condition, the two buildings that were on the sides of the house were destroyed by natural disasters, namely a hurricane and an earthquake. These separate buildings were the kitchen and laundry house. Even though the flanking buildings are gone, it is still a good place to visit since it is so rich in history.

Modern Day

Drayton hall is in the city of Charleston, South Carolina.

The building has a portico on the western side, and the building in general is built in the Palladian architectural style with its reddish bricks with white edgings on the windows. It has a beautiful and classical European look to it. The house has a first and second floor as well as a basement. The house also has beautiful carved wood inside and the original plaster is still intact from when the building was first built. Drayton hall has not been restored but simply preserved and there is no furniture inside so one can really look at the actual craftsmanship of the walls, doors, windows, floors, and ceilings. The house has been left in its original condition and is one of the few buildings built before the Revolutionary War that still stands in its original state today. It is located on land on which there are some beautiful live Oaks.

Drayton hall is a very interesting part of the history of the southern part of the United States and many people who have visited have had a good experience on the guided tour that is given. As dark as the history of Drayton hall may be, it is important to be aware of and to learn from. It is now used for events and conferences as well.

Comments are closed.