Thursday, July 03, 2008

A visit to Drayton Hall Plantation

View of the Plantation House at Drayton Hall

Drayton Hall, in the Carolina "Low Country" near Charleston, South Carolina, is one of the most handsome examples of Palladian architecture in North America. The house was built for John Drayton, begun in 1738 and completed in 1742, using both free and slave labor. The seven-bay double pile plantation house stands in a 630-acre site that is part of the plantation based on indigo and rice.

Drayton Hall is the only plantation house on the Ashley River to survive the American Revolution and Civil War intact. Seven generations of Drayton heirs preserved the house in all but original condition, though the flanking outbuildings have not survived: an earthquake destroyed the laundry house in 1886 and a hurricane destroyed the kitchen in 1893 [1].

The house has a deep recessed double portico on the west "front" (actually the rear of the dwelling, though this elevation faces the approach from Ashley River Road), shading the house from afternoon sun and offering open-air summer living space. The floor plan of Drayton is Palladian, with a central entrance stair hall, containing a symmetrical divided staircase, backed by a large saloon, flanked by square and rectangular chambers [2]. Pedimented chimneypieces in the house are in the tectonic manner popularized by William Kent. There is fine plasterwork in several of the rooms of the main floor, which is raised above a half-basement.

It was declared a National Historic Landmark in 1960.[1][3]

The South Carolina Department of Archives and History claims that Drayton Hall is "without question one of the finest of all surviving plantation houses in America".[4]

Drayton Hall is managed by the National Trust for Historic Preservation, which opened the house to the public in 1977 and presents both sides of the historic plantation economy exemplified by Drayton, black and white. A first guide to the house, Drayton Hall was published in 2005.

It is located on State Route 61 and is included in the Ashley River Historic District.

It was often considered one of the best gardens in the United States.


Worldman said...

The only thing for to do is to win the jackpot of EuroMillions. And then I would buy this beautiful place. And then you could make a picture again. Of me, standing under the tree.

Anonymous said...

i'm ready to buy this house. do you know the price :)
excellent photography and info

GMG said...

Hi Sue! Another pearl you discovered for us; great post!
Congratulations on the much deserved award! Also loved to see the dolphins Special and the amazing playing with colours!!
Thanks for your comment on Blogtrotter! Wish you a great 4th of July and wonderful weekend!

Carole said...

Great photo Sue. It looks like it has stepped out of the 'Gone with the Wind' movie. Great house indeed.

Susanne49 said...

Hi Peter,

thanks for your creative comment, as usual! :-) To buy a ticket to Charleston is much chaeper than to buy the house...LOL... and then we will go out to Drayton Hall, you can stay under that tree and I'll do the picture of you...o.k.? :-)

Susanne49 said...

Hi Vlahos,

sorry...unfortunatelly I don't know the price. But, do you have a real BIG wallet...? ...LOL...

Susanne49 said...

Hi Gil,

Thanks for your weekly visit, I appreciate all your comments. Thanks so much!

Susanne49 said...

You are IN the movie, Carol....don't you know that? loooks very similar, you're right. :-)

Thanks for your comment.

Anna said...

Wow this is so nice, worth framing. Anna :)

Susanne49 said...

Thank you Anna for visiting my blog.


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