Historic Structures

Description Fenwick Hall Plantation, Johns Island South Carolina

Fenwick Hall is a two-story, brick dwelling set over a full English basement consisting of two distinct parts. The main five-bay section of the house dates to the eighteenth century and measures 45’–6” wide by 38’ deep. A two-story Federalstyle brick addition with octagonal bays is situated at the west end of the original structure. The brickwork of the eighteenth-century section is generally laid in English bond and includes some sections with irregular bond pattern. A water table and raised brick quoins accent the eighteenth-century section. The brickwork of the Federal, Phase II, addition is also English bond, although plainer, featuring only a water table. The roof of the eighteenth-century, Phase I, section of the building is now a low hip, accented with a narrow, modillioned cornice at the eaves. Four interior chimneys set at the gables pierce the roof. A faceted roof covers the octagonal ends of the addition and a Phase II hipped gable roof covers the main volume of the addition. Two interior chimneys rise through the west facet of this hipped section of the roof. The primary, south facing façade of Fenwick Hall is approached by a long alleé of live oak trees.

The primary entrance is centered on the south façade and is comprised of double, paneled doors and a fanlight set into a reproduced surround with triangular pediment and engaged Doric columns. The current double-return brick and stone staircase with an iron railing grants access to the first floor from the roundabout in front and replaced an earlier, late eighteenth-century portico removed during restoration of the house in the 1930s under architect Albert Simmons. Four reconstructed nine-over-nine double-hung sash windows under flat jack arches flank the entry door.

The river-front, north, paired entry doors are approached by a straight run of stone stairs with an iron railing that flares slightly at the base. Two Palladian windows laid up with cut and gauged bricks flank the north entry door. Nine-over-nine double-hung sash windows flanked by six-paned side lights are set in these tripartite openings. Five symmetrically-placed nine-over-nine sash windows set under flat jack arches illuminate the second floor.

The eighteenth-century Phase I first floor plan features a rank of rooms on the eastern side of a narrow stair passage. A northwest chamber and entry hall occupy the three southwest bays of the house. The second floor is comprised of a central hall with two rooms to the east and two to the west. Most rooms retain original raised panel interiors. Georgian details dominate the interior including mantelpieces with Greek key detailing, denticulated cornices, and ornate scrollwork on the stringers of the main staircase.

The Phase II, two-story Federal-style addition to the west contains six-over-six double-hung sash windows on both first and second floors. The interior features north and south rooms accessed on both levels by a central stair hall. A second, twostory, rectangular, Phase III addition was added west of the octagonal addition in the twentieth century. This addition is generally referred to as the Morawetz addition and included increased living space and a modern kitchen. This twentiethcentury campaign, coordinated by architect Albert Simons, also added a one-story veranda on the eastern façade. The covered veranda is supported by Roman style Doric columns and enclosed by an octagonal brick half wall with iron railing that leads to a garden and reflecting pool. The upper story of the veranda features wood Chinese Chippendale railing.

Detached, flanking brick service buildings were erected to the east and west of the main structure in 1750, after the primary volume of Fenwick Hall had been built, but preceding the octagonal addition. The western flanker was constructed to serve as a carriage house with stables and has since been converted into a private residence. The eastern flanker, which is no longer standing, also served as horse stables. Additional buildings have been constructed through the twentieth century, further developing the site of Fenwick Hall. These outbuildings include a caretaker’s residence, a garage, and utility and office buildings.