Hanover House was built between 1714 and 1716 for French Huguenot Paul de St. Julien. It was named in honor of the ruling house of England in appreciation for the country’s acceptance of Huguenot refugees after the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes. The house was originally the centerpiece of Hanover Plantation in Berkeley County, located on one of three 1,000-acre tracts of land granted by the Lords Proprietors in 1688. The French heritage of St. Julien is immortalized in one of the chimneys of the house with the words “Peu a Peu” meaning “Little by Little,” which is the beginning of the adage, “Little by little, the bird builds its nest.”
The design of the house, rare in the state of South Carolina, is significant for its gambrel roof and triple-flute chimneys dominating either end of this one and one-half story structure. The walls of the basement, which are two feet thick, have slots cut in the north foundation indicating that this home was once set up to be a fortress. The interior features fine detailing in rich walnut paneling, giving the house a stately appearance despite its small stature. The massive triple-flute chimneys heated the upper and lower levels of the home, down to the basement with its large warming kitchens.
The house remained in the St. Julien and Ravenel families until around 1940 when the creation of the Santee Cooper Hydroelectric Project threatened to destroy the house, along with countless others, with the creation of Lake Moultrie. With the help of a Works Progress Adminstration grant, funds were allocated for the house to be surveyed by the Historic American Buildings Survey, whose photos are showcased on this page, and deemed significant which aided in the saving of this historic place. The entire house was dismantled piece by piece, numbered and photographed and taken 250 miles away to be reassembled on the campus of Clemson University in Pickens County. The house was relocated once more in 1994 (shown below) to its permanent home in Clemson’s Botanical Gardens. It was furnished by the Spartanburg Committee of the National Society of Colonial Dames of America and is now available for tours.
Hanover House is listed on the National Register:
(St. Julien-Ravenel House) French Huguenot Paul de St. Julien built the house in 1714-1716 on one of three 1,000 acre tracts of land granted in 1688 by the Lords Proprietors to his grandfather, a Huguenot immigrant from Vitre, France. Paul named his plantation “Hanover” for the then ruling house of England, to show his appreciation for that country which had befriended so many Huguenot refugees after the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes. The house, significant for its architecture, is a one and one half story post and beam French Huguenot house on a masonry foundation with a distinctive gambrel roof having an almost flat top section, pedimented dormers, and external end chimneys. Chimneys are pilasterd or shouldered to accommodate upstairs fireplaces. The shingles and siding are cypress and the shutters are batten type. Gun-slots in the north foundation indicated the house was prepared to serve as a small fortress. Hanover House was moved from its original siting in Berkeley County to Clemson University in the 1940s due to the building of a hydroelectric plant that would have inundated the house. Listed in the National Register June 5, 1970.
Hanover House – Historic Pictures
More Pictures of Hanover House
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