1745 – Charleston, SC – $9,500,000

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Added to OHD on 10/20/20   -   Last OHD Update: 10/20/20   -   22 Comments
For Sale

69 Church St, Charleston, SC 29401

Map: Street

  • $9,500,000
  • 7 Bed
  • 8.5 Bath
  • 8524 Sq Ft
  • 0.29 Ac.
69 Church Street is one of the largest pre-Revolutionary houses in the city, with a grand estate lot stretching back to Ford's Court. Historically and architecturally significant, this Category 1 Georgian double house was built circa 1745, and is notable for its stunning ballroom, drawing room, cypress paneled library, 15 fireplaces, King of Prussia marble fireplace surrounds, delft tiles, bespoke woodwork and moldings, and stucco over brick exterior. The interior reflects the best of both the Georgian and Federal periods, embodying extraordinary examples of fine woodwork throughout on mantles, wainscoting, moldings, and 9 over 9 double sash windows which flood the home with beautiful natural light. The main house follows a traditional double house format, with four principal rooms on each floor, with a centrally located stair hall elegantly rising for four floors. Soaring 11'+ ceilings on three floors and stunning second floor double reception rooms/ballroom complete the grandeur. An unusual feature is that the third-floor ceilings and windows are the same height as those on the first two floors. All bedrooms have en suite bathrooms, another rarity in a historic home. The kitchen building, connected to the main house by a hyphen and butler's pantry, houses a period style kitchen and den, overlooking the gardens through lancet arched windows. There are two bedrooms with two full baths in the original kitchen house, perfect for children, guests, or live-in staff. Located on picturesque Church Street, this house is on one of the highest elevations in the old walled city. Once you step into the home, you are struck by how private and quiet it is. It flows fabulously for entertaining yet retains intimate spaces for reflection and retreat.This large property (.29 acre) has five exquisitely landscaped garden rooms, all surrounded by high brick walls for privacy. Heirloom camelia bushes are large and abundant. The secret garden is charming. Hidden through an opening through towering podocarpus, the large oval pool, one of the first downtown, is set among lush gardens and Gothic-Revival-inspired privies, one of which houses a pool powder bath. A covered trellis room is a focal point at the end of the pool. The far garden room, dominated by pomegranates and citrus, opens onto Ford's Court and has additional off-street parking. The fine property has been the home of several notable South Carolinians. Likely built by Richard Capers, the house was later purchased by Colonel Jacob Motte, who served as treasurer for the colony for 27 years. Meetings of the Commons House of Assembly were held in the house, likely in the second-floor drawing room, prior to the construction of the historic state house in 1791. Motte's son, also Jacob Motte, married Rebecca Brewton, daughter of goldsmith Robert Brewton and sister of Miles Brewton. In 1778, Colonel James Parsons occupied the house. He was a member of the Continental Congress and had been offered the vice presidency of South Carolina before the formation of the United States. The house was extensively damaged during the Civil War. In 1869, the widow Eliza Middleton Huger Smith purchased the property, and restored it. Her granddaughter, Alice Ravenel Huger Smith, became Charleston's first chronicler of the city's architecture and is one of the most celebrated artists of the early 20th century Charleston Renaissance. Many of her watercolors and sketches depict scenes from the windows of 69 Church. Her book, The Dwelling Houses of Charleston, was published in 1917. The house was purchased in 1969 by Anthony and Jessica Cecil, who restored it to its Georgian and Adam period appearance, and eventually ran a bed and breakfast at the house. The current owners purchased the house in 1998 and undertook extensive renovations to bring the house back to its current, and former, glory. It has been meticulously maintained. Rarely does a house of this historic importance come on the market.
Contact Information
Mary Lou Wertz, Maison Real Estate
(843) 813-2933
Links, Photos & Additional Info
Listing details may change after the posted date and are not guaranteed to be accurate.
Independent verification is recommended.

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22 Comments on 1745 – Charleston, SC – $9,500,000

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  1. Cathy F.Cathy F. says: 2262 comments
    OHD Supporter

    1920 Colonial Revival
    Upstate/Central, NY

    Beautiful, lovely, elegant, gracious… And lots of windows, providing lots of natural light. I even would keep the wall colors as is – so pretty, IMO.

  2. CharlestonJohnCharlestonJohn says: 1093 comments
    OHD Supporter

    Charleston, SC

    Well this is what $10 Mil gets you in the Holy City these days. In fairness, it is a special house even within a city filled with special houses. The lower Church St. location is one of the best spots in the desirable South of Broad neighborhood.

  3. Leah SLeah S says: 161 comments
    OHD Supporter


    Stunning. 15 fireplaces … 5 landscaped garden rooms … oh my!

  4. Angie boldly going nowhereAngie boldly going nowhere says: 673 comments
    OHD Supporter

    I love everything about this house. I can’t even begin to imagine living there amidst all that grandeur. I would not change a thing. This is certainly an old house dream. Wow, it’s speechless I am.

  5. messengerjsmessengerjs says: 47 comments
    Salisbury, MD

    Wow! Exquisite.

  6. GretchenGretchen says: 57 comments
    OHD Supporter

    New Orleans, LA

    Perfection. I don’t know where I could possibly begin and will leave it at that.

  7. RanunculusRanunculus says: 148 comments
    OHD Supporter

    Tucson, AZ

    SPECTACULAR!!! Simply perfection!

  8. LadyTexasLadyTexas says: 198 comments
    OHD Supporter

    1979 Traditional
    Plano, TX

    It’s no wonder we’re enchanted with Charleston!

  9. Sandy BSandy B says: 832 comments
    OHD Supporter

    2001 craftsman farmhouse
    Bainbridge Island, WA

    Simply Lovely Property in a gem of a city. As always I do find regretful overly sanded/refinished old floors, but that does not diminish how special this house is. Years ago three friends and I rented a similar kitchen house for a week when a friend of ours was then Executive Director of Historic Charleston Foundation. Needless to say we got a royal tour of properties…even private ones….what a week that was…!!!
    The garden reminded me of a book I found in my stash I’d never yet read….most charming read that urges me to return to Charleston. I won’t describe it here, but if you like gardens and a sweet family history of gardeners, do check it out.


  10. JpedigoJpedigo says: 177 comments

    The detail, the decor, the history, the gardens…what’s not to love?

  11. MichaelMichael says: 2841 comments
    1979 That 70's show
    Otis Orchards, WA

    Wow! Beautiful home! I can’t help but keep looking at those beautiful floors.

  12. StacyStacy says: 477 comments
    1900 Maybe Craftsmen

    Almost speechless & searching for every right word… A beautiful, totally awesome dream!! Wow I love this!! EVERYTHING about it!!

  13. OldHouseLoverFromSCOldHouseLoverFromSC says: 19 comments
    OHD Supporter

    1852 Colonial
    Charleston, SC

    There is a lot to love in this stunning home and in our beautiful, historic city of Charleston. If you haven’t been here before, come visit soon!

    • RanunculusRanunculus says: 148 comments
      OHD Supporter

      Tucson, AZ

      Charleston’s been on my bucket list for far too long. This listing has pushed it to the top of my “As Soon As It’s Safe Enough” travel destinations.

  14. KarenBKarenB says: 321 comments
    1885 KY farm center chimney cape style

    Oh, my. This home is simply jaw dropping. It is not hard to envision the belles of Charleston society floating along those highly polished floors in their lusciously opulent gowns. I love the round pool. I can’t even begin to imagine how it would feel to step out the front door of this house and take a stroll down the walk among the history embedded within the walls of the neighboring houses.

  15. ctmeddctmedd says: 392 comments

    What a fantabulously grand home! Wow!

  16. TorgyTorgy says: 185 comments
    1964 Brick Ranch
    Denver, CO

    I commend the Realtor on the description of this property. Well said with every opulent word to describe the beauty and exquisite character. Even so, I was awe-struck to take a visual walk around this highly beautiful home. If these walls could talk, oh the stories. Those gardens are incredible. Well done to all of the caretakers of this glorious mansion. Well done, indeed.

  17. JullesJulles says: 526 comments
    OHD Supporter

    Not trying to be a stinker because this house is an absolute dream (here comes the but) but unless the woodwork was meant to be painted if I had that kind of money, I would remove the paint. I think it would be a whole different kind of glorious with wood paneled rooms everywhere. That way it would have a more historic feel to me. Also I would put a big old copper double slipper bathtub in the master.


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