McCullough’s Cedarhurst restoration begins!

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Moonville, Piedmont, Fork Shoals, Local

September 4, 2023 by Moonville Mae - Views: 55

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McCullough’s Cedarhurst restoration begins!

Fork Shoals Historical Society is restoring the 1812 inn at Princeton to its original look. You will notice the changes as you drive by. She is the oldest brick structure in Greenville County. We started on Friday, August 4th, by removing the additions added in the 1900s. The brick will be repointed starting in October thanks to Jay West, our state representative, and the Greenville County Delegation!  Be sure to thank them when you see them!

CAD drawing of McCullough’s Cedarhurst with
probable outbuildings by Kyle Campbell

How stately the house is looking already! Her original brick Federal style was built by George Grace, a mason who also built important buildings in Laurens, Pendleton, and Georgia, and who was a friend of Joe McCullough’s.  But we do not have any drawings of the original plans for construction or for the room’s layout.  This is a conundrum for me, because I feel that it could be a plan published by Robert Mills, the famous first American born architect from Charleston.  Mills

published and sold plan books between 1800 and 1820 while he was studying in and around Washington, DC, where he married into a prominent Smith family that also had connections to South Carolina.  The plan books might verify my suspicion, and I have been looking for them even asking a friend, Jorge Perez-Rubio, to tackle this research while he was in Washington for the summer.  His work at the Smithsonian produced no copies of the plan books.  So, now we are looking for possible South Carolina collections that could give us the evidence we need.  If you know of private collections or museum collections that could help, please contact me.


A beekeeper came and saved 
the hive last winter.

Photo Kyle Campbell of
Preservation South

Someone asked if there was a picture of McCullough’s Cedarhurst in its original form. No, there isn’t, because cameras weren’t available in the first part of the 1800s, and we only have evidence of her shape from a plat in the 1830s. From that document, we know the house was of the Federal Style popular at the time. There are no paintings or drawings from this early time either.  There is a watercolor of the house in about 1895 after the addition of the conservatory and

full-length double porches which were again changed in the remodel in 1930.  We do know that another house was built like Cedarhurst by a family friend in 1819 which still stands 20 miles to the south. It is called Stoney Point, and it was restored 10 or so years ago. Thus, using this house as a model and the basis of the solid brick walls, we can go back to the basic structure, study other historic Federal porch designs, and finally craft a probable plan.  In the current picture, you can see what a stately home/inn she was and will be again.

Cedarhurst will be open to the public as a house museum and garden. Fork Shoals Historical Society has many plans to support the history of Southern Greenville County through this historic inn on the old drover’s road to Augusta.  Join us in our work.

To receive the news of this preservation project, go to the Fork Shoals Historical Society’s posts on our Facebook page. Also, join in the work by donating or purchasing a copy of our book, Highway 25 in the Carolinas.  

We have sponsors for all the windows, and when the brick is completed, the windows will be replaced. But we still need a new roof to complete the stabilization of the exterior.  Please help make this happen!■

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