CLEMSON — Clemson University’s department of historic properties will commemorate the 300th anniversary of Hanover House with a free Holiday Open House from 1 to 4 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 17.

Mari Noorai, the coordinator for holiday decorations at Clemson University’s historic Hanover House, places decorations on a table.

Mari Noorai, the coordinator for holiday decorations at Clemson University’s historic Hanover House, places decorations on a table.
Image Credit: Ken Scar / Clemson University

Foothills Garden Club members decorated the house with fresh greenery from the South Carolina Botanical Garden, where the house is located. During this celebration, the Joyful Harps musical group will perform colonial and other traditional music and play the home’s 200 year-old Kirkman piano while guests have refreshments.

Visitors also can tour the house and learn more about its place in South Carolina and Clemson University history.

Hanover House was built in 1716 for French Huguenot Paul de St. Julien in Berkeley County. It was planned as a three-story, brick and cypress house and was considered very luxurious at the time. The original design was simple, featuring balanced symmetry, a gambrel roof, dormers and French details. St. Julien honored his French heritage in the mortar of one chimney where he inscribed “Peu a Peu,” from the French proverb, “Little by little the bird builds its nest.”

Garland from the South Carolina Botanical Garden adorns the exterior of the Hanover House.

Garlands made from plants in the South Carolina Botanical Garden adorn the exterior of the Hanover House.
Image Credit: Ken Scar

The house remained in the St. Julien and Ravenel families for nearly 150 years. In the 1940s, progress threatened to destroy the home, as it was in the path of the man-made Lake Moultrie. The Historic American Buildings Survey of the Santee-Cooper basin noted that Hanover was of national significance. So Hanover House was moved 250 miles north to the campus of Clemson University, home to the state’s architecture school. It was relocated to the South Carolina Botanical Garden in 1994 and now overlooks an heirloom vegetable garden.

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