Historic Charleston Foundation logo

images banner
images banner small

Archive Record

  • Email This Page
  • Send Feedback
Title 14 Legare Street (Simmons-Edwards House a/k/a Pineapple Gate House)
Object Type Property File
Scope & Content Constructed ca. 1800; present garden 1950; variously altered 20th century. Known as Edwards-Smyth House, Simmons-Edwards House, Pineapple Gate House. Francis Simmons, a Johns Island planter, constructed this dwelling as his townhouse in about 1800. It is one of a group of masonry, Neoclassical single houses of this decade (including 18 Meeting Street and 51 East Bay) that are related in scale, fenestration, exterior brickwork, marble detailing, wood trim profiles, and interior plasterwork. Simmons also owned an earlier wooden house on the site of the present garden. At his death in 1814, his appraisers completed a room-by-room inventory listing furniture in "the back room on the first or ground floor," "the first room on the first floor" (the dining room), the "Passage way of the lst floor," "the Drawing Room on the 2nd. Floor," "Passage on the 2d. floor," "the chamber opposite the drawing on the 2nd Floor or drawing room chamber," "the small room on the 2nd floor of the Drawing room chamber," "the Back chamber on the 3rd. Floor," "the front room on the 3rd. floor," and "the back Garret." The large brick gates with decorative wrought-iron panels were installed during the ownership of George Edwards, who acquired the house in 1816, and bear his initials. The brickwork is one of several examples in Charleston of true English tuckpointing with the mortar tinted red to straighten visual lines of the irregularly shaped bricks and a white lime mortar joint added within a recess in the tinted mortar. The stone pineapple finials dating from the Edwards occupancy were carved to resemble Italian pinecones. Although said to have been carved in Italy, they may be the work of an Italian mason working in Philadelphia, as it is known that Charlestonians were ordering marble work from Philadelphia in this period. The original 2-story kitchen building and 1½-story carriage house survive, the former joined to the main house by a series of late-19th century hyphens. The plan of the 19-century garden is unknown, but the owners of the 1950s engaged Umberto Innocenti to design the current formalistic garden at the rear of the site, reusing the stone posts with spherical finials and the hexagonal summerhouse already in the garden. (Poston, Buildings of Charleston.)

Four files contain documentation of the easement on the property including related correspondence and Confirmation of Understanding; Part I certification (National Register); easement appraisal report; legal documents pertaining to the bankruptcy proceedings of the easement donor; annual inspection reports, requests for alterations, and correspondence related to the management of the property; archaeology reports and related documentation; garden reconstruction information; "Architectural Conservation Manual"; FOHG house histories (misc. dates and some undated); other narrative histories including "Preliminary Research Report on the History of the Grounds of No. 14 Legare" by C. Allan Brown for Glenn Keyes (Aug. 2000) and "The Simmons-Edwards House, 14 Legare Street: A History" by Robert Stockton (1990); newspaper, magazine, and book articles (about the house [including 1975 DYKYC] and about the easement donor Andrew Crispo); historical/chain-of-title research information; HABS and other architectural drawings; mortgage plat (1990); report "Espalier Exegesis" by C. Allan Brown (Dec. 14, 2001) and newspaper articles about the trellis; information about the symbolism of the pineapple; Rosen and Associates inspection report (1990).

See Easement Documentation Photo Files for easement donation photographs (Exh. B to Deed of Conservation Easement) and Covenant/Easement Inspection Photo Files for inspection photography.
Subjects Historic buildings--South Carolina--Charleston
Search Terms Legare Street
Easement Property
Eighteenth-Century Expansion
National Register of Historic Places
Physical Description 1 Gift Folder
1 Management Folder
2 History/Miscellaneous Folders

1 File Folder

1 Covenant/Management Folder
1 History/Miscellaneous Folder

1 Gift Folder
1 Management Folder
1 History/Miscellaneous Folder
Related Records Show Related Records...
Object ID # LEGARE.014.1