Farmers' and Exchange Bank

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Farmers' and Exchange Bank
Farmers and Exchange Bank (Charleston).jpg
Farmers' and Exchange Bank
Farmers' and Exchange Bank is located in South Carolina
Farmers' and Exchange Bank
Farmers' and Exchange Bank is located in the United States
Farmers' and Exchange Bank
Location141 E. Bay St., Charleston, South Carolina
Coordinates32°46′39.5″N 79°55′38″W / 32.777639°N 79.92722°W / 32.777639; -79.92722Coordinates: 32°46′39.5″N 79°55′38″W / 32.777639°N 79.92722°W / 32.777639; -79.92722
ArchitectEdward C. Jones; Francis D. Lee
Architectural styleMoorish Revival, Exotic Revival, Other
Part ofCharleston Historic District (#66000964)
NRHP reference #73001685
Significant dates
Added to NRHPNovember 7, 1973[1]
Designated NHLNovember 7, 1973[2]
Designated NHLDCPOctober 9, 1960

The Farmers' and Exchange Bank is a historic commercial building at 141 East Bay Street in Charleston, South Carolina. Built in 1853–54, it is an architecturally distinctive building, with Moorish Revival features rarely seen in the United States. The building is recognizable for its use of muqarnas—characteristic of Persian and North African architecture—as well as its large arched windows and striking red sandstone facade. It was declared a National Historic Landmark in 1973.[2][3][4]

Description and history[edit]

The Farmers' and Exchange Bank is located on the west side of East Bay Street in the Charleston Historic District. It is a two-story masonry structure, built out of brick and multiple shades of brownstone, with stucco finish. Its main facade is three bays wide, each bay taken up by a tall arched opening with Moorish features. The first floor openings have a contoured shape, with circular windows above entries with intricately carved doors. The second-floor openings are similar, with the upper circular portion having a scalloped edge, and the arches filled with large multi-pane fixed windows.[4]

The building was designed by Edward C. Jones and Francis D. Lee, both Charleston architects, and was completed in 1854. Its design is probably based on depictions of Moorish architecture published in Washington Irving's The Alhambra, which was published around that time. It was for some time thought to have been influenced by the Regency architecture of Great Britain, specifically the "Hindu" influence of buildings of that period such as the Royal Pavilion in Brighton, but the architects have been judged unlikely to have been exposed to such influences.[4]

The structure was considered for demolition in the early 1970s but Charleston banker Hugh Lane Sr. contributed $50,000 toward its restoration.[5]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ National Park Service (2007-01-23). "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service.
  2. ^ a b "Farmers' and Exchange Bank". National Historic Landmark summary listing. National Park Service. Archived from the original on 2011-06-06. Retrieved 2008-03-07.
  3. ^ "Farmers' and Exchange Bank, Charleston County (141 E. Bay St., Charleston)". National Register Properties in South Carolina listing. South Carolina Department of Archives and History. Retrieved 2008-03-07.
  4. ^ a b c Tray Stephenson and Bernard Kearse (April 19, 1973). "National Register of Historic Places Inventory-Nomination: Farmers' and Exchange Bank" (pdf). National Park Service. and Accompanying one photo, exterior, undated (32 KB)
  5. ^ "SC Structure Drew Inspiration from Washington Irving", Cotton Boll Conspiracy, July 14, 2017

External links[edit]