James Simmons House

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The James Simmons House at 37 Meeting St., Charleston, South Carolina

The James Simmons House is a late 18th-century house at 37 Meeting Street, Charleston, South Carolina which was, at one time, the most expensive house sold in Charleston. It was likely built for James Simmons, a lawyer.[1] By 1782, it was home to Robert Gibbes, a planter. Louisa Cheves (later McCord), a prominent antebellum writer, was born at the house on December 3, 1810.[2] In 1840, Otis Mills, the owner of the Mills House Hotel, bought the house for $9,000. In October 1862, during the Civil War, the house was loaned to Gen. Pierre Beauregard, who used the house as his headquarters until August 1863.[3] In 1876, Michael P. O'Connor, later a member of Congress, bought the house.[4]

The house is a traditional Charleston double house (i.e., four rooms per a floor at the corners with a central hall and staircase) but, unlike most, has matching two-story bay windows on the front façade, perhaps an early 19th-century alteration to an originally flat-faced building.[4]

It was the most expensive house sold in Charleston when it sold for $7.37 million in May 2009. It remained the most expensive house sold in Charleston until August 2015, when the Col. John Ashe House at 32 South Battery sold for about $7.72 million.[5] The house was bought by William and Nancy Longfellow from the founder of Blackbaud and majority owner of the Charleston Battery soccer team Anthony and Linda Bakker.[6]


  1. ^ Smith, Daniel Elliott Huger (1917). The Dwelling Houses of Charleston, South Carolina. J.B. Lippincott Co. pp. 89–90. 
  2. ^ Fought, Leigh (2003). Southern Womanhood and Slavery. University of Missouri Press. p. 14. 
  3. ^ "Meeting Street (1-42)". Charleston County Public Library. Archived from the original on November 12, 2013. Retrieved November 12, 2013. 
  4. ^ a b Ravenel, K. "Do You Know Your Charleston?". Charleston News & Courier. p. 10. Retrieved November 12, 2013. 
  5. ^ McDermott, John (August 19, 2015). "Historic Charleston home fetches a record price for downtown". Post and Courier. Charleston, South Carolina. Retrieved August 21, 2015. 
  6. ^ "James Simmons House sells for more than $7 million". Charleston Post & Courier. May 15, 2009. Retrieved November 11, 2013. 

Coordinates: 32°46′23″N 79°55′51″W / 32.773000°N 79.930790°W / 32.773000; -79.930790