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Storied 1780 home on market for the first time in 100 years for $1.85M

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It was once owned by former slave and tinsmith W.J. Parker

Close-up of front door of old brick house through alley.
12 Tradd Street was built in 1780 and was once owned by former slave and tinsmith W.J. Parker.
Photos via Sotheby’s International Realty

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Location: Charleston, South Carolina

Price: $1,850,000

An incredible brick home in Charleston, South Carolina, has come on the market for the first time in 100 years, and it’s just begging to be restored to its glory days. Built in 1780, the residence has an extraordinary past, including elements of local preservationist history.

But first, we start with W.J. Parker, a slave who, born in 1834, worked under a tinsmith at 12 Tradd Street, the address of the house in question. His owner, Robert Forbes, had taught Parker the trade, as well to read, write, and keep the books—a surprising and illegal move at the time. After the Civil War, Parker became a free man and started working for himself as a “tinner”—at 12 Tradd Street. In 1873, Parker bought the property where he had once been a slave for $1,500 cash. Parker even ran for the state legislature, worked as a banker, and went on to own several properties in the city.

Fast forward many years to 1913, when renowned Charleston preservationist and suffragette Susan Pringle Frost bought the home after Parker’s wife Anna died. She sold it in 1920 to Mary Ravenel, whose great-granddaughter owns it now.

Measuring 3,770 square feet, the three-story boasts a solid brick construction, traditional brick courtyard, and many gorgeous historic details like ornate fireplaces and wood paneling. Still, the four-bedroom four-bath (one of them is a half) needs the attention of a committed preservationist to bring it back to its original condition. Given its storied history, our guess is that it won’t be difficult to find. It’s offered at $1.85M. Have a look.

Via: Sotheby’s International Realty