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Rainbow Row Piazzas and Gardens

October 23, 2021 @ 2:00 pm - 5:00 pm


Historic Charleston Tours

Guests will visit 4-6 private Piazzas and Gardens. No interiors are included this year. At the transition of East Battery to East Bay Street is Rainbow Row, a collection of 18th century buildings constructed by merchants for residences and places of business and the longest cluster of Georgian row houses in the US. In the depression following the Civil War, those buildings on East Bay Street, along the Battery, became neglected and dilapidated and were considered a slum. By the early 20th century, however, they became a focus of early preservation endeavors. In the 1920s Susan Pringle Frost bought six of the buildings but lacked the money to restore them and subsequently sold them to like-minded preservationists.  In 1931, however, Dorothy Porcher Legge and her husband Judge Lionel Legge led the way in rehabilitating these icons as dwellings. “Rainbow Row” derives its name from the tradition Mrs. Legge initiated when she painted her house a vibrant pastel  based on a colonial Caribbean color scheme. Other owners followed suit, creating the rainbow of pastel colors you see today.

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