This blog is a tribute to this grand home and all those who who have ties to Laurelwood. As the grandaughter of Jasper Hampton Campbell who purchased Laurelwood in 1908, I have many wonderful memories as a young child visiting Laurelwood. We fondly called it "The Big House". There were Easter egg hunts on the front lawn, Christmas celebrations, Sunday dinners, and a lot of time rocking in the rocking chairs on the front porch as my aunts shared stories about life on the Laurelwood plantation. They talked to us about their experiences and shared stories that their parents told them of life and happenings in the lower richland area. Many of these stories have been forgotten. I hope to bring these great stories back to life and preserve them just as Laurelwood is being brought back to life and preserved. There are hidden treasures to be revealed. A legacy to be handed down and passed on.
Let me help you look past the physical imperfections that you notice on first glance to see the hidden beauty that's just waiting to be revealed once again. The stories and information shared here will link the past to the present. There is much to be learned and many memories to share so that all can see the true beauty of ....Laurelwood.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

The Loveliness of Laurelwood

The loveliness of Laurelwood is emerging once again.  Breathtakingly beautiful!!! 
Painting & window restoration
Her beauty that has been hidden for a time is being uncovered layer by layer.  The process of restoring such a rare treasure takes a unique approach and must be handled delicately with great craft and skill.  In other words, the process of restoration does not happen overnight!
Original wood and windows were salvaged
Restoration is defined as 1. The return of something that was removed, or the restoring of something to it’s former condition 2. Something, especially a building, that has been brought back to an earlier and usually better condition. (Taken from the Encarta World English Dictionary) 

I believe that when the restoration of Laurelwood is complete the grand lady will be stronger, more vibrant and beautiful than ever.

New porch, smooth and level
I shudder when I think of what could have happened to Laurelwood had not the Palmetto Trust intervened and sought preservation.  I shudder when I think what may have happened had the new owners not purchased the property when they did.  The report from the workers who secured the foundation was that Laurelwood had been most likely 6 months away from collapsing!
Securing the foundation
 I am so grateful that the new owners acted with urgency and prevented this much loved piece of South Carolina history and my families history from being lost forever.

I have been given a precious gift by the new owners of Laurelwood.  They have allowed me to watch the restoration take place.  Most importantly they are allowing those of us who have family ties and connections to Laurelwood to have an annual gathering every year. I have been given the privilege of planning the event! This year will be the 2nd annual gathering at the Big House. I hope to have details soon so be sure to check back.

Windows lovingly restored
The preservation of historic properties are of the utmost importance so that we may protect our heritage. Please consider going to the Palmetto Trust for Historic Preservation and see how you can get involved in saving a piece of the Palmetto state.  There may be another place out there that like Laurelwood is only months away from being lost forever.  Let’s not lose our Palmetto heritage. Let us instead seek to restore until it’s better than before. Uncover the hidden beauty of South Carolina.
Don't forget to check out the Friends of Laurelwood Facebook page to see the progress!

3 comments:

  1. Thank you. Please keep sharing those priceless memories especially for your descendants. It is so good to see this home saved. I saw it when it was close to ruins and it broke my heart. We have lost so much in the South,first with the union terrorists army and their rampage of violence on civilians and property and then later when many of the homes that survived were lost anyway. God bless the South. We have a rich heritage.

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  2. , My mother collects old childrens books and while looking through one with my daughter I noticed some writings. The book is "studies in reading" for the third grade by Searson and Martin. The copyright is 1918 and 1920. The book has a number of names handwritten in pencil within. The names written are Thomas Benjamen Campbell and J.H. Campbell, almost as if they were being practiced. It also has Eastover S.C. written numerous times. They were purchased in upstate New York. Did a quick google search and it led me in your direction. I would love a quick history if there is any relation, would also be happy to send you some photos of it.
    Respectfully, Marty
    Biracree@gmail.com

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  3. Hi Marty! Thanks for your comment. I would love to have some photos of the book. JH Campbell sr was my grandfather and Thomas Benjamen (Uncle Ben) and JH Campbell (Uncle JH) were my uncles. How neat that your mother has this book! I wonder how she happened to get it? There was an auction at Laurelwood after my aunt died and most everything was auctioned off (sad story). I am amazed that the book ended up in New York!

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