South Carolina

William Dunlap Simpson House – Laurens, South Carolina

South Carolina  |  SC Picture Project  |  Laurens County Photos  |  William Dunlap Simpson House

This Greek Revival home in Laurens once belonged to a South Carolina governor and Chief Justice of the South Carolina Supreme Court. Designed by its original owner, Christopher Garlington, in 1839, the manse boasts five chimneys and two pairs of fluted Doric columns. Towards the end of the Civil War the home was purchased by William Dunlap Simpson, a graduate from South Carolina College (now the University of South Carolina) who also attended Harvard Law School.

William Dunlop Simpson House

Bill Fitzpatrick of Taylors © Do Not Use Without Written Consent

Prior to the war, Simpson had established himself as a prominent servant of the state. He was elected to the South Carolina House of Representatives from 1854 until 1856 and again from 1858 until 1860. Simpson continued his public service during the war, sitting in the South Carolina Senate from 1860 until 1863 and in the Confederate House of Representatives from 1863 through 1865. He was able to serve in the Confederate army as well, rising to the rank of Lieutenant Colonel.

After the war Simpson was elected to the United State House of Representatives, yet he was not confirmed due to his active past in the Confederacy. His political career continued to soar, however, and he was elected lieutenant governor in 1877 with Governor Wade Hampton, where he served until Hampton resigned for a seat in the United States Senate in 1879. Simpson then became governor for one year before being appointed Chief Justice of the South Carolina Supreme Court until 1890.

The house remained in the Simpson family until 1939.

The William Dunlap Simpson House is listed in the National Register, which says the following:

Constructed in 1839, this Greek Revival dwelling has been owned by South Carolinians of prominence in both local and statewide affairs. The Simpson House is an excellent example of Greek Revival architecture. Its designer-owner, Christopher Garlington, probably with the aid of a pattern book, created a structure that still retains the aura of an antebellum plantation house owned by a wealthy planter. The white clapboard structure has three stories with a total of twelve rooms. The gable roof is pierced by four end chimneys contained within the structure. A fifth chimney is in the rear projection. At the end of the Civil War William Dunlap Simpson purchased the house from John Adam Eichelberger, a wealthy planter who had used the structure as his townhouse.

Simpson, a graduate of South Carolina College and Harvard Law School, had been a member of the South Carolina House of Representatives for several terms and was a member of the State Senate when South Carolina seceded. During the Civil War, he reached the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. After the war he was elected to the US House of Representatives; however, due to his Confederate affiliations, he was refused his seat in the House. Wade Hampton was elected governor in 1876 with Simpson as lieutenant governor. When Hampton was elected to the US Senate in 1879, Simpson became governor. He was appointed Chief Justice of the South Carolina Supreme Court in 1880. The Motes family purchased it from Simpson heirs in 1939. The once elaborate gardens, orchard, and vineyard have disappeared.

William Dunlap Simpson House Info

Address: 726 West Main Street, Laurens, SC 29360
GPS Coordinates: 34.49542,-82.02474

William Dunlap Simpson House Map

William Dunlap Simpson House – Add Info and More Photos

The purpose of the South Carolina Picture Project is to celebrate the beauty of the Palmetto State and create a permanent digital repository for our cultural landmarks and natural landscapes. We invite you to add additional pictures (paintings, photos, etc) of William Dunlap Simpson House, and we also invite you to add info, history, stories, and travel tips. Together, we hope to build one of the best and most loved SC resources in the world!


The South Carolina Picture Project is a volunteer project which earns no profit. We work hard to ensure its accuracy, but if you see a mistake, please know that it is not intentional and that we are more than happy to update our information if it is incorrect. That said, our goal is to create something positive for our state, so please make your comments constructive if you would like them to be published. Thank you!

William Dunlap Simpson House - Related Entries

Wilson House / Yorkville Jail

The Governor Thomas Bennett House

Tabby Manse
Tabby Manse

Bennett-Sistare House

Hanover House

Koger House

Greenleaf Villa

Historic Homestead Calhoun County Museum


Join Us on Facebook
Our 5 Goals
Our Contributors
Add Info
Add Pictures
Search for Pictures
Missing Landmarks


Abbeville ACE Basin Aiken Allendale Anderson Awendaw Bamberg Banks Barns & Farms Barnwell Batesburg-Leesville Beaches Beaufort Beech Island Belton Bennettsville Bishopville Blackville Bluffton Bridges Bygone Landmarks Camden Carnegie Libraries Cemeteries Charleston Charleston Navy Base Cheraw Chester Churches Clemson Clinton Clio Colleges Columbia Conway Cordesville Courthouses Darlington Denmark Dillon Donalds Easley Edgefield Edisto Elloree Fairfax Florence Folly Beach Forests and Nature Preserves Fountain Inn Gaffney Garden City Beach Georgetown Glenn Springs Graniteville Greeleyville Greenville Greenwood Greer Hamburg Hampton Hartsville Hemingway Hilton Head Historical Photos Historic Houses Honea Path Hopkins Huger Hunting Island Isle of Palms Jails James Island Johns Island Johnsonville Johnston Kiawah Island Kingstree Lake City Lake Marion Lakes Lancaster Landrum Latta Laurens Lexington Libraries Lighthouses Little River Manning Marion McClellanville McCormick Military Mills Moncks Corner Mountains Mount Carmel Mount Pleasant Mullins Murrells Inlet Myrtle Beach National Register Newberry Ninety Six North Augusta North Charleston North Myrtle Beach Orangeburg Pacolet Parks Pawleys Island Pendleton Pickens Piers Pinopolis Plantations Port Royal Post Offices Ravenel Restaurants Ridge Spring Ridgeway Rivers Roadside Oddities Robert Mills Rock Hill Rockville Rosenwald Schools Salters Saluda Savannah River Site SC Artists SC Heroes of the Alamo Schools Seneca Shrimp Boats Society Hill Spartanburg Sports Springs St. George St. Helena Island St. Matthews Stores Sullivan's Island Summerton Summerville Sumter Sunset Synagogues Town Clocks Trains & Depots Trees Trenton Turbeville Ulmer Union Wadmalaw Island Walhalla Walterboro Waterfalls Water Towers West Columbia Westminster Winnsboro Yemassee York