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|National Register Properties in South Carolina
South Carolina National Bank of Charleston, Charleston County (16 Broad St., Charleston)
(Bank of Charleston) One of the most important buildings on South Carolina’s oldest commercial street, the South Carolina National Bank building is an integral part of Charleston’s Historic District. It was constructed in 1817 as the Office of Discount and Deposit of the Second Bank of the United States, whose charter was drawn up by John C. Calhoun. The bank provided international banking services, which enabled the transfer of South Carolina rice and cotton to European markets. It was the only bank in Charleston equipped to handle such transactions in this prosperous era. President Andrew Jackson later withdrew all government deposits, thereby destroying the bank. In 1836, when the Office of Discount and Deposit was liquidated, the Bank of Charleston purchased its property and assets including the building. The building’s exterior walls are masonry covered with stucco. Its roof is pitched with gables and a heavily molded cornice at the northern and southern ends. The south or main fašade is divided into three bays with shallow recesses. A large gold leaf eagle adorns the gable and is the original 1817 ornament. All first floor windows are surmounted with semicircular heads. In 1855 the bank purchased the building to the east. In 1856 the original building was extended to the north. The Board of Directors’ Room, an architectural masterpiece, was added in 1856 and is believed to have been designed by Edward C. Jones, a well-known Charleston architect of the period. Listed in the National Register June 4, 1973.
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