The Battery Carriage House Bed and Breakfast Inn is located in the beautiful garden area on the property of a truly glorious, 5 story 1845, Greek Revival /Second Empire style antebellum mansion found in the favored neighborhood of the rich 19th century merchants of Charleston, just across the street from Battery Park, which includes White Point Gardens. The mansion is described as "a gracefully imposing structure, clad in mellowed pink stucco and white piazzas. "It is one of the most grand and gracious edifices on the South Battery."
While the main mansion is still a private residence belonging to Kat and Drayton Hastie, who are direct descendants of an 1874 owner, Andrew Simonds, eleven guest rooms are located in the mansion's Carriage House, and in the raised basement of the main house, which are located around the garden area. These rooms are open to visitors to stay, known as the Battery Carriage House Bed and Breakfast Inn.
Three Rooms in the raised basement; Original servants' housing - These three rooms have king beds and are the largest available in the inn. They face the Battery and the small front garden.
Room 3 is the largest but has no windows or view, except the window located in its sitting room, which is an old vaulted room which may have been a wine cellar or a cistern for the main house. This room is naturally really dark, when the lights aren't on.
Various out buildings were connected together to the Carriage House sometime in the early 20th century. Rooms located in the old Carriage House are described as being cozy and romantic, furnished with antiques/antique replicas.
Built in 1843, during Charleston's best years when money was flowing into its economy, this grand mansion became the showcase home of a merchant who became wealthy importing and exporting cotton. When the Civil War broke out in 1860, Charleston was in for a rough ride, enduring through a 4 year battle with the Union forces. These mansions were abandoned as they were so close to the city's defenses just across the road.
In 1870, Col. Richard Lathers, a South Carolina millionaire who defended the Union during the Civil War, bought this grand estate and hired architect John Henry Devereaux for a needed 10,000 dollar renovation, as being located in a war zone isn't real good for buildings. Lather had hoped to use his "wealth and Northern connections" to not only help to rebuild a battle scarred Charleston but to bury the hatchet between northern and southern leaders through social and political gatherings at this glorious home, but little progress was made. It was too soon and too much had happened.
Discouraged, Col. Richard Lathers sold this mansion in 1874 to Mr. Hastie's great-great grandfather, Andrew Simonds, who was a reconstruction era banker who could help rebuild Charleston in more a practical way. Several generations of Mr. Hasites' family lived in this mansion. The estate was eventually sold to another branch of the family, and then to others outside the family.
In the 1920s and '30s some rather wild parties took place in the Carriage House, complete with ladies of the night, stripping for guests and customers in the Carriage House. Yikes!
Time wasn't kind to this once beautiful mansion, and the people who lived here during the 20th century failed to keep up on the repairs that older homes need to have done. It fell into disrepair, which was made a lot worse when Hurricane Hugo blew through town. It was abandoned for a few years. Luckily, Drayton and Kat Hastie rescued this old family home and took on the huge job of restoring it and renovating the mansion and its property, which both needed a lot of work.
HISTORY OF MANIFESTATIONS:
When Hurricane Hugo hit Charleston hard, it is possible that some spirits were aroused by the storm. Or, they could've become more active when the Hasties began to seriously renovate the property as well as the mansion when they bought the place in 1992.
When pirates were on the loose in the 18th century/early 19th century, before this neighborhood was even built, the authorities used to hang captured pirates from the trees on the Battery.
During the Civil War, the city of Charleston held off the siege of the Union forces for 4 years, thanks to the military cannon installation located in Battery Park. While the mansions on South Battery were abandoned during this time period, and it is quite possible that some confederate defenders took refuge in the out buildings on this property to get some sleep.
During the Civil War, a terrible outbreak of Yellow Fever killed a lot of people. Perhaps some people who lived in the servants quarters or elsewhere died of this deadly disease.
During the earlier years of the 20th century, the son of the family who lived here was a "sensitive and cultivated college student," a gentleman who couldn't live with himself anymore, jumped off the roof of either the carriage house or the main mansion and killed himself.
Carriage House Rooms:
A broad-chested, tall male entity dressed in a buttonless, rough materialed overcoat, whose apparition only appears showing its torso haunts various rooms of the Carriage House. He likes to bother men staying in room 8 for chuckles, but never hurts them. Guests get the feeling that they are being watched by this unseen presence, who isn't deemed to have the nicest character.
Report 1: Room 8 - One guest of the inn told the owners about being in a half-awake/half asleep state, lying on his side. This apparition appeared right by the bedside of this man, standing right up to the side of the bed. The guest could see that it was wearing several layers of clothing. The entity was breathing heavily. The guest was at once fascinated by the material of the entity's cape, made of a material that he had never seen before, as it was from a different era or century! When the guest reached out to feel the rough material of the cape between his fingers, it uttered a growing sound. He fully woke up and the entity had disappeared. This guest got the feeling that this entity in room 8 who shows just his torso is a big, rough, crude character, far from being a distinguished gentlemen.
Report 2: Room 8 - The husband, but not the wife experienced some paranormal occurrences. The wife believed in ghosts, while the husband thought it was a lot of malarkey, until he was awakened several times by the feeling of an unseen presence hovering over him, the crashing of a chair being thrown against the wall and the sound of the toilet seat being slammed down.
The wife took pictures all over the place, after her husband went to sleep and was surprised to catch a photo of an outline of a torso standing in the courtyard, looking up at the door of their room.
A male entity named 'The Gentleman Ghost."
Report 1: Room 10 - Two sisters settled into bed for the evening. While one sister went to sleep right away, the other sister laid awake restless and not able to sleep, perhaps a little concerned about someone coming into their room. She was surprised to see a "wispy gray apparition," about 5' 8" with a slender build float right through their locked door. It was an apparition of a young man, with no facial features who lay down next to the awake sister and gently put his arm around her shoulders in a comforting manner. He vanished when the awake sister finally woke up her sleeping sister. Both sisters went to sleep and didn't wake up until the morning.
Report 2: Room 10 - As this guest unpacked his bag, he felt a presence standing behind him. As the evening progressed, this guest felt more and more uneasy. He began to read the 23rd Psalm about 10 times, until the atmosphere became extremely negative, so he stopped. He did sleep with his Bible that night. He felt that the ghost doesn't like Bible readings.
This same guest heard foot steps follow him out of his room and down the stairs the next morning. As he rounded the corner he saw a figure out of the corner of his eye which quickly disappeared.
Report 3: Room 10: A woman guest was relaxing on the bed, and was in the room alone, Her husband had gone downstairs to ask about something. As she sat there, she saw a shadow of a man on the wall of the room, who was "slender in build and about 5’ 11” to 6 feet tall." The shadow on the wall passed by the bed and "settled onto the closet door that adjoins the main house before fading into the door."
Report 4: Room 10 - A woman and her daughter stayed here one evening. They set up a camera and let it run when they went to bed. Upon developing the film, imagine their surprise when something kept standing in front of the camera tapping the microphone and breathing was recorded. Several orbs also moved around the room.
The ground floor: Raised Basement Rooms:
Room 3: Figures of light with different shapes and sizes gathered together in the sitting room, after lingering a little around the bed, watching the living.
A turned off cell phone in the sitting room began going off by itself beginning at 3 AM during the first night in this room, as if something was playing with the turn on /off button!
The sound of dripping water coming out at a fast pace wakes up guests staying here, but when the guest gets up to turn the faucet off, no real water has been dripping in the sink!!
The joint is jumping. The woman photographer got a picture of this torso apparition with a grudge. It could be an entity of an executed pirate or perhaps a soldier from the working class who was perhaps killed sometime during the brutal four year siege from Union forces. That would make anyone bitter and grumpy!!
The Gentleman's ghost and his friends were captured on film. Entities can't resist gadgets, and the movie camera was too much fun not to play a little with it.
Various entities like to gather in the raised basement sitting room, perhaps to socialize, relive their good memories of this mansion in their old quarters. Sometimes the spirits of the suddenly departed via disease or sudden death, like to hang out in familiar places they enjoyed being a part of.