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To Relive History!

The History of Linwood

The lives of late 19th Century Southern families continue to be reflected on this two-acre estate near the town center in the historic district. The lovely, iconic two-story, Victorian house with columned porches front and back is enhanced by lush, sub-tropical gardens. The service yard behind the house would have been a hive of activity as it originally contained the hay barn, stables, servants’ quarters, cistern, garden, woodshed, flower dump, gas house, chicken coop, fowl yard, wells, and privies.

Julie Drayton and her husband William Hastie built Linwood as their permanent home in 1883. William walked two blocks to the railroad to commute into his insurance business in Charleston. High ceilings, heart pine floors, triple-hung windows with original glass, and generous room sizes give this home a sense of grandeur even without the fancy dental molding and opulence of pre-Civil War houses.

John Grimke Drayton, the developer of Magnolia on Ashley as the first public gardens in the United States, died at Linwood, his daughter’s home, in 1891. He was the nephew of the famous abolitionists, Sarah and Angelina Grimke, and cousin to Archibald and Francis Grimke.

Being soundly built, the house survived the massive earthquake of 1886. The Victorian bay windows fell out in opposite directions and the entire house moved 2.5 inches of its foundation. That phenomenon is pictured and described by the US Geological Survey.

Hurricane Hugo wreaked havoc upon the house and redesigned the property in 1989. Again, Linwood not only survived the onslaught and retains its magnificence today.

History of Summerville

The quintessential Southern town of Summerville, South Carolina has provided nearly four centuries of hospitality. Early 18th century settlers from Charleston’s Lowcountry retreated to the inland upcountry to escape the heat and related diseases. Later, Northerners came South to benefit from the winter warmth. The “Golden Age of Hospitality” during the late 1800s and early 1900s attracted presidents and dignitaries from around the world. Summerville exploded with grand hotels and unique lodging clusters.

In 1899 the “Congress of Physicians for Tuberculosis” designated Summerville as one of the two best places in the world to get respite and recovery from that dreaded disease. The pure water, sandy soil, and dry climate combined with the air filtered through the ubiquitous pine trees provided easier breathing for sufferers.

“The Best Friend”, the first passenger train in the country, passed through Summerville during the 1830s. The present town square was established along the railroad tracks.

Summerville is famous for “Sweet Tea”. The first commercial tea was grown in Summerville. Many tea plants remain in the town’s private gardens but the tea plantation has moved to nearby Johns Island. Worth a visit.

For retreat, recovery, or recreation, Summerville continues to open her doors and heart to welcome visitors. The geographical heart at the town square hosts unique shops, cafes, eateries, and breweries. The cultural heart offers theatre, music, and art. Summerville, known as “Flowertown Amongst The Pines” has heart, and is the heart, of the area.

More  About   Us   Continued…

Early photos show the sand and pine trees native to the two-acre site. The Drayton Hastie family was the first of many who, year upon year added layer upon layer of landscaped beauty developing azalea lined, sandy pathways leading from one garden enclosure to another. Hurricane Hugo, in 1989, contributed immeasurably to a redesign. Ancient camellias, azaleas, majestic magnolias, and stately palms continue to dominate the tranquil scene. Elevated porches offer a panoramic view of the lush, more formal gardens. The service yard at the rear contained the carriage house, stables, barn, henhouse, gas house, flower dump, cistern WCs, vegetable garden, wells, and whatever else contributed to support the small estate.

Many community and charitable organizations have been welcomed to the award-winning Linwood estate for tours, teas, receptions, and events. Some of these include the Summerville Dorchester Chamber of Commerce, DREAM (Downtown Revitalization Enhancement And Management), Children-in-Crisis, Summerville Community Orchestra, Golden Age of Summerville, Breast Cancer Awareness, Lowcountry Crisis Pregnancy Center, Garden Clubs of America, The Summerville Artist Guild, the Junior Service League, and Sculpture in the South. The gardens are available for viewing by arrangement.

Articles, photos, and comments about Linwood can be read in the following publications: Beth’s Pineland Village, Legacy of Beauty, Sandlapper Magazine, The State (travel section), Summerville Journal Scene, Post and Courier, LowCountry Living, American Historic Inns, Southern Living, Charleston Living, Azalea Magazine.

Linda & Peter

Owners & Innkeepers

Peter and Linda Shelbourne met in London and married in 1961. They moved to the States in 1968 and purchased Linwood as their home in 1979. Once their three sons established their own homes the Shelbournes opened “Linwood Bed and Breakfast” in 1995. They have a heart for hospitality, history, and horticulture.

Owners Peter and Linda Shelbourne are thankful to all who make Linwood a good place to stay.

The A Team at The Linwood Inn

‘We’ve got it!’


Hospitality & Management


Emergencies & Maintenance



Kurt & Rebecca

Emergencies & Maintenance

Earl Grey

Unofficial Greeter


200 South Palmetto St

Summerville, SC 29483



+1 (843) 900-7591

Please Call Before Visiting!

Visiting hours arranged for mutual convenience.

History & Horticulture Tours may be arranged in advance!

M-F:  9am - 5pm
S-S: 12pm - 5pm

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