These homeowners love to host family and friends so we worked with them to rework the back half of the first floor to make it more functional.  We also addressed some deferred maintenance on the exterior and were even able to add back some original features that had been moved at some point in time.

Exterior Renovations 
In a word, this historic home is grand.  With eclectic architectural elements your eyes quickly are drawn to different features that make this home feel majestic, and one of a kind.  Our first order of business was to rebuild the entire front porch including much of the floor joist system.  Once repairs began, we quickly realized that much of the structural elements of the flat roof above were unexpectedly in dire condition and the structural supports holding it up underneath also needed to be replaced.  Those repairs along with your typical repairs to siding and trim, plus replacing all of the rotted rafter tails along the entire roof significantly impacted the timeline and budget, but our homeowners were committed to the restoration process.  Around back we enclosed an old screen porch and connected it to the guest bedroom so that inside the floor plan worked better for their family.  Once all of the repairs were completed and a new roof was installed, the paint team got to work prepping this home for months so that the new historic color scheme could really steal the show.  The results are a beautiful, grand home that is restored for many years to come. 

Interior Renovations:
For the interior renovations our first step was to remove a wall between the kitchen and a small hallway to increase the size of the kitchen.  We also used an area where the old washer and dryer were located to carve out a unique powder room for guests.  With the new enclosed back porch were were able to create a new mud room/laundry room and with the new square footage in the bedroom along with reworking the existing bedroom, closet, and hall bathroom, we were able to create a spacious and private in-law suite.  Once the floor plan changes were completed, the team got to work putting things back together including reusing as much of the original trim that was carefully removed and saved during demolition.  When we ran out of those original materials, we found a local lumber yard that was able to replicate the detailed trim so that the new matched the old as closely as possible.  We also discovered hidden beadboard in the kitchen and were able to reuse it in the powder room and mud room.  The kitchen, butler's pantry, and mud room/laundy all received new cabinetry in a rich shade of green and we installed a black and white checker board pattern tile on the floor chosen by our clients.  The bathroom received a custom walk-in tiled shower along with a tiled wainscoting and flooring with a beautiful stained vanity to warm up the space.  All of the spaces were painted in neutral tones and we were able to refinish the original and salvaged pine floors in the bedroom.  Overall these new spaces work so much better for the home and our clients' growing family and we hope they love it for years to come.

Majestic, architecturally eclectic, and grand.

This house is very eclectic architecturally and although its masses are balanced, a close examination reveals elements that pull against the balance. The building has matching wings, but the first floor of the wing on the east (right) side of the house is open, while that on the west side is enclosed by glass panels divided into multiple pains. The front door is placed off center, and the small oval window (a Colonial Revival detail) is centered on the second story so that it calls attention to the position of the door. Also, the bay on the right side of the first floor is not matched on the left side. The house has a flared hipped roof, a dormer with a flared roof, and classical pilasters in the door surround. The porch roof is pierced by heavy brick piers that suggest the influence of the Prairie style. The balustrade over the porch features a Chippendale design.

This house was built by Andrew M. Law, president of A. M. Law and Company, a stock and bond brokerage company.  Andrew Law's father, Dr. Thomas Law, lived at 376 S. Spring Street and hist lot on Spring Street backed up to his son Andrew's lot on W. Hampton Avenue.

In 1925 Andrew Law sold this house to Martha B. and Gentry Harris, who had three children.  After Gentry Harris's death in 1935, Mrs. Harris, who was known as "Mattie," successfully managed the numerous properties that they owned.  A number of old outbuildings still stand in the yard: the stable (now a garage), the outhouse, a doll house, and even the chicken house.  Mrs. Harris turned the doll house into a rental cottage for years and rented it to music students at Converse College.  Her formal garden with its magnolias, boxwoods, and brick wall is still very beautiful.  Mr. Harris lived in the house until her death in 1994, when it was purchased by Francis and Joyce Heitler.

Excerpt and photos from Hampton Heights of Spartanburg: Its History, Houses, and People by Vivian B. Fisher

History & The Namesake

At the suggestion of my client, we named this project in honor of Mrs. Martha Harris who lived in the home for 69 years and is largely responsible for keeping the home intact when many of the other large homes were divided into apartments.


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