Rose Hill Plantation Bluffton Beaufort County
— Rose Hill Plantation © William Kirk, 2009 —
(Do Not Use Without Written Consent)
Much of the information on this page was contributed by Robert and Robin White.
- Location Colleton River, Bluffton, St. Luke's Parish, Beaufort County
Located on Rose Hill Way off US 278
- Origin of name Two theories have surfaced over the years regarding the name Rose Hill. One is that the plantation was named after a little girl (Rose) in the 1830s. More recent information suggests the name comes from John Rose, the plantation's owner in the late 1700s to early 1800s (7).
- Other names Kirk's Folly, John Kirk House, Rose Hill Mansion
- Current status Privately owned, available for special occasions, and open for tours by reservation
- 1718 Earliest known date of existence
Granted to Sir John Colleton. It was once a part of Devil's Elbow Barony.
- 1790 The plantation became under the ownership of John Rose (7).
- 1799 Upon Rose's death, the plantation was inherited by his step son, James Kirk (7).
- 1830s The plantation was given to Dr. John and Caroline Kirk as a wedding present from Caroline's father James Kirk.
- 1858 House built (completed in 1860) by Dr. John and Caroline Kirk (7).
- 1946 John and Betsy Gould Sturgeon purchased the house and completed it in a highly sophisticated manner.
- 1981 Rose Hill Plantation Development Company, a David and John Welton pursuit, purchased the land for development of a planned residential community (8).
Mrs. Welton spent nine months working with a rehabilitation team which repaired and completed an extensive rehabilitation of the house (8).
- 1982 The house was opened to the public for tours (8).
- 1987 A fire severely damaged the house and it would sit empty for nearly a decade (1, part 2).
- 1996 Rose Hill Plantation House was purchased by the Middleton-White Foundation and is currently being restored as a private home.
- 2009 Rose Hill Plantation House has been lovingly restored by Rusty and Robin White of the Middleton-White Foundation.
- Number of acres 12.5 in 1996 (1, part 2)
- Primary crop Sea island cotton
- Chronological list Sir John Colleton (1718-?); John Rose (1790-1799); James Kirk (1799-1830s); Dr. John and Caroline Kirk (1830s-?); Pinckney; John and Betsy Gould Sturgeon (1946-?); Rose Hill Plantation Development Company/Welton (1980-?); Robert L. and Robin White (1996-present)
- Number of slaves 154 (7).
- The house is of Gothic Revival design. Although a 1987 fire severely damaged the home, much of the original characteristics and materials have been salvaged and restored. Click here to see photos of the house and grounds.
References & Resources
- Brief History of Rose Hill Plantation: 1 | 2
- National Register of Historic Places
Nomination form - PDF - submitted in 1983
Photographs, architectural overview
- 30-15 Plantation File, held by the South Carolina Historical Society
- William P. Baldwin Jr., Plantations of the Low County: South Carolina 1697-1865 (Westbrook, ME: Legacy Publishing, 1994)
Order Plantations of the Low County: South Carolina 1697-1865
- Lawrence S. Rowland, Alexander Moore, and George C. Rogers, Jr. The History of Beaufort County, South Carolina: Volume 1, 1514-1861 (Columbia, SC: University of South Carolina Press, 1996)
Order The History of Beaufort County, South Carolina: Volume 1, 1514-1861
- Carolina W. Todd and Sidney Wait, South Carolina: A Day at a Time (Orangeburg, SC: Sandlapper Publishing Company, 2008)
- Information contributed by Robin White
- Information contributed by Iva Welton
- Rose Hill Mansion
199 Rose Hill Way
Bluffton, SC 29910
Website: Click here