The Historic Beaufort Foundation cordially invites you to join us for this year’s annual Spring Architect’s Tour. Taking place on Saturday, March 20, 2021, our annual tour will guide you on a unique journey of Beaufort through examples of both traditional and contemporary architecture, showcasing the creative and distinctive imprint of some of our most accomplished architects. The homes chosen for this year’s tour specifically interpret the Lowcountry in the 21st century. This year, we are featuring properties that have been recently completed and “hard hat” tours of properties under construction.


Beaufort has boasted some of the best of southern architecture since building began here in the 18th century. Today’s local architects continue that tradition of excellence. This year, the tour highlights the work of Allison Ramsey Architects, Frederick and Frederick Architects and Montgomery Architecture & Planning.  Architects, Builders and Contractors will also be onsite to answer questions during the tour, including:  Broad River Construction, Allen Patterson Builders, Howell Builders, Phifer Contracting and TD Commercial Builders.  

Properties included in this year’s tour are located in historic downtown Beaufort, Lady’s Island, Cane Island, St. Helena Island and Fripp Island.

Cara May Cottage

Location: Beaufort Historic District
Architect:  Allison Ramsey Architects
Builder: TD Commercial Builders
Interior Designers: Jeremiah & Emily Smith

This beautiful cottage, full of curb appeal, is similar in size to the original freedman cottages built throughout the North West Quadrant of Beaufort’s Historic District in the late 19th century.

Cane Island Home

Location: Cane Island
Architect: Frederick & Frederick Architects
Builder: Patrick McMichael, Broad River Construction
Builder: Matt Phifer, Phifer Construction
Interior Design: Frederick & Frederick Architects

This home’s custom design provides a more contemporary feel than the traditional Lowcountry style and emphasizes the owner’s desire for a light-filled house with clean lines.

St. Helena Island House

Location: Station Creek
Architect: Montgomery Planning & Architecture
Builder: Allan Howell, Howell Builders
Interior Design: Susan Loeffler

This ultra-modern home sits along the marshes of Station Creek with views to St. Phillips Island, Bay Point, and the mouth of the Port Royal Sound.

Fripp Island Home

Location: Fripp Island
Architect:  Allison Ramsey Architects
Builder: Allen Patterson, Allen Patterson Builders
Interior Designer: Allen Patterson Builders

This custom waterfront house has a great view of the Atlantic Ocean and is high on southern coastal charm. Garden spaces and a pool accent the interior side of the lot, adding to outdoor living opportunities.

Factory Creek Home

Location: Lady’s Island
Architect: Montgomery Planning & Architecture
Builder: Matt Phifer, Phifer Construction

This innovative project is a blend of old and new by reimagining a 1970’s split-level house into a sensitive and sustainable design.

Your safety during this event is a priority. The Historic Beaufort Foundation is mindful of the continuing Covid-19 concerns and will make every effort to ensure that protocols are in place for signage, social distancing, access, masking, hand sanitizer and other necessary precautions. Masks will be required when inside the properties.


Spring Architect’s Tour

Date:  Saturday, March 20, 2021 – rain or shine

Time: 10AM to 4:30PM

Price: $65 per person – Advance Reservations are recommended and available by calling HBF at 843-379-3331 or by visiting this link. The tour is self-paced and self-driven.

This year’s tour sponsors include: Gilbert Law Firm, Broad River Construction, Allen Patterson Builders, Howell Builders, and Phifer Construction

Whether you are a history buff, a lover of architecture, or looking for inspiration for your own home, this year’s architectural tour has something for everyone. Please join us and enjoy this unique opportunity to get a look at some of the most fabulous new architecture in Beaufort.  

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Perhaps you’ve driven past the historic John Mark Verdier House and noticed she could use a fresh coat of paint. You aren’t the only one. At the Historic Beaufort Foundation, we have been raising funds to repair and repaint the John Mark Verdier House and are excited to announce that the time for our “Paint the Lady” project is finally here! Work started in the beginning of February and is anticipated to take 8 to 9 weeks.

As a resident (or visitor) of Beaufort, you may know that the John Mark Verdier House is one of the town’s architectural jewels. John Mark Verdier built this house in the center of downtown Beaufort between 1801 and 1805. The house became a symbol of Verdier’s success as a merchant as well as the influence of the Adam brothers on the Beaufort Style of architecture. While the house remained in the ownership of the Verdier family until the 1940s it never served as a private residence after the Civil War but served as commercial space for a wide variety of businesses. Unfortunately, all this change was extremely destructive to the grand historic house. Due to its decline, the building was placed on the city’s demolition list in the mid 1900s. If it weren’t for a group of concerned Beaufort citizens who banded together to save the house from demolition, we would not enjoy the beauty and history of this magnificent house today.

As you may know, the John Mark Verdier House currently operates as a historic house museum. The house will be closed during the renovation. We will be sure to keep you informed as to our progress and projected reopening dates. And, we promise, this preservation project will be worth the wait! With the museum closing for a short time, we are providing an opportunity for you to learn more about this historic property prior to its reopening. We’ve put together videos about the history of the home on our website for you to enjoy by following this link.

What exactly will be happening to the house during the renovation?

Let us give you a glimpse into the preservation process:


Although the John Mark Verdier House dates back to the early 1800s, its current exterior color pattern was based on historic paint color analysis documenting the mid- nineteenth century and evidence from Civil War era photographs.   We are pleased to share that, with continuing assistance from Susan Buck, noted paint color expert, we will return the house to its original ca. 1804 appearance. Instead of the salmon paint color you are used to, we will be taking the house back to its original creamy white exterior color. The rendition below will give you a better idea of what to expect.

Recent research, by Colin Brooker, indicated the tabby foundation was originally covered in a waterproof “cement” invented in London in the 1790’s.  Paint analysis indicated the foundation was then painted a dark brown and scored (a technique also known as penciling) to appear as it was ashlar stone.  This type of faux painting was typical of the Federal Period of architecture.   Historic Beaufort Foundation is excited that the new research will guide the renovation paint scheme.


To begin with, the house will be hand scraped and hand painted and damaged or deteriorating wood will be replaced on the exterior of the building. The preservation team will go to painstaking effort to match the historic nature of the building, The repair process will likely be slow as we follow appropriate preservation practices and due to the age of the building. Extra care must be taken to ensure no further damage is caused.

Do you want to be a part of this amazing effort? You still have the opportunity to assist us in preserving Beaufort’s architectural history! While we have secured enough funding for this extensive renovation project to move forward, we are still raising funds to ensure the completion of the renovation. You can visit our website at to make a donation or find more information about our preservation plans. Help us “Paint the Lady” and bring back the grandeur of our beloved John Mark Verdier House.