Penelope Tours Downtown Charleston

There are many ways to explore downtown Charleston: by foot, by bicycle, by air conditioned motor coach, by horse and carriage… You name it, Charleston has it, and the best part? Each mode of transportation offers a different point of view.

During her vacation in the fall, Penelope was particularly taken by the many fascinating architectural features around town – the Georgian-style Old Exchange Building, the ironwork in Stolls Alley, the towering church steeples…  Inquisitive as she is, Penelope set off this morning to look for more interesting architecture downtown.

Penelope Week Two

Penelope happened to run into Liz from Palmetto Carriage Company. Though Liz is typically leading guests around town from the front of a carriage, she treated Penelope to a ride in the company golf cart for a private tour. Liz brought Penelope to see one of the finest pieces of ironwork in Charleston – the banister and piazza in front of the Broad Street bed and breakfast, the John Rutledge House Inn.

wrought iron JRH

Your question for the week: who is the man behind the design of the John Rutledge House Inn’s famous green wrought iron?

The answer: 19th century blacksmith extraordinaire – Christopher Werner! His work can be found all over Charleston – from elaborate gates around homes South of Broad to the iconic gates at the College of Charleston.

Werner’s incredible wrought and cast ironwork around the John Rutledge House Inn was completed and installed nearly a century after the house was built. Werner was commissioned in 1853 by the then-homeowner to create something spectacular; something that made a statement; something to honor the original homeowner, US Constitution signer John Rutledge.

Werner did just that. In his massive installation at the John Rutledge House, you’ll find eagles and palmetto trees – tributes to Rutledge’s service in the federal and state government. The home and ironwork has stood the test of time, surviving events as devastating as the Civil War and Hurricane Hugo. Werner’s work makes this 250-year-old building look as fresh and beautiful as the day it was built.

Watch this ‘History Nugget’ video for more information about the John Rutledge House Inn – and its 250th anniversary!

Tune in again on Monday, June 24th to see what Penelope’s next adventure entails. Follow along on Facebook for more.

Remember- Penelope the Pineapple will be in Charleston until July 8th. If you guess what she’s up to each week, you’ll be entered in a drawing to win a Charleston getaway of your own (an overnight package for two at the Kings Courtyard Inn and a $30 gift certificate to Kitchen 208)! Follow along on Facebook for updates. Learn more about the contest here.

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