“An extraordinary feat of research, engineering, and construction”
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Charleston, SC, November 16, 2015— Drayton Hall’s iconic portico is the only one of its kind in the world, but the addition of modern concrete during later generations has gradually compromised its structural integrity. Investigative work began in 2009 and an international team of experts was convened to devise a process that would ensure the stability and survival of this rare, c. 1750 structure.
“The portico rehabilitation project has been an extraordinary feat of research, engineering and construction,” said Patricia “Trish” Smith, portico project manager and Drayton Hall’s curator of historic architectural resources. “In the process, we’ve made several important discoveries about the iconic structure and collaborated to find innovative solutions to challenging preservation issues. Our international team of engineers, conservators, architects, and historians is proud of what we’ve been able to accomplish, and we look forward to welcoming guests onto the portico once again.”
The Significance of Drayton Hall’s Iconic Double Portico
Drayton Hall’s iconic portico is the only one of its kind in the world as it both projects from, and recedes into, the front of the house. While most early American houses of the period were built with centered gables to simulate a pedimented portico, Drayton Hall’s portico was fully executed in the Palladian fashion, representing a sophisticated understanding of classical architecture. http://www.draytonhall.org/preservation/architectural-history/inspired-by-palladio/ As such, visitors to the site expect to hear that Drayton Hall’s main house was designed by a famous architect; instead, they’re surprised to learn that Drayton Hall was likely designed by John Drayton (d. 1779) himself, who founded and built Drayton Hall.