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Bluffton Adds Two Structures to Historic List

Posted by HH360 on May 14, 2022
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Town Council adds two structures to Bluffton’s list of historic “contributing resources”

Town Council added one town-owned and one privately-owned building to its list of historic “contributing resources,” officially documenting the significance of these structures, its architectural qualities, and the roles they played in Bluffton’s history. The Jennie Kitty Municipal Building and the Bluffton Post Office were added to the list during the May 10 Council meeting.

The Old Town Bluffton Historic District now is comprised of 86 contributing resources, 84 are structures and two are natural features (i.e., Heyward & Huger Coves.)

“Bluffton’s ‘sense of place’ is what makes our town so unique,” Mayor Lisa Sulka said. “Preserving these structures are essential to honoring our past and the people and places which contributed to Bluffton’s identity today.”

About the Jennie Kitty Municipal Building & Bluffton Post Office:

The Jennie Kitty Municipal Building:

Jennie Kitty Municipal Building, once known as the Bluffton Health Center, is located at 1261 May River Road. It was constructed in 1957 with addition completed in 1967. The building is associated with the legacy of community contributions and public service to the Town of Bluffton rendered by Jennie Kitty (1930-2021) and the self-sacrificing work of Dr. Donald Eugene Gatch (1930-1980), who, in the 1960s, was one of the few white doctors who would treat black patients in South Carolina. The red-brick building is also notable for being a remarkably intact and rare example of the International (“mid-century modern”) style of architecture in Bluffton.

The Bluffton Post Office:

The Bluffton Post Office is located at 41 Bridge Street and was constructed between 1964 and 1965. It was Bluffton’s first purpose-built Post Office and is another fine example of the International style. Prior to its opening in May 1965, Bluffton’s Post Office occupied spaces within various commercial buildings, including next door at “the Rate.” Built by then-Postmistress, Lucille Heyward (1910-1992), the red-brick Post Office cost $10,480 to build and Mrs. Heyward leased it to the Post Office Department for an annual rent of $1,248. According to former Bluffton Mayor, Emmett McCracken, the Post Office was where you went if you needed to see anyone in Bluffton because everyone came into the Post Office every day. The Post Office remained at 41 Bridge Street until 1988.

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