Hampton-Preston Mansion and Gardens

1615 Blanding Street
Columbia, SC 29201
(803) 252-1770

One of Columbia’s oldest historic houses, the Hampton-Preston Mansion was home to many people over the years, most notably the Hampton and Preston familes. The Hampton-Preston Mansion has had many uses over the years, included a private residence, a governor’s mansion, Union Army headquarters, a convent, educational institutions and commercial space.

This house was built in 1818 by Ainsley Hall, a wealthy Columbia merchant, and his wife Sarah. They sold the house in 1823 to Wade Hampton I, who updated the Federal-style home to Greek Revival. The house passed through the Hampton and Preston families, who were forced to sell the estate after the Civil War. It was home to four different colleges before grounds were divided for commercial use. Rehabilitated in the late 1960s, the historic mansion opened in 1970 as the centerpiece of the Midlands Tricentennial Exposition Center.

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