The Charleston Inn

By: Dan Gibbs

The Charleston Inn was constructed sometime in the 1880s is located at 755 North Main Street, Hendersonville. It underwent a complete transformation between 1912 and 1922 and it was remade in the Classical Revival style that became popular in the 1920’s.

In 1916, former Confederate soldier L.R. Chewning and his wife bought the Charleston Boarding House and shortly afterwards renamed it the Chewning House. Chewning was a soldier in the 4th South Carolina Regiment and he was a suspected member of the infamous Jesse James gang. He met Frank and Jesse James sometime during the Civil War and it is believed that Frank James visited the Hendersonville area sometime before his death in 1915. There is a picture hanging in the parlor of the Charleston Inn of a group of men that includes Frank James.     

The property has been through several owners and name changes. Throughout its over century long history it has been known as the Harrell House, Bonner House, McCurry Hotel, and the Claddagh Inn before returning to its naming roots the Charleston Inn. It has been listed in the National Registry of Historic Places since 1988. More information can be found on the Charleston Inn’s website

A friend of mine came to Hendersonville to visit for the first time last summer and although I had never been there before, I suggested that she try the Charleston Inn. She loved her stay there and I loved the history of the Inn. It is only about a two block walk to the heart of Main Street and we used the C Harleston Inn as the epicenter to visit several other locations in and around Hendersonville- Main Street, Dupont State Forest, the Carl Sandburg Home and the Park at Flat Rock- and finishing the day off sitting on the front porch. The owners were well versed in the history of the Inn and my friend had a great visit to Hendersonville.