Parris Island Drydock and Commanding Generals House

Mexico and Tripoli Sts., Parris Island, South Carolina


Commanding General's House-Left Elevation

South Carolina Department of Archives and History

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The Parris Island Drydock is significant both from a historic and an engineering standpoint. It was one of the few wooden graving-type drydocks ever constructed in this country, was the largest naval drydock at the time of its construction in the early 1890s, and was the largest wooden drydock ever constructed in the nation. When in use the drydock was sealed off from the Beaufort River by means of a floating caisson type gate. As ships began to outgrow the drydock in the 1920s it was allowed to fall into disrepair. The Victorian style Commanding Generalís home (Quarters One) and its neighboring ca. 1900 octagonal mode gazebo reflect the style of living prevalent on military posts of the period. They are among the first few permanent structures built by the military on Parris Island and, in the case of Quarters One, the home of the Marine Corpsí greatest generals including two former Commandants, Generals W.M. Greene, Jr. and D.M. Shoup. Constructed between 1891 and 1895, Quarters One has been the traditional home of the depot Commanding General. The two-story house boasts 27 rooms and a porch which spans the entire front and partially down both sides of the house. Although the house has undergone several renovations, it still retains its basic floor plan. Listed in the National Register November 21, 1978. - SCDAH

National Register information 

Posted to the National Register of Historic Places on November 21, 1978
Reference number
Architectural styles
Victorian; Other architectural type; Wooden Drydock
Areas of significance
Military; Engineering
Level of significance
Evaluation criteria
A - Event; C - Design/Construction; B - Person
Property type
Historic functions
Naval facility; Single dwelling; Institutional housing
Current functions
Naval facility; Single dwelling; Institutional housing
Period of significance
Significant years
1883; 1893
Number of properties
Contributing buildings: 1
Contributing structures: 2

Update Log 

  • August 18, 2014: Photo imported by Michael Miller
  • June 19, 2014: Updated by Michael Miller: Added "Description"