Bon Haven

Also known as: The Cleveland House
728 N. Church St., Spartanburg, South Carolina

Historic home in Spartanburg, SC


Bon Haven, Left Oblique

South Carolina Department of Archives and History

View this photo at



Built ca. 1884, Bon Haven is a Second Empire style structure with 1920s Neo-Classical additions. Its builder, John B. Cleveland, played a vital role in the growth of Spartanburg, promoting almost every facet of the town’s development to such a degree that upon his death in 1928 he was heralded as the town’s “first citizen.” Cleveland was a founder and trustee of Converse College, a trustee of Wofford College, and played a role in the establishment of Spartanburg’s city school system. He organized and served as president of Whitney Mills and was instrumental in establishing the town’s first bank, First National Bank of Spartanburg. From 1904 until his death in 1928, Cleveland served as vice president of the South Carolina Historical Society. Between 1878 and 1880, he served in the South Carolina House of Representatives. Bon Haven is architecturally significant due to its solid construction and interesting design. Two stories high and set upon a raised granite basement, the house exemplifies the eclecticism of two ages. The Mansard roof, central tower, and arched window reflect the Second Empire style of architecture; the massive Ionic columns and portico reflect the Neo-Classical revival of the 1920s. To the rear of the structure are brick servant’s quarters, a brick “tea” house, and the remains of a formal garden. Listed in the National Register June 29, 1976. - SCDAH

All interior architectural elements have been sold for salvage in 2016 and the house was demolished in 2017.

National Register information 

Posted to the National Register of Historic Places on June 29, 1976
Reference number
Architectural style
Victorian: Second Empire
Areas of significance
Education; Architecture; Social History
Level of significance
Evaluation criteria
A - Event; C - Design/Construction; B - Person
Property type
Historic function
Single dwelling
Current function
Single dwelling
Periods of significance
1900-1924; 1875-1899
Significant year
ca. 1884
Number of properties
Contributing buildings: 1
Non-contributing buildings: 2
Non-contributing structures: 1

Update Log 

  • November 1, 2017: Updated by Michael Miller: Updated "Status" & "Description" and Added "Year Lost"
  • December 8, 2015: Updated by Michael Miller: Updated "Status" and "Description"
  • October 20, 2014: Photo imported by Michael Miller
  • October 22, 2013: Updated by Michael Miller: Added "Description" & "Overview"



Bon Haven
Posted March 2, 2017, by Michael Miller (michael_a_miller [at] yahoo [dot] com)

Yes, it's already been gutted and approval was given just last week for it's demolition. The necessary funds to save the house were not even close to being met:

Bon Haven
Posted February 25, 2017, by Carol Kistler-Seymore (rubytues85 [at] bellsouth [dot] net)

Is it true??? The city issued a permit for demolition!?!? Can nothing be done to save this grand old historic beauty??? So sad...

Bon Haven
Posted February 3, 2015, by Michael Miller (michael_a_miller [at] yahoo [dot] com)

Seems like this property went from being endangered to on life support.