Gilfillin and Houston Building

Also known as: Greenville Bakery, Greenville Auto Sales
217-219 E. Washington St., Greenville, South Carolina


Gilfillin and Houston Building

Photo taken by Michael Miller in April 2021



Street View 


The Gilfillin and Houston Building is an excellent example of the vernacular expression of the commercial style built in the first quarter of the twentieth century in downtown Greenville, during a significant boom period in the city’s growth and development as a commercial and textile manufacturing center. This two-story commercial block, constructed ca. 1915, was built as a speculative development project for Gilfillin & Houston, a real estate and insurance company founded in 1899 by Eugene Alexander Gilfillin (1875-1958) and Louis Houston. The building’s façade, laid in five-to-one American or common bond, is organized into two storefront sections, each being flanked by rusticated brick pilasters two stories in height. Each section contains a rehabilitated commercial storefront with a recessed single-leaf entrance with glass transom, and flanking brick bulkhead and display windows divided into three segments. Above the entrance and both storefronts is a wooden frieze and cornice that visually divides the building’s two levels. The façade’s visual division is accentuated further by the presence of a metal cornice that breaks or is open at the center. Crowning the building’s façade is a curvilinear brick gable and parapet embellished with a central, circular, limestone-keyed and brick-surrounded cartouche containing the letters “G” and “H” intertwined. Listed in the National Register June 9, 2004. - SCDAH

National Register information 

Posted to the National Register of Historic Places on June 9, 2004
Reference number
Architectural style
American Movement: Early Commercial
Area of significance
Level of significance
Evaluation criteria
C - Design/Construction
Property type
Historic functions
Business; Specialty store
Current functions
Business; Specialty store
Period of significance
Significant year
ca. 1915

Update Log 

  • April 7, 2021: New photo from Michael Miller
  • September 11, 2014: Updated by Michael Miller: Added "Description" & "Street View" and Imported Photo
  • September 11, 2014: Photo imported by Michael Miller