“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”

Anderson in Anderson County, South Carolina — The American South (South Atlantic)

Bank of Anderson Building - ca. 1891

Bank of Anderson Building - ca. 1891 Marker image. Click for full size.
By Brian Scott, July 25, 2009
1. Bank of Anderson Building - ca. 1891 Marker
This building was erected as the home of the Bank of Anderson, an outgrowth of the Anderson National Bank founded in 1872 with Col. Joseph Newton Brown as president. The early bank was located on the west side of the square. It was the second banking institution established in the city. In 1891 the Anderson National Bank was reorganized and renamed the Bank of Anderson. Its first president was B.F. Mauldin. The bank continued in operation until 1925. The original entrance to this building was on the corner. In early years this was the site of a general store owned by Christopher Orr and later a mercantile establishment owned by Col. Bayliss F. Crayton.

1776 ABC - ABBA 1976

Erected 1976.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Notable Buildings.
Location. 34° 30.15′ N, 82° 38.983′ W. Marker is in Anderson, South Carolina, in Anderson County. Marker is at the intersection of East Benson Street and South Main Street (South Carolina Highway 28), on the right when traveling
Bank of Anderson Building - ca. 1891 Marker image. Click for full size.
By Brian Scott, July 25, 2009
2. Bank of Anderson Building - ca. 1891 Marker
east on East Benson Street. Marker is located on the north side of the building, to the right of the main entrance. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 102 East Benson Street, Greenville SC 29601, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 10 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Sullivan Hardware Co. -- 1875 (within shouting distance of this marker); In Commemoration of Black Pioneers (within shouting distance of this marker); The Four Way Test (within shouting distance of this marker); Anderson County Law Enforcement Officers Memorial (within shouting distance of this marker); Masonic Temple -- 1889 (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Anderson County Court House -- 1898 (about 300 feet away); Anderson County Confederate Monument (about 300 feet away); William Church Whitner (about 300 feet away); Anderson: "The Electric City" (about 300 feet away); Fant's Book Store -- 1851 (about 500 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Anderson.
Regarding Bank of Anderson Building - ca. 1891. The National Bank Building is included in the Anderson Downtown Historic District, listed in the National Register of Historic Places February 23, 1979.
Also see . . .
1. Anderson Downtown Historic District. The Anderson Downtown Historic District is primarily significant as a well-preserved late nineteenth/early twentieth century commercial area.
East Benson Street Block image. Click for full size.
Anderson County by Howard Woody, 1876
3. East Benson Street Block
This shows the public square's south side. On the left was the Fant & Son Building, and next was the Christopher Orr Hotel (c. 1845), which was renovated in 1876 and called the "Centennial House." The first floor has Orr's tavern and a retailer, while the second floor had rooms for hotel guests. On the far right of the scene, Col. B.F. Crayton built his store, which in 1865 saved the town from being burned. The Bank of Anderson was located at the Crayton site.
(Submitted on July 29, 2009, by Brian Scott of Anderson, South Carolina.) 

2. Col. Joseph Newton Brown - Find a Grave Entry. Burial: Silver Brook Cemetery, Anderson, Anderson County, South Carolina. (Submitted on July 29, 2009, by Brian Scott of Anderson, South Carolina.) 

3. Orr Family. Article appearing in The Charlotte Observer on Monday, June 18, 1928, detailing the Orr family and the immediate ancestors and descendants of Christopher Orr. (Submitted on September 17, 2010, by Brian Scott of Anderson, South Carolina.) 
Additional comments.
1. National Bank of Anderson
This structure was constructed circa 1883 to house the Anderson National Bank, the first bank organized in Anderson (incorporated circa 1873). This two-story brick Italianate structure features a bracketed cornice and paired arched windows with hood moldings. Alterations have been made to both the windows and door on the first floor, and a large addition to the corner was built in the 1940s. (Source: National Register nomination form.)
    — Submitted July 29, 2009, by Brian Scott of Anderson, South Carolina.

2. Colonel Joseph Newton Brown
Col. Joseph Newton Brown, who was colonel of the Fourteenth
Bank of Anderson Building image. Click for full size.
By Brian Scott, July 25, 2009
4. Bank of Anderson Building
Regiment of South Carolina Volunteers in the Confederate Army, is one of the few surviving Confederate officers who commanded South Carolina troops in the great war between the states. Colonel Brown's life and services have meant much to his home city of Anderson, where he has been greatly esteemed not only for his military record, but as a lawyer, business man and banker for half a century.

He was born two miles east of Anderson December 16, 1832, son of Samuel and Helena T. (Vandiver) Brown. His paternal grandfather, John Brown, was a native of Baltimore, Maryland, and of English descent Samuel Brown was a merchant and planter and gave all his life to his business and private affairs. Helena T. Vandiver was a descendant of Jacob Vander Weer, a Dutch settler of New York in 1650. He was in the Dutch army which captured from the Swedes Fort Christina, now Wilmington, Delaware, in 1655. Colonel Brown's maternal greatgrandfather, Edward Vandiver, was a Revolutionary soldier, fought in the battle of Eutaw Springs, and had six sons who were Baptist ministers, one of them being Rev. Sanford Vandiver, the father of Helena T. Vandiver.

Joseph Newton Brown when two years old accompanied his parents on their removal to Townville, and he lived there until he established his home at Laurens in 1855. His people were quite well to do, and he grew up free from financial care
Bank of Anderson Building image. Click for full size.
By Jane M. Bolt, Anderson County Sketches, 1969
5. Bank of Anderson Building
and pursued the sports and vocations of the healthy country lad. He attended the old field schools, had some experience as clerk in his father's store, and continued his education in the private schools conducted by Wesley Leverett at Anderson and later the Classical School of Wesley Leverett and Manning Belcher at Williamston. On removing to Laurens in 1855 Colonel Brown entered mercantile life and soon afterward took up the study of law with Col. James H. Irby. He was admitted to the bar in 1857, and then became a partner of Colonel Irby under the name Irby & Brown. This partnership was dissolved by the death of Colonel Irby in 1860. Colonel Brown then practiced with R. P. Todd, but early in 1861 both partners left their professional business to join the Confederacy in the service of their state.

January 11, 1861, Colonel Brown joined Company D, the Abbeville company, Gregg's six months' regiment on Sullivan's Island. On March 5th he went to Morris Island and was in a detail in a battery at Light House Inlet during the bombardment and surrender of Fort Sumter. Mr. Brown was elected captain upon the organization of Company E of the Fourteenth Regiment, and commanded the company at Port Royal Ferry January I, 1862, the first battle in which the regiment was under fire. The Twelfth, Thirteenth and Fourteenth regiments, comprising Gregg's Brigade, were on the coast until
Corner of East Benson and South Main Streets image. Click for full size.
By South Carolina Postcards Volume IX: Anderson County, 1908
6. Corner of East Benson and South Main Streets
Birds-eye-view taken from the Hotel Chiquola, showing the Confederate Monument and park, the Bank of Anderson in the center, and City Hall in the upper right background.
April, 1862, when they were ordered to Virginia. There the First Regiment and Orr's Rifles were added to the brigade, which after General Gregg's death was known as McGowan's Brigade, Jackson's Corps, Army of Northern Virginia. Colonel Brown commanded his company at Games' Mill June 27, 1862, and was severely wounded in the left arm. At the second battle of Manassas he was again wounded. February 20, 1863, he was commissioned lieutenant-colonel of the Fourteenth Regiment. He commanded the regiment at Chancellorsville and Gettysburg, and for his services at the battle of Gettysburg was promoted to colonel, his commission being delayed, however, until September 17, 1863. The record of the Fourteenth Regiment and incidentally that of Colonel Brown is one of brilliant performance in practically every campaign undertaken by General Lee and General Jackson's forces and in every important battle in the Army of Northern Virginia. Colonel Brown commanded the brigade at times. By a desperate assault the brigade took the Bloody Angle at Spottsylvania Courthouse. Of the early part of the battle Major-General Wilcox's official report stated: "Among the wounded was its chivalric commander, Brig.-Gen. McGowan, and the further command of the brigade devolved upon Colonel Joseph N. Brown, I4th S.C. Regiment. * * * The brigade held the position _without support or relief till four o'clock next morning,"—seventeen
Corner of East Benson and South Main Streets image. Click for full size.
By South Carolina Postcards Volume IX: Anderson County, 1910
7. Corner of East Benson and South Main Streets
At the time of this photo, the Bank of Anderson's address was 202 South Main Street. The next stores on Benson Street were Orr and Gray (104), Leader Dry Goods (106), Lesser and Company (108-110), C.S. Minor 5&10 (112), Morrow-Bass (114-116), and the Masonic Hall (118).
hours' continuous fighting without rest, food, or water, under terrible flank fires and against fresh relays of Federal troops. The Federals reported: "Trees over a foot and a half in diameter were cut in two by musketry. We not only shot down an army, but also a forest. * * * Probably the most desperate engagement in modern warfare."

Colonel Brown was captured at the fall of Petersburg, and held as a prisoner of war on Johnson's Island until July, 1865.

After the war Colonel Brown removed to Anderson and in October, 1865, formed a partnership with J.P. Reed. From 1874 to 1881 he conducted a very large and successful practice alone, there, until 1888, was associated with J.L. Tribble and William S. Brown. Since 1888 he has been practically retired from his profession, taking, however, some important cases until past his eightieth year. In 1872 he took an active part in organizing the State Savings and Insurance Bank of Anderson, and was also one of the organizers of the National Bank of Anderson in 1873. He was president of the latter institution until it liquidated its affairs in 1892, when it ranked eighth in the United States in the value of stock per share.

Colonel Brown was a member of the Lower House of the Legislature in 1886-87 and drew up the bill for refunding the state debt. He has been a prominent member of the Baptist Church and has served
National Bank of Anderson Building, Courthouse Square image. Click for full size.
By National Register Nomination Form, 1978
8. National Bank of Anderson Building, Courthouse Square
as deacon of the congregation at Anderson for over forty years. In all the state there is no finer example of the true and courageous soldier and the dignified veteran of the great war between the states. Colonel Brown has been successful, whether measured by his accumulations or his services, and has dispensed his good fortune liberally. His name in Anderson has been synonymous with public spirit and generosity. His generosity is especially associated with the Anderson Public Library. This library is housed in one of the most adequate library buildings in the state, and the building in its present form is largely due to the liberality of Colonel Brown, who when Mr. Carnegie refused to increase his allowance to provide for an adequate building, made a gift of $10,000 to the Library Association, which induced Mr. Carnegie to enlarge his gift, thus making it possible to build a larger and better building. Half of Colonel Brown's gift has been used as an endowment fund.

Colonel Brown married Miss Lizzie Louisa Bruce February 28, 1866. She was a daughter of Thomas and Nancy Bruce of Anderson County. Colonel and Mrs. Brown celebrated their golden wedding anniversary in 1916, and she lived until the following January. Colonel Brown has one daughter, Varina D. Brown. (Source: History of South Carolina by Yates Snowden, pgs 45-46.)
Corner of East Benson and South Main Streets image. Click for full size.
By Brian Scott, July 25, 2009
9. Corner of East Benson and South Main Streets
  — Submitted July 29, 2009, by Brian Scott of Anderson, South Carolina.

3. Benjamin Franklin Mauldin
Benjamin Franklin Mauldin, banker, for the year 1904 to 1905 president of the South Carolina Bankers association, is president of the Bank of Anderson, in which town he has resided since his early manhood. He was born in Anderson county on March 24, 1850. His father, whose name was also Benjamin Franklin Mauldin, was a merchant and a Baptist minister, and was a member of the Secession convention in 1861,—a business man full of public spirit, and of the strictest integrity of character, he was well known throughout the county, and had a reputation in the state at large. His mother, Mrs. Adaline Tyrrel (Hamilton) Mauldin, had a marked influence upon the character of her son in early boyhood, and has always retained an altogether exceptional place in his memory. She was descended from Archibald Hamilton, who had emigrated from Scotland and married Frances Calhoun. His earliest known ancestor in America on his father's side was Joab Mauldin, who made swords for the Revolutionary soldiers.

He was born in the country and lived for a large part of his boyhood in the village of Williamston. He did not have robust health in his boyhood; but he won a reputation for energy and activity, even as a boy. His earliest
Col. Joseph Newton Brown image. Click for full size.
By Brian Scott, 1896
10. Col. Joseph Newton Brown
inclination was toward the life of a farmer and the pursuit of scientific agriculture. He entered Furman university, at Greenville, South Carolina, but was not graduated, withdrawing at the end of the second year of the co.urse by reason of the lack of funds, the war having "swept away his father's property."

In 1867 as a man he began to support himself, having a position in the internal revenue office at Anderson, South Carolina. He almost immediately developed a marked inclination to the study and practice of banking; and in 1872 he was made assistant cashier of the National Bank of Anderson. In 1891 he became cashier of that bank. He organized and became president of the following named banks: the Bank of Due West, the Bank of McCormick, Bank of Hodges, and the Lowndesville bank, as well as of the Bank of Mt. Carmel, the Bank of Trenton, and the Bank of Townville. Having been chosen to organize a state bank under the name of the Bank of Anderson, he became president of that bank in January, 1906,—a position which he still holds. The State Bankers association of South Carolina chose Mr. Mauldin as its president for the year 1904 to 1905.

On May 22, 1872, he was married to Miss Mary E. Reed, and they have had three children, all of whom are living in 1907. He is a Democrat, "of the Grover Cleveland type," of conviction and principle. He finds his amusement
Brown Family Tombstone<br>Old Silverbrook Cemetery, Anderson, SC image. Click for full size.
By Brian Scott, November 8, 2011
11. Brown Family Tombstone
Old Silverbrook Cemetery, Anderson, SC
Joseph Newton

1832 - 1821
His Beloved Wife
Elizabeth Louis

Entered Into Rest
January 11, 1917
Their Daughter
Varina Davis

Entered Into Rest
January 26, 1947
and recreation in amateur farming, devoting his attention especially to the raising of poultry and of pet stock.

He is a member of the Baptist church, and has for some years held the office of deacon in that church.

His address is 603 North Main street, Anderson, South Carolina. (Source: Men of Mark in South Carolina by James Calvin Hemphill, pgs 275-279.)
    — Submitted July 29, 2009, by Brian Scott of Anderson, South Carolina.

4. Colonel Bayliss Crayton
Colonel Bayliss Crayton, who lived to be Anderson's oldest citizen both in the years of his life and the years of his residence, came to the place when it was a very new little village, in 1838, to clerk for his uncle, B. F. Mauldin. In 1841 Mr. Mauldin retired and Mr. Crayton succeeded to the business. He moved from Mr. Mauldin's location on Brick Range, and occupied several places at different times. His last and most pretentious mercantile establishment was situated on the corner of Benson and Main streets, long occupied by the Bank of Anderson. The main floor of the store was approached by a short double flight of horse-shoe shaped stairs just within the street door, and it was there that Anderson women from before the war until about 1882 bought their finery.

Mr. Crayton was born in Greenville
Benjamin Franklin Mauldin, Jr. image. Click for full size.
Men of Mark in South Carolina by James Calvin Hemphill
12. Benjamin Franklin Mauldin, Jr.
Benjamin Franklin Mauldin's father, Benjamin Sr., was a merchant, Baptist minister, and signer of the South Carolina Ordinance of Secession.
in 1820, but it is with Anderson County that his name is associated. He at one time represented the county in the Legislature, and in 1878 he was elected State Senator from. Anderson and served four years. He was chairman of the first board of County Commissioners, provided for in the constitution of 1868. Colonel J. W. Norris and Colonel W. S. Pickens were the other members, and they managed the affairs of the county in an able and satisfactory manner, especially in regard to the Alms House, or "County Home," as Anderson prefers to call it.

Mr. Crayton was a warm advocate of the stock law which agitated the state greatly in the seventies and early eighties, by which stock were required to be fenced in. Before that time stock roamed at will, and the farmers had to keep all of their fields fenced to protect their crops. After the adoption of that law all of the old time unsightly rail or "snake" fences disappeared, and the country lay open.

Mr. Crayton engaged in farming on an extensive scale. He was the most progressive farmer of his day, and introduced many new methods into the community. He kept fine blooded stock, and the fairs, which were the delight of the people in the seventies, were the result of his efforts, and did much to awaken interest in good stock. The fair grounds were located where Mr A. G. Means and Mr. J. M. Paget now live. There was a huge
Benjamin F. Mauldin Tombstone image. Click for full size.
By Brian Scott, January 31, 2012
13. Benjamin F. Mauldin Tombstone
building with an open gallery on the second story, and the things displayed therein were a feast to the eye, and a stimulus to the imagination. Without there were places for the live stock and a race track. Some of the little people of those far off days grew up and saw great world fairs at New Orleans, Atlanta, Chicago and St. Lords, but not one of them appeared as wonderful, as marvelous, as had those old Anderson fairs of their childhood. Just as neither St. Paul's Cathedral, St. Peter's, nor Cologne were to those same childish eyes grown old finer or more impressive than was the old Johnson Female University buildings which were the first big brick public buildings those little eyes had ever seen, just as to the same not a skyscraper in New York City approaches half so near to Heaven as did the beautiful tapering spire of the old dignified rectangular Anderson Baptist Church.

In 1868 Mr Crayton organized in the county an Agricultural and Mechanical Society which did much for the farmers of the section. Some years after the war, finding the labor of the free negroes unsatisfactory, Mr. Crayton was instrumental in bringing to the county a number of German laborers. He employed many of the himself and induced some other progressive farmers to use them. The Germans proved good citizens. Most of them soon became independent farmers, and some of the best planters of the
Carnegie Library Building (Arts Center) -<br>405 North Main Street image. Click for full size.
By Brian Scott, July 25, 2009
14. Carnegie Library Building (Arts Center) -
405 North Main Street
The Carnegie Library was formed by the Women's Christian Temperance Union's Library Association. Construction began in 1905 and opened the library opened its door on February 27, 1908. Andrew Carnegie donated money for the library, Col. Joseph Newton Brown provided the property, and G.B. Casey was the architect. The library remained at this location until 1971. Currently, it has been adapted for use as part of the Arts Center.
county are their descendants.

The workers were known as “Mr. Crayton's Germans” and as long as the original emigrants lived they preserved toward him a most kindly feeling, considering him their special protector. In his mercantile business Mr. Crayton employed first and last a great number of young men, and his interest in them, and friendly counsel helped many of them to attain a higher goal than some of them had contemplated.

When life insurance first began to be practiced in Anderson Air. Crayton applied to a company to be insured, and was rejected on account of physical fragility. In his old age the old man used to chuckle and tell how he had outlived the doctor who examined him, the agent from whom he solicited papers, the very company itself. He was Anderson's first banker, lending money in connection with his mercantile business before the war. It was not until 1872 that a bank was organized in the town, and Air. Crayton was one of its directors. Its president was Colonel J. N. Brown, Mr. J. A. Brock, cashier, and Air. Frank B. Mauldin, assistant cashier. It was located on Brick Range, and was called The Anderson National Bank.

At the beginning of the War Between the States Mr. Crayton closed his store and joined Orr's Regiment. Pie was appointed quartermaster of the regiment, but later had to resign on account of ill health. He was
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appointed by President Davis state's depository at Anderson, and handled for the government large amounts of money and bonds. In 1862 he was elected to the legislature and re-elected in 1864. In 1865 he went to Greenville to attend a called meeting of the legislature, which was prevented from meeting in Columbia by Stoneman's invasion. Mr. Crayton*s interests were, however, agricultural, mercantile and civic rather than political.

He was in his prime a figure of great force and distinction, not only in the county, but throughout the state and to some extent throughout the South. He was for many years president of the State Agricultural Association, and had many honors and distinctions conferred upon him.

He lived to be almost ninety years old, retaining his faculties to the end. He married Miss Evelyn Benson sometime in the forties, and an old number of either The Highland Sentinel, or The Anderson Gazette, thanks the young couple for the gift of a delicious cake sent after the wedding to the printers. The marriage supper took place in the Benson Hotel, kept by the bride's parents. Mrs. Crayton, too, lived to be very old. The couple were the parents of three children who grew up; they were Samuel, who married Miss Sallie Nevitt; Frank, who married Miss Mary Broyles, and Kate, who married Mr. Sloan Maxwell. (Source: Traditions and History of Anderson County
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by Louise Ayer Vandiver, pgs 153-154.)
    — Submitted July 29, 2009, by Brian Scott of Anderson, South Carolina.
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