What is the Story Behind Charleston Green?

Charleston Green

Our fair and Holy City of Charleston, South Carolina, is painted with dabs and dots of a single signature color, which is commonly referred to as Charleston Green. It's a color that could dress up the shabbiest Charleston single house, and aggrandize the smallest freedman's cottage.

A green so dark it appears black, it lends an air of subtle chameleon mystery to streets with light streaming through moss draped trees. The color changes as you move and elevates what might have been a simple flat black to a rich and dignified tone.

The History Behind Charleston Green

Charleston Green lends a formal sensibility, but the purported history is more rebellious. The origin of the color is contested, but the story goes that after the American Civil War, the Union sent buckets of plain black government-issued paint down to Charleston to gloss over what war had done to the city. But Charlestonians, less than impressed with boring black, added yellow and blue (or green, depending on the source) to make the deep forest green now named for the city where it originated. 

How to Use Charleston Green on Your Home

If you're strolling Downtown Charleston on the brick, pavement, or cobblestone streets, you'll notice the hue applied to front doors, window shutters, Italianate trim and even balustrades. There's no right or wrong way to use Charleston Green, but do remember that direct sunlight will heat the dark color and could cause it to bubble, or even be hot to the touch—a danger those moss draped trees can alleviate, since the Charleston housing market is quite hot enough on its own.

This deepest-deep green hue can be used in a variety of different exterior color schemes. The most classic is off-white with Charleston Green shutters and doors. Green shutters can compliment a lighter green home, a yellow home, or even a pink one.

If you'd like to add a touch of black-tie class, but don't want to darken your overall palette, try painting just the front door, or brushing the window sashes with Charleston Green while the casing remains white. Some homes paint only their front steps in the color. Window boxes are a nice place to add a deep green to bring out the green leaves and flowers and provide a visual anchor to the shape of the windows. Think of them as the strong brows on the face of your home.

You can also pull the color inside by using it on an interior staircase or in a study. Give a high-style makeover to a small half bath with a stunning high gloss enamel finish or treat a mantle to a stroke of dark green.

While the color chip is readily available from Historic Charleston Foundation's collection at your nearest Sherwin-Williams, you could also mix your own using a local recipe:

DIY: Charleston Green Recipe

10 ounces black paint

4 ounces green paint

½ ounce yellow paint 

Now that you know what to look for, the next time you're walking South of Broad , you'll more easily spot the difference between a true black hue and the trademark tint that we call Charleston Green. 

Looking for something different? See below for current listings downtown Charleston!

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61 1/2 Tradd Street
Charleston, SC 29401
South Of Broad
Residential

MLS# 17028367 / Active
3 br, 2 ba, 1 half bath, 2016 sqft

Perfect pied a terre in a secluded South of Broad location. This 3 story masonry home is the original kitchen house for the Jacob Mott House circa ... 

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$1,695,000
Provided courtesy of Lois Lane Properties

207 St Philip Street
Charleston, SC 29403
Elliotborough
Residential

MLS# 17028411 / Active
3 br, 2 ba, 2 half bath, 2720 sqft

Great opportunity in downtown Charleston. This building is perfect for investor looking for a prime rental unit which has both office and living sp... 

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$904,900
Provided courtesy of BHHS Southern Coast Real Estate

12 Porters Court
Charleston, SC 29403
Cannonborough-elliottborough
Residential

MLS# 17028417 / Active
2 br, 1 ba, 1 half bath, 956 sqft

Excellent opportunity to own a Charleston Single below the crosstown from under $500K! Walk to work, shopping, restaurants and pubs, MUSC, The Coll... 

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$459,000
Provided courtesy of Dana Properties, LLC

40 Gibbes Street
Charleston, SC 29401
South Of Broad
Residential

MLS# 17028296 / Active
3 br, 2 ba, 1 half bath, 1858 sqft

Charming brick home located South of Broad in Downtown Charleston! Situated on a quiet street on a high lot just steps from the battery, this home ... 

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$1,050,000
Provided courtesy of Keller Williams Realty Charleston
Open House
Sat October 21st, 1:00pm - 4:00pm
22  Bennett Street Charleston, SC 29401

22 Bennett Street
Charleston, SC 29401
Harleston Village
Residential

MLS# 17028170 / Active
5 br, 4 ba, 1 half bath, 3700 sqft

Perfect family home in a great location! Beautifully restored home in Harleston Village has an open floor plan that's perfect for entertaining or ... 

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$1,639,000
Provided courtesy of Keller Williams Realty Charleston

175 Concord Street
Charleston, SC 29401
French Quarter
Residential

MLS# 17028159 / Active
3 br, 2 ba, 1 half bath, 1958 sqft

This luxury condo is located in the historic French Quarter and enjoys spectacular views of Waterfront Park from its private corner balcony/covered... 

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$1,600,000
Provided courtesy of Daniel Island Real Estate Co Inc

41 Tradd Street
Charleston, SC 29401
South Of Broad
Residential

MLS# 17028140 / Active
3 br, 3 ba, 1 half bath, 3200 sqft

The Jonathan Badger House is a Pre-Revolutionary masonry dwelling and architectural ''gem'' which is believed to have been built sometime after 174... 

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$2,495,000
Provided courtesy of Daniel Ravenel Sotheby's International Realty

23 Cannon
Charleston, SC 29403
Cannonborough
Residential

MLS# 17028097 / Active
4 br, 2 ba, 1368 sqft

This circa 1840 ''Like New'' Charleston home was largely rebuilt in 2007 and is a short term rental property. Currenly leased as a licensed STR fo... 

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$795,000
Provided courtesy of Daniel Ravenel Sotheby's International Realty

22 Tradd Street
Charleston, SC 29401
South Of Broad
Residential

MLS# 17028035 / Active
3 br, 3 ba, 1 half bath, 3053 sqft

Fantastic opportunity to own this fully renovated, historic South of Broad home, just steps from the Battery and Rainbow Row! Forget the headache o... 

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$2,290,000
Provided courtesy of iSave Realty

51 Chapel Street
Charleston, SC 29403
Wraggborough
Residential

MLS# 17028017 / Active Contingent
5 br, 3 ba, 3244 sqft

Seldom available! Historic Charleston Single-style triplex, just minutes to the College of Charleston, Charleston School of Law, The Citadel, and M... 

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$950,000
Provided courtesy of EarthWay Real Estate

151 Wentworth Street
Charleston, SC 29401
Harleston Village
Residential

MLS# 17027970 / Active
1 br, 1 ba, 760 sqft

Welcome to our charming condo in the middle of downtown Charleston with parking and private courtyard attached to the Unit. The unit is located on ... 

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$449,000
Provided courtesy of AgentOwned Preferred Group

9 Bogard Street
Charleston, SC 29403
Elliottborough
Residential

MLS# 17027756 / Active
3 br, 2 ba, 1742 sqft

Charming 1840 Charleston single house with wide columned double piazzas. Striking architectural brick fireplaces are the focal point of each of the... 

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$595,000
Provided courtesy of Disher Hamrick & Myers Res Inc

102 Ashley Avenue
Charleston, SC 29401
Harleston Village
Residential

MLS# 17027850 / Active
4 br, 3 ba, 1 half bath, 3271 sqft

A wonderful opportunity for elegant & charming living with income potential too.From the beautiful hardwood floors with mahogany border,to the orna... 

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$1,375,000
Provided courtesy of Carolina One Real Estate

28 Savage Street
Charleston, SC 29401
South Of Broad
Residential

MLS# 17027518 / Active
3 br, 3 ba, 1860 sqft

Charming Charleston Single with fenced brick courtyard, updated kitchen and bathrooms. Large rooms with high ceilings. Each bedroom has its own f... 

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$1,000,000
Provided courtesy of Disher Hamrick & Myers Res Inc

16 Water Street
Charleston, SC 29401
South Of Broad
Residential

MLS# 17027492 / Active
3 br, 2 ba, 1 half bath, 2284 sqft

Beautifully restored, sun-filled, circa 1815 home loaded with historic details and in mint condition. The owners have spared no expense maintaining... 

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$1,595,000
Provided courtesy of Carriage Properties LLC

160 Spring Street
Charleston, SC 29403
Residential

MLS# 17027457 / Active
8 br, 4 ba, 1 half bath, 4589 sqft

Turnkey vacation rental! Two separate fully furnished and equipped homes, both have vacation rental licenses with the City of Charleston and strong... 

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$2,437,500
Provided courtesy of iSave Realty

1 Bogard Street
Charleston, SC 29403
Residential

MLS# 17027423 / Active Contingent
4 br, 2 ba, 1 half bath, 1420 sqft

Legal short-term rental in the heart of Elliottborough! Walking distance to Upper King, College of Charleston, easy access to I-26 & the Crosstown.... 

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$877,500
Provided courtesy of iSave Realty

348 King Street
Charleston, SC 29401
Downtown
Residential

MLS# 17027311 / Active
2 br, 1 ba, 1 half bath, 824 sqft

Welcome to 348 King Street, unit K! This 2 bedroom, end-unit condo is located in the heart of Charleston in the historic King Street shopping distr... 

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$450,000
Provided courtesy of Carolina One Real Estate

33 Lockwood Drive
Charleston, SC 29401
The Harborage At Ashley Marina
Residential

MLS# 17027257 / Active
n/a br, n/a ba, n/a sqft

Remarks: 40 X 18 foot boat slip at The Closet to the parking lot!!! At this location you dont have to haul all your supplies a mile!!!Harborage At ... 

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$59,000
Provided courtesy of BHHS Carolina Sun Real Estate

212 Coming Street
Charleston, SC 29403
Residential

MLS# 17027195 / Active
3 br, 2 ba, 1 half bath, 2072 sqft

Contemporary single family home at the corner of Coming Street and Brewster Court just two blocks from the Upper King Street Design and Restaurant ... 

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$759,000
Provided courtesy of Fogle & Associates LLC

3 Kracke Street
Charleston, SC 29403
Elliottborough
Residential

MLS# 17027209 / Active Contingent
2 br, 2 ba, 916 sqft

Upgraded to perfection and move-in ready. Each bedroom has a private bath. Located on a quaint and quiet street just a few blocks from the Medical... 

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$425,000
Provided courtesy of Carolina One Real Estate
Residential, Land, Other Disclaimer: p>Broker Reciprocity The data relating to real estate for sale on this web site comes in part from the Broker ReciprocitySM Program of the Charleston Trident Multiple Listing Service. Real estate listings held by brokerage firms other than Marshall Walker Real Estate are marked with the Broker ReciprocitySM logo or the Broker ReciprocitySM thumbnail logo (a little black house) and detailed information about them includes the name of the listing brokers. Last updated on 10-19-2017 5:03pm est. The broker providing these data believes them to be correct, but advises interested parties to confirm them before relying on them in a purchase decision. Copyright 2017 Charleston Trident Multiple Listing Service, Inc. All rights reserved.
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