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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44 Legare Street
Charleston, SC 29401
South Of Broad
Residential

MLS# 18010776 / Active
3 br, 3 ba, 1 half bath, 2454 sqft

Circa 1865. This newly renovated classic Charleston Single House is located on one of the premier streets in Charleston's historic, South of Broad ... 

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$2,110,000
Provided courtesy of Handsome Properties, Inc.

63 Rutledge Avenue
Charleston, SC 29401
Berkeley Court
Residential

MLS# 18010865 / Active
1 br, 1 ba, 517 sqft

Fall in love! Perfect downtown pied a terre! Enjoy your very own PARKING SPOT, right in front of your unit. Host parties in your lush PRIVATE ga... 

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$429,000
Provided courtesy of Brand Name Real Estate

14 Lockwood Drive
Charleston, SC 29401
Ashley House
Residential

MLS# 18010685 / Active
1 br, 1 ba, 705 sqft

Stunning views and convenient living. This tenth floor condo has incredible views of Charleston and the Arthur Ravenel Jr Bridge. Open floor plan, ... 

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$325,000
Provided courtesy of Carolina One Real Estate

26 State Street
Charleston, SC 29401
French Quarter
Residential

MLS# 18010626 / Active
2 br, 2 ba, 1 half bath, 1820 sqft

The bustling Charleston docks were just a block away on ''Bay Street'' when an English ship's captain built himself this two-story home with a thir... 

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$1,895,000
Provided courtesy of Charleston Premier Properties

5 Kirkland Lane
Charleston, SC 29401
Harleston Village
Residential

MLS# 18010820 / Active
4 br, 3 ba, 1 half bath, 1848 sqft

Are you searching for a Modern Day Charleston single Home Slightly North of Broad? Then you don't want to miss 5 Kirkland Ln situated in a highly s... 

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$905,000
Provided courtesy of RE/Max Elite

254 Coming Street
Charleston, SC 29403
Cannonborough-elliottborough
Residential

MLS# 18010499 / Active
4 br, 2 ba, 1989 sqft

This Great Charleston Single Duplex A & B units that have separate Water, Electric & Gas meters and lies within a FEMA ''X'' zone. With a 1 bedroom... 

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$599,000
Provided courtesy of Dunes Properties of Mt. Pleasant

5 Gadsdenboro Street
Charleston, SC 29401
The Gadsden
Residential

MLS# 18010389 / Active Contingent
2 br, 2 ba, 1271 sqft

Introducing The Gadsden, downtown Charleston's newest luxury condominium community. Situated next to the city's new Gadsdenboro Park, The Gadsden w... 

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$769,000
Provided courtesy of East West Realty, LLC
Open House
Sat April 21st, 12:00pm - 2:00pm
17  Menotti Street Charleston, SC 29401

17 Menotti Street
Charleston, SC 29401
Ansonborough
Residential

MLS# 18010348 / Active
3 br, 2 ba, 1 half bath, 1855 sqft

Newly Renovated Charleston Single in the heart of Ansonborough. Walking distance to Gaillard Auditorium, Marion Square, King Street, Historic Distr... 

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$987,500
Provided courtesy of AgentOwned Preferred Group

46 South Street
Charleston, SC 29403
Residential

MLS# 18010369 / Active
3 br, 1 ba, 1 half bath, 1524 sqft

Three bedrooms, One and half bath home located in beautiful Historic Charleston. This spacious home has a living room, separate dining room, eat in... 

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$545,000
Provided courtesy of Excellence Realty Group

14 Lockwood Drive
Charleston, SC 29401
Ashley House
Residential

MLS# 18010215 / Active
2 br, 2 ba, 1158 sqft

Location, location, location! This is a beautiful 2 bedroom, 2 bath condominium located on the 10th floor of the Ashley House, with breathtaking vi... 

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$374,900
Increase +$27,000
Provided courtesy of Dunes Properties of Chas Inc

1 Chalmers Street
Charleston, SC 29401
French Quarter
Residential

MLS# 18009963 / Active
1 br, 1 ba, 626 sqft

Located in the heart of the French Quarter, this circa 1850 charming condo is not to be missed! From the cobblestone street to the exposed brick w... 

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$499,000
Provided courtesy of William Means Real Estate, LLC

28 Smith Street
Charleston, SC 29401
Harleston Village
Residential

MLS# 18009915 / Active
2 br, 2 ba, 1532 sqft

This historic Charleston Single home built in 1880 in downtown Charleston not only exudes low country charm, but its just one block from the gorgeo... 

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$850,000
Provided courtesy of Matt O'Neill Real Estate

52 Aiken Street
Charleston, SC 29403
Eastside
Residential

MLS# 18009902 / Active
4 br, 2 ba, 1626 sqft

GREAT MULTI FAMILY OPPORTUNITY in generous DR2F Zoning District. This large Charleston Single vernacular house close to everything has endless poss... 

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$425,000
Provided courtesy of Keller Williams Realty Charleston

146 S Battery
Charleston, SC 29401
South Of Broad
Residential

MLS# 18010255 / Active
4 br, 3 ba, 3378 sqft

One block from the Battery and the first time on market in 40 years. Wonderful opportunity to make this home your own as single family or back to 2... 

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$1,299,000
Provided courtesy of Belser Thompson Real Estate

5 Bennett Street
Charleston, SC 29401
Harleston Village
Residential

MLS# 18009888 / Active
3 br, 2 ba, 1 half bath, 1694 sqft

Beautiful end-unit townhouse located in the heart of Downtown close to both MUSC and Roper Hospitals, and directly across the street from Cannon Pa... 

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$750,000
Provided courtesy of Carolina One Real Estate

65 Vanderhorst Street
Charleston, SC 29403
Radcliffeborough
Residential

MLS# 18009810 / Active
3 br, 2 ba, 1548 sqft

Newly renovated apartment on the highly sought after Vanderhorst street. This apartment is close to everything; MUSC, CofC, King street, you name ... 

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$475,000
Reduced -$20,000
Provided courtesy of Keller Williams Realty Charleston

110 Logan Street
Charleston, SC 29401
Harleston Village
Residential

MLS# 18009830 / Active
4 br, 2 ba, 1 half bath, 2690 sqft

This fully renovated, solid masonry, pre-Civil War era home has many of the original details from 1804, such as original heart of pine floors, 4 br... 

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$975,000
Provided courtesy of Carriage Properties LLC

8 B Coming Street
Charleston, SC 29401
Harleston Village
Residential

MLS# 18009658 / Active Contingent
3 br, 2 ba, 1344 sqft

8 B Coming Street. Excellent location in the middle of downtown, barely a hundred yards to the College of Charleston and King street. Well designed... 

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$439,900
Provided courtesy of Carolina One Real Estate

179 Wentworth Street
Charleston, SC 29401
Harleston Village
Residential

MLS# 18009811 / Active
3 br, 2 ba, 1 half bath, 2254 sqft

Handsome Carolopolis home with soaring ceilings and windows. Beautiful historic detailing throughout. First floor rooms include formal living room,... 

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$1,150,000
Provided courtesy of Carolina One Real Estate

10 Colonial Street
Charleston, SC 29401
South Of Broad
Residential

MLS# 18009585 / Active
4 br, 3 ba, 1 half bath, 3186 sqft

Located in the coveted South of Broad neighborhood, this 1912 Charleston cottage is the perfect downtown home. It is just footsteps from Colonial ... 

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$1,399,000
Reduced -$50,000
Provided courtesy of The Cassina Group

7 E Hampstead Square
Charleston, SC 29403
Eastside
Residential

MLS# 18009607 / Active
3 br, 2 ba, 1 half bath, 1740 sqft

NEW CONSTRUCTION on the peninsula with NO HOA Hampstead Square is a quiet, 1-street neighborhood tucked within the East Side community, close to Ci... 

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$565,000
Provided courtesy of Luxury Simplified Real Estate, INC
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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 04-19-2018 5:06pm 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 2018 Charleston Trident Multiple Listing Service, Inc. All rights reserved.
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