Historic building to house Piedmont museum

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The historic Women’s/YMCA building in Piedmont has been purchased by the Piedmont Historical Preservation Society and will serve as the new home for the organization and the Piedmont museum. (Photo by Paul Porter)

Historic building purchased – to house Piedmont museum
A historic building in Piedmont has been purchased by the Piedmont Historical Preservation Society and will be the new home for the organization and the Piedmont museum.
The Piedmont Historical Preservation Society, a 501c(3) approved nonprofit organization annouced this week that it has purchased the beloved “Women’s Building” of Piedmont.
The now 4,070 square foot structure was built in 1908 by Piedmont Manufacturing Co. as a home for single women working in the mill. It also served as the Piedmont YWCA.
Over 100 years later, the building is set to house the artifacts of everyday life in the mill village as a museum and as the new home of the Piedmont Historical Preservation Society.
The Society has raised funds from grants and private donations to purchase the historic structure at 7 Piedmont Avenue. The current museum will move from a single room in the Piedmont Community Building to the “Women’s Building”.
“Everybody in Piedmont loves this place because they know that it was the YWCA and it’s such a beautiful building,” said Dr. Anne Peden, a member of the Piedmont Historical Preservation Society and the Greenville County Historic Preservation Commission.
Originally built on Main Street, the YWCA featured a kitchen, library and large sitting room downstairs and sleeping rooms upstairs. A foreword by A.S. Rowell in the Piedmont YWCA First Annual Report 1908-1909 speaks of the “beautiful and attractive YWCA building, with its cooking and sewing classes, its gymnasium and bathrooms, its library, night schools and music classes, its sweetly solemn vesper service on the holy Sabbath, with numberless schemes for pure and hallowed social joys…”

In addition to housing historic collections, the renovated building will be available for use by community groups, scouting organizations, and students studying the history of the Backcountry South Carolina and the textile industry.
Upstate preservation consulting firm Preservation South, LLC will be planning and overseeing the rehabilitation of the building.  They have guided many award winning preservation and restoration projects across the southeast including, most recently, the restoration of the Spring Park Inn for the Travelers Rest Historical Society.