St. Paul's School - Watson Hall Teacherage circa 1905

This restored home on Orange Street was once the back section of a dormitory for students of St. Paul’s School on Ann Street whose cornerstone was laid in 1900. The school operated for 37 years until the death of its founder/head mistress, Mrs. Nannie Pasteur Geoffroy.

The unique, stacked corner front porches once faced the back courtyard of St. Paul’s School and overlooked what is now the newer part of the St. Paul’s Episcopal Church Cemetery.
This area was most likely used for outdoor activities. An old photograph shows a large group of students watching their band perform on the grounds.

In the mid-1940’s this and two other building were saved from demolition, moved nearby and converted to private residences. Watson Hall on Orange Street was purchased for historic restoration in 2000, was moved forward on the lot, and the interior rebuilt with a two-story rear addition.

The old post card on the right is the dining hall and dormitory.

The retained multiple front doors of the home once provided entry to small classrooms on what is now the right front of the house—one up, one down.
Historical evidence is still visible on the upstairs level, marking where a separating wall once existed. Scorch marks on the classroom floors remain where the wood-burning stoves once served for warmth. The structure also functioned partly as a teacherage, or lodging for teaching staff—hence the name Watson-Hall Teacherage.

In 1960 George Huntley III, a Beaufort High School senior, wrote an article in Echoes of the Past, titled “Nannie Geoffroy Revived, Developed St. Paul’s School.” “The dormitory building rooms,” he noted, “were equipped with white enameled beds, chiffoniers, and wardrobes, while the sanitary washstands with running water added to the comfort.
The building was equipped with adequate bathrooms with hot and cold water and lighted throughout with electricity.”

Local residents still recall their childhood association with St. Paul’s School with imagined or real memories of what once occurred inside the walls of this historic building.
One recalled watching, as a kindergartner, her teacher step out the door of the classroom, onto the porch to talk to her “beau.” Above is an old post card of St. Paul's School.