James Glen

Governor December 1743 – June 1756

James Glen was born in Scotland in 1701. After studying law at the University of Leiden (the Netherlands), he became a government official in Scotland. In 1738, Glen was named royal governor of South Carolina.
William Bull, the lieutenant governor, who had been acting governor since November 1737, was finally able to step down when governor James Glen arrived in December 1743.
The British government replaced James Glen with William Henry Lyttelton in 1756, but he and his wife remained in South Carolina until 1761. James Glen died in Scotland in 1777.

Glen, James. A Description of South Carolina; Containing Many Curious and Interesting Particulars Relating to the Civil, Natural and Commercial History of that Colony. London: printed for R. and J. Dodsley, 1761.
Ravenel, Mrs. St. Julien (Harriott Horry Rutledge). Charleston. The Place and the People. New York, 1912; rep. ed. Southern Historical Press, 1972.
Robinson, W. Stitt. “Glen, James.” Walter Edgar, ed. South Carolina Encyclopedia. University of South Carolina Press, 2006.
Smith, Henry A. M. “Charleston and Charleston Neck. The Original Grantees and the Settlements along the Ashley and Cooper Rivers.” South Carolina Historical and Genealogical Magazine. Vol. 17. (1918).
Waddell, Gene. "Charles Pinckney's Double House." Charleston Architecture, 1670-1860. Charleston: Wyrick & Company, 2003.


Road to Watboo Bridge, from Charleston, by Goose Creek Bridge & Strawberry Ferry. 1787. American Memory, Library of Congress http://memory.loc.gov/

During his tenure as governor, James Glen occupied two of the colony’s finest houses. By June 1744, he held Governor’s House plantation on Charleston Neck, with the ca. 1712 brick house originally built as a residence for South Carolina’s governors. Thomas Shubrick bought the Governor’s House farm in 1749; it became known as Belvedere during the Shubrick family’s ownership.

U.S. National Archives and Records Administration http://arcweb.archives.gov/

James Glen was the first of South Carolina’s royal governors to make his residence in the new mansion house built for Charles and Eliza Lucas Pinckney. Construction was completed in 1750, and the Pinckneys might have begun renting out the house even before their 1753 departure for England. The Pinckney mansion burned in the fire of December 11, 1861.

Henry A. M. Smith, “A Platt of Charles Town.” South Carolina Historical Magazine, 1908 (copy in City Engineer’s Plat Book, S. C. History Room, Charleston County Public Library)

The Pinckney Mansion stood on Colleton Square, nine acres of high land, marsh, and “a little Creek,” granted to Sir Peter Colleton in 1681.

Bishop Roberts and W. H. Toms, The Ichnography of Charles-Town at High Water. London, 1739.

Site of Pinckney Mansion, 1739. The bridge that led north from the fortified town eventually became known as Governor’s Bridge.

R. P. Bridgens & Robt. Allen, "An Original Map of the City of Charleston." 1852 (S. C. History Room, Charleston County Public Library)

Pinckney Mansion, 1852.

U.S. National Archives and Records Administration http://arcweb.archives.gov/

The Pinckney Mansion was not occupied by family members until Charles Cotesworth Pinckney returned from Europe in 1769. During their terms in office, royal governors James Glen, Thomas Boone, William Henry Lyttelton, and Charles Greville Montagu all resided in this “commodious mansion house.” Ca. 1865 view of the house, which burned in 1861.

City Engineer's Plat Book, page 2 (S. C. History Room, Charleston County Public Library)

Ruins of the Pinckney Mansion, 1866.