SPARTANBURG, S.C. (WSPA) – A bunch of people are coming together to give another purpose to an iconic piece of Spartanburg history.
The Seay House is believed to be the oldest home in the City of Spartanburg built in the late 1700s and this home is about to get renovated for a new purpose.
The organization, “Brown Girls Read,” was on the hunt for a new home.
“Brown Girls Read is an organization that supports young girls of color to reach their academic and social potential,” founder Nicke Haney said.
Haney told Janie Salley, Spartanburg City Councilwoman District Five, about wanting to expand her organization.
“I met a young lady that had an after-school program who needed some assistance in a place to hold the after-school program,” said Haney.
With a specific request to not be on a main road, but rather, a place embedded in a community.
“Wanting to be in a neighborhood where there was access to those people that have issues with transportation and parents that may work long hours,” said Haney.
The Seay House was also looking for a way to continue its legacy.
“I talked with the historical society Mr. David Wood who is the director he agreed that an education program within the boundaries of the facility would be a great success,” said Haney. “Two puzzle pieces coming together, and okay we can renovate this building, and once we do that it would be available to the neighborhood.”
It is also a much-needed project.
“Needing to be updated to continue the purpose that’s at hand and to educate those on the history of Spartanburg and this being the first home in Spartanburg,” Salley added.
Salley was able to secure a $200,000 grant from the South Carolina Department of Archives and History for the renovations to transform these old bones into a place where children can learn, in a building full of its own lessons.
“The roofing needs to be repaired the trimming needs to be redone and there is electrical work that needs to be taken care of as well as adding some AC to the facility,” Salley said. “To be able to provide an education in a historical building that had been run in its later years, by two sisters by two females I think is very impactful,” Haney said.
Once the renovations are complete, the Seay House will be a tutoring hub that focuses on English and math.
Renovations are expected to begin this fall and will conclude in January.