By Kay Willis Burns
Tuesday, December 11, 2018 10:25AM
The Poppe House, 805 South McDuffie Street in Anderson, was named for German resident, Charles Henry Julius Poppe, who operated a variety store in downtown Anderson. Poppe was a native of Leipsig, Germany and he and his wife purchased the home on McDuffie Street in 1862. Elizabeth Harrison Earle, widow of Captain Samuel Girard Earle, had the house built for her son and his bride circa 1853. The bricks were made by slaves. Features of the Poppe House included cedar closets, pine floors, and 12-inch-thick-walls. The Poppe family made this their home until the early 20th century.
Mr. Poppe was known to be a cultured gentleman, educated in music and the arts. He emigrated to America after the German Revolution of 1848-1849. During the Civil War, he served in Company A., 15th S.C. Regiment until his health began to decline. Later on, he opened his mercantile store and was best remembered for selling unusual toys and beautiful dolls.
Mrs. Poppe was English and suffered with blindness for many years. In the Poppe House gardens, empty wine bottles outlined the flower beds, enabling Mrs. Poppe to find her way around by tapping the bottles with her cane. Others tell the story that Mrs. Poppe had pieces of gold buried in the backyard and would mysteriously find them and pull them out of the ground to surprise the neighborhood children.
The Poppe family lived in the house more than 50 years.
The Poppe House is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.