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Statesboro Inn History

Our place in Statesboro’s rich architectural tradition.

The Statesboro Inn and Restaurant is comprised of two separate side-by-side homes, the Main House (also called the Raines House) and the Brannen House. Both are recognized on the National Register of Historic Places. The homes were built during Statesboro’s bustling heyday from the late 19th Century through the 1920s, fueled by the twin factors of railroad transportation and Sea Island cotton cultivation.

The Main Raines House

A 1905 Victorian/Neoclassical hybrid, the Statesboro Inn’s Main House was originally constructed in 1905 for $3,000 by the Raines family, owners of the successful W.H. Raines Hardware Company. The home was renovated with modern amenities and opened as an inn with nine guest rooms in 1985.

The Raines House architectural significance is its unique turn-of-the-century design that represents the transition between the Victorian and the Neoclassical periods, combining the neoclassic preference for symmetry and simple shapes with the more picturesque Victorian gables, broad porches, angled fireplaces, porticos and bay windows.

It stands among the largest, most impressive and intact historic houses remaining in Statesboro’s Historic District. The house was ahead of its time, featuring indoor plumbing with hot water, plaster walls and a telephone room. It was rewired for electricity before electricity was available anywhere else in town.

A 1991-92 addition blended perfectly with the original architecture and provided a kitchen, a 100-seat banquet facility and seven additional guest rooms.

The projecting two-story gabled entrance can be seen both as a simplified picturesque Victorian feature as well as a rudimentary pedimented portico. Exterior architectural details are relatively restrained in Neoclassical character with simple cornice, architrave, and corner moldings, medallions and Tuscan columns, yet highlighted by an elaborate Palladian front entry of the Victorian era. Interior detailing and woodwork features Neoclassical fireplace mantels with diminutive classical columns and extensive coffered ceilings are eclectic in character.

The transitional architectural style of the Raines House is a perfect representation of an abundant period in Statesboro’s domestic architecture and characteristic of much of the turn-of-the-century domestic architecture in Georgia’s smaller cities and towns. It is also a characteristic of houses "designed" by builders, probably using stock architectural features, rather than by architects.

At one time, Statesboro’s North and South Main Streets were lined with houses like this, some larger and more elaborate (like the John A. McDougald House, now the Beaver House Restaurant), others smaller and simpler. About half a dozen of these houses remain, despite Main Street becoming largely a commercial strip since the mid-20th century. Of those that remain, one is more Victorian (the M. M. Holland House across the street), and the McDougald House is more Neoclassical.

The Raines House not only stands apart in its neighborhood, but its transitional style rivals similar homes city-wide, where perhaps a dozen come close to its age, size or exterior and interior integrity. An impressive house in its day, it has become even more impressive today with the demise of so many of its contemporaries.

The Brannen House

The Brannen House is a Victorian farmhouse residing alongside the Raines House. Built in 1881, it became part of Statesboro Inn and Restaurant in 1996 with a renovation featuring four guest rooms.

Other Historic moments at Statesboro Inn

“Blind Willie” McTell writes “Statesboro Blues”
President George W. Bush visits