The Spotted Dragon 
  The Courtyard  


This was my parent's house in Charleston, West Virginia. They bought it in 1987 right after I got married. When we saw it for the first time, my wife told my dad "You have lost your mind!" To put it bluntly, it was a mess! This grand old house had been turned into 5 apartments in 1941.

My dad is an architect specializing in historic preservation. He has always wanted to live or work in an historical building, and when the opportunity presented itself to purchase this house, he couldn't resist. He told mom about the house, and when she saw it, she said "I know you're kidding." But, she had faith in him, and they restored it with a few minor changes. Until Dad retired, it was their house and an office - the best of both worlds!

This house, named "Breezemont", was built in 1905 by Cornelius Clarkson Watts, who was a former Attorney General of West Virginia. It is said that this house was Watt's way of "keeping up with the MacCorkles". Watt's friend and political ally, former Governor William MacCorkle, had built "Sunrise" (a majestic mansion which is now a Bed & Breakfast), which stands a little over a mile away in South Hills.

Built of quarried stone, with huge columns gracing the wraparound front porch, and Italian tile on the roof, it has a commanding view of the city of Charleston and the capitol building. The architectural style of this house is Neo-Classical. It has 7,800 square feet, with 10' high ceilings, and three floors plus a cellar. There are 18 rooms, some in an octagon shape, and 56 windows (most at least 6' high). The two upstairs porches are supported by large concrete pillars and have wooden ceilings.

The house has now been mostly restored to near it's original glory, and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.The first floor contains the office for the business. A large foyer greets visitors and clients, with a large conference room on the left and the offices on the right. The conference room is separated from the foyer by a large "pocket door". A framed painting of Mr. Watts hangs in the conference room, overlooking the business and the house.

The upstairs contains the residence, with the master bedroom and bath, living room,dining room, kitchen, and den. The top floor contains a pool room, a music room, and a guest bedroom.

From the Rose Garden
From the Rose Garden
Front of House
Front of House
Back of House
Rear of House
Foyer (Front Door)
Foyer (Rear Stairs)