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1924 – 2024

The Villa Celebrates Its 100th Anniversary

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What a remarkable year this is for the Art Museum!  It was 100 years ago that a charming beach cottage—now home to all our exhibition galleries—was built on a quiet stretch of the Atlantic coastline eight miles north of where it stands today.  The fortunes and misfortunes of the 100 years that have followed its construction is a saga of survival and triumph and certainly a history worth celebrating.

The home was built in 1924 by Joseph Maner Lawton and his son Edward Maner Lawton, whose construction company, Southern Builders of Florence, SC, was one of the earliest to build cottages along this once sparsely populated stretch of beach.  The home’s original owner, Eugene Thomas Cannon, a scion of the South’s once massive textile industry, vacationed at the home for a quarter century until it passed to another textile family in 1945 and was affectionately dubbed “Springmaid Villa” by its new owner, Elliot Springs.  The head of Springmaid Industries, Colonel Springs and his family, along with executives of their thriving company, enjoyed the beach retreat for decades.

The home had borne witness to the rise of its closest neighbor, the Ocean Forest Hotel with its grand surroundings—a visionary project withered in scale by the onset of the Great Depression.  It withstood the destructive forces of Hurricane Hazel in 1954 and then the 1974 implosion of the Ocean Forest Hotel when the ensuing rise of beachfront condominiums brought more drastic changes.

Eventually the Close Family, the Springs heirs, turned their home over to a construction company whose owner planned to tear down the Villa to make way for condominiums.  Fortunately, he was charmed by the president of the Waccamaw Arts and Crafts Guild to donate the home as a gallery for the non-profit organization.  Three months later the home made a 100-block dramatic move south to Springmaid Beach and rested on land leased from Myrtle Beach Farms. That move marked the end of the Villa’s six decades as a beach home and getaway for textile magnates and its tentative beginnings as the Grand Strand’s only “home for the arts.”

It took more than another decade of fund raising, planning and expanding the vision by a determined group of believers who reached out to generous government entities, foundations, businesses and individuals—all who took heroic measures to bring the dream of a community art museum into reality.   This period included further testament to the Villa’s survival prowess when Hurricane Hugo struck in 1989, protected successfully by a chain-link fence from wind-driven debris.

Long story short, 13 years after its move to Springmaid Beach, Springmaid Villa opened its doors to the public as the Franklin G. Burroughs-Simeon B. Chapin Art Museum on land given by the Burroughs and Chapin Company, which had evolved from Myrtle Beach Farms.  It had been transformed into a $1.7 million non-profit institution whose story grows richer with every exhibition mounted on its walls and every visitor who passes through its doors.

To celebrate these 100 momentous years, the Art Museum invites you to join The Villa Club: Celebrating Our Past | Building Our Future.

Celebrating the Art Museum Villa’s 100th Birthday

Thank You to
THE VILLA CLUB MEMBERS

44th & King Southern Pub
Artists on 8th Avenue
Marga + Howard Barnard
Don Baker + Roy Hardison
Elizabeth + Lawton Benton
Miriam Berrouëtt
Brenda + Brown Bethune
Claudia Bornholdt + Brian Pinke
Clay + Emma Ruth Brittain
Marie Claire + Matthew Brittain
Charles + Sally Brodhead
Burroughs & Chapin Company | Jim Apple/Gail Granchelli
Nancy Cave
Lucy E. Cesar-Jedacek
Joan + Ken Chartier
Michael + Sharon Clayton
The Close Family
Will Close
Dr. + Mrs. D. Conaway
Dr. Charles D. Coyle + William H. Miller
The Davis Family | In Memory of Nancy Davis
Edgar + Cynthia Dyer
Ed + Claudia Farmer
Archie Franchini + Sean Atkinson
Rachel + John Gandy | Commemorating the 100 Year Celebration
Patricia Goodwin
Jonathan Green + Richard Weedman
Vern Hearl
Greg + Renee Hembree
Christy Holliday + David Douglas | In honor of Margg + John Holliday
Margaret + Hal Holmes
Sandy Hubbard + Tom Logan
Susan E. Hudgins
Lily Grace + Tom Hudson
Judy Ingle | In Memory of Ron Ingle
The Jackson Companies – Emily + Manuel Vallarino
The Jackson Companies – Laura + Winston Hoy
The Jackson Companies – Kaki + Johnny Williamson
The Jackson Companies – Rachel + John Gandy
The Jackson Companies – Jeanne + Joe Mize
Rosemary Long Jenrette
Adam + Freya Johnson
Kyle + Anna Johnson
Jean Johnston-Smith | In loving memory of Virginia Gregory for her love of art and life!
Mike + Carolyn Jones
Ann G. Charles Jordan | In memory of Harry + Jane Charles
Milton + Joyce Karetas | In memory of Harry Love
Milton + Joyce Karetas | In memory of Gail M. Crowley
Anna Brittain + Rickie LeMay
Ms. Louise Lewis
Martha Lewis | In memory of Carolyn S. Burroughs
Barry + Jill Lieberman
Lindsay Family Trust – Ross M. Lindsay
LS3P – Jim Hubbard
Magnolia Row LLC
Jo Ann Marino
Bubba Meng + Dennis Vibbert
Joanne P. Milnor
Myra Miracle + Michael Chapman
Lorry Neher
Fred + Cheryl Newby
Kathy Owens
Erin + Tommy Pate
Terry + Tim Patterson
Justin + Michelle Plyler | In memory of Eloise Plyler
Senior Golfers of America – Cynthia Powell | In memory of June + Bob Swanson and Brooks + Margaret Goldsmith
Lineta + Bill Pritchard
Lindsay + Luke Rankin
Brenda + Dick Rosen
Sam Sadove + Karen Fitzpatrick
Sanders Family Foundation – Annette + Dan Sanders, Anne Sanders, Donna + Rod Sanders | To commemorate the Life of Gaye Sanders Fisher
The Sandoz Family
David + Tami Seaborn | To memorialize Carolyn S. Burroughs
The Seagroves Family
Marce C. Singleton
Christi + Frank Sloan
Buck + Julie Waters
Jim + Lou Watson | In honor of Carolyn Burroughs
Ellen + John Yates | In honor of our grandchildren – Thomas + Luna Yates
Brett + Pam Yates
and Anonymous

Add your name to the Villa Club List, today – help us reach the goal of 100+!

THE FRANKLIN G. BURROUGHS-SIMEON B. CHAPIN ART MUSEUM IN MYRTLE BEACH

Myrtle Beach’s Franklin G. Burroughs-Simeon B. Chapin Art Museum strives to be one of the finest visual arts museums in the Carolinas. With 11 galleries that change throughout the year, Myrtle Beach’s only art museum offers exhibitions featuring paintings, textiles, sculpture, photography, video, ceramics, assemblage, collage and more. A visit to the Art Museum’s exhibitions can be enhanced by its lively programming, including artist receptions, tours, lectures, workshops and classes for both adults and children.