South Carolina Picture Project

Kineen Hotel — Mayesville, South Carolina

SC Picture Project  |  Sumter County  |  Kineen Hotel

This former hotel in the historic town of Mayesville was built in 1911 during the height of the town’s economic boom. When planter Matthew Peterson Mayes – known as “Squire” – established his plantation here in the 1820s, several other family members joined him, adding their own homesteads to the otherwise undeveloped landscape.

Kineen Mayesville

Linda Brown of Kingstree, 2014 © Do Not Use Without Written Consent

In 1852 the Wilmington and Manchester Railroad passed through Mr. Mayes’ property, and Mayes Station was constructed there to accommodate passengers. As a result, the community began to grow, though it suffered mightily during the Civil War, when the rails, cars, and depot were destroyed by Union soldiers.

Kineen Hotel Sumter County

Terry Lewis, 2011 © Do Not Use Without Written Consent

The railroad was soon repaired, however, and businesses that opened in Mayesville in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century thrived. The Kineen Hotel was established to accommodate traveling salesmen who frequently stopped for a night or two in the commercial district.

Kineen Hotel Lobby

Kim Wright of Sumter, 2014 © Do Not Use Without Written Consent

Unfortunately, the prosperity of Mayesville was temporary; its economy was dependent on trains, and the advent of automobiles and the interstate highway system eventually depleted the town of most of its commerce. Still, the town had enjoyed a few decades of commercial vitality, including the early success of the Kineen Hotel.

Kineen Hotel Interior

Terry Lewis, 2011 © Do Not Use Without Written Consent

The hotel was the enterprise of W.N. McElveen, and the name “Kineen” derived from the combination of his name with that of his business partner, a man named McKinney. Sadly, the accommodation folded during the Great Depression and was sold at auction to Robert James Mayes, Jr.

Kinen Hotel Aerial

Ken Toney of Boiling Springs, 2016 © Do Not Use Without Written Consent

Mayes utilized the building for several purposes, including officespace and a commissary for farm workers. Mayes’ son, William, found even more uses, employing it as a place to process tobacco, cure sweet potatoes for the Gerber Baby Food Company, and provide storage to local residents.

Kineen Hotel

John Jensen of Charleston, 2017 © Do Not Use Without Written Consent

Around 1998 the building was purchased by the Whitaker family, proprieters of a cabinet-making company. Owner Whit Whitaker envisioned restoring the building for a variety of businesses ranging from retail to restaurants.

Kineen Hotel

John Jensen of Charleston, 2017 © Do Not Use Without Written Consent

Those plans were never realized, and the Town of Mayesville purchased the building and received a $500,000 U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development grant in 2012 to convert the space into affordable housing and public recreational space.

Kineen Hotel Room

Kim Wright of Sumter, 2014 © Do Not Use Without Written Consent

The Kineen Hotel is listed in the National Register as part of the Mayesville Historic District:

The Mayesville Historic District is notable for its representation of the cultural, commercial, and architectural development of a small nineteenth century South Carolina community. The district, which encompasses the western half of the town, contains a concentration of eighty properties that represent a broad range of late nineteenth and early twentieth century vernacular architectural design, including commercial, residential (majority), and religious examples. Architectural styles include Neo-Classical, Victorian, Queen Anne, Colonial Revival, Commercial, and Bungalow. The visual appearance of the district reflects the evolution of this small rural town that developed as the result of the changing economic forces brought about by the establishment of rail transportation and subsequent commercialization in the late 1800s. Unfortunately, since its nomination many properties have been demolished or altered significantly.

More Pictures of the Kineen Hotel

Kineen Black And White

Kim Wright of Sumter, 2014 © Do Not Use Without Written Consent

Kineen Hotel Sumter County

Kim Wright of Sumter, 2014 © Do Not Use Without Written Consent

Kineen Hotel

John Jensen of Charleston, 2017 © Do Not Use Without Written Consent

Reflections on the Kineen Hotel

Contributor Kim Wright shares, “I like to take pictures of old, abandoned places. I knew that Mayesville has a lot of ‘closed’ up/run down places where I could take some interesting shots.”

Add your own reflections here.

Kineen Hotel Info

Address: South Main Street, Mayesville, SC 29104
GPS Coordinates: 33.986434,-80.208473

Kineen Hotel Map

Please Share Your Thoughts!

Did you enjoy this page? Do you have any information we should add? Send us your comments below — we can't wait to hear from you!

One Comment about Kineen Hotel

Steve Gorsline says:
August 11th, 2015 at 12:38 am

They received a $500,000 grant in 2012. Where is the money and what will be done to the building? I saw it today, 8-10-2015, and it lo – there is nothing left of the town.oks just like it does in these pictures. Nothing has been done. Even if they do something it seems like a waste ofmoney


Join Us on Facebook
Search for Landmarks


Abbeville ACE Basin Aiken Allendale Anderson Awendaw Bamberg Banks Barns & Farms Barnwell Batesburg-Leesville Beaches Beaufort Beech Island Belton Bennettsville Bishopville Blackville Bluffton Bridges Bygone Landmarks Camden Carnegie Libraries Cayce Cemeteries Charleston Charleston Navy Base Cheraw Chester Churches Clemson Clinton Clio Colleges Columbia Conway Cordesville Courthouses Darlington Denmark Dillon Donalds Easley Edgefield Edisto Elloree Fairfax Florence Folly Beach Forests and Nature Preserves Fort Mill Fountain Inn Gaffney Garden City Beach Georgetown Glenn Springs Graniteville Greeleyville Greenville Greenwood Greer Hamburg Hampton Hartsville Hemingway Hilton Head Historical Photos Historic Houses Honea Path Hopkins Huger Hunting Island Isle of Palms Jails James Island Jamestown Johns Island Johnsonville Johnston Kiawah Island Kingstree Lake City Lake Marion Lakes Lancaster Landrum Latta Laurens Lexington Libraries Lighthouses Little River Manning Marion McClellanville McCormick Military Mills Moncks Corner Mountains Mount Carmel Mount Pleasant Mullins Murrells Inlet Myrtle Beach National Register Newberry Ninety Six North Augusta North Charleston North Myrtle Beach Orangeburg Pacolet Parks Pawleys Island Pendleton Pickens Piers Pinopolis Plantations Pomaria Port Royal Post Offices Ravenel Restaurants Ridge Spring Ridgeway Rivers Roadside Oddities Robert Mills Rock Hill Rockville Rosenwald Schools Salters Saluda Savannah River Site SC Artists SC Heroes of the Alamo Schools Seneca Shrimp Boats Society Hill Spartanburg Sports Springs St. George St. Helena Island St. Matthews Stores Sullivan's Island Summerton Summerville Sumter Sunset Synagogues Town Clocks Trains & Depots Trees Trenton Troy Turbeville Ulmer Union Wadmalaw Island Walhalla Walterboro Waterfalls Water Towers West Columbia Westminster Winnsboro Yemassee York