1633-1635 Main Street1633-1635 Main Street
German immigrant John C. Seegers debuted this Italianate style building, designed by architect Gustavus Theodore Berg, in late 1865 as a brewery, saloon, and wholesale and retail shop for wine, liquor, and ice made at his factory to the east of the South Carolina Lunatic Asylum. That state-of-the-art facility was capable of producing 2500 pounds of ice in five hours. During the 1870s and 1880s, the building's second story also served as a meeting place for several German organizations, including the Schuetzen Verein and Freundschaftsbund, shooting and friendship societies. Seegers' son-in-law, Christopher C. Habenicht, joined the business sometime in the 1870s, and in 1892 opened C.C. Habenicht Bottle Works in the 1100 block of Taylor Street.
After the overthrow of Reconstruction, Wade Hampton III's administration expanded the system of convict labor dramatically as a form of racial control and source of state revenue. In 1877, Seegers began leasing 150 convicts from the State Penitentiary to work his farm outside of Columbia. This was the first arrangement of its kind in South Carolina, and Seegers remained a pioneer in the trade until he was priced out of the market. He later represented Richland County in the South Carolina House of Representatives during the 1880s.
In 1937, an Art-Deco inspired renovation altered the building’s original appearance. That modern treatment was removed in 2015 during the building’s adaptive use as Lula Drake Wine Parlor and the Pastor’s Study, a project that received an Historic Columbia preservation award in 2018.