This house, built in 1896-97 and designed in the Beaux Arts style by noted S.C. architect Charles Coker Wilson, was the home of Maj. James Jonathan Lucas (1831-1914). An earlier house here, which burned in 1892, had been the home of Dr. Thomas Smith (d. 1875), who married the widow of Judge Samuel Wilds. Lucas served Charleston District as a state representative 1856-1862.
In 1862, Lucas, a Citadel graduate, organized and became major of Lucas' Battalion of Heavy Artillery, which spent most of the Civil War on James Island near Charleston. Maj. Lucas moved to Society Hill in 1865, and later served as a director of the Cheraw & Darlington RR and Atlantic Coast Line RR. Japonica Hall was listed in the National Register of Historic Places in 1989.