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In This Issue
Events and Awards
Recent National Register Listings
Rehabilitation and Tax Credit Project Highlights
Dr. Crow Retirement
Dr. Cherry Appointment
Adolphsen Receives Award
Staff Spotlights
Restoration Staff Investigate Surry County Building
Oteen Building #9 to be Preserved
Picot-Armistead-Pettiford House Support Group Receives Donation
More Architectural Survey Data Online
Tobacco Barns Continue to be a Threatened Resource
Guastavino Tile
Keep Your Foundation Dry
Preserving Rosenwald Schools Available Online
FHWA Policy Paper on Section 4(f)
Federal Resources for Sustainable Rural Communities
New National Park Service Report on External Programs
Solar Panels and Historic Districts
Architectural Toys from the Past
Staff in the Field
Worth Saving
The Newsletter of the North Carolina Historic Preservation Office
Events and Awards

For statewide event lists, visit the HPO Facebook event listPreservation North Carolina event list, or a September-November calendar of events courtesy of the Federation of NC Historical Societies.


September 21 Preservation North Carolina presented its honor awards at the organization's annual conference in Asheville.  Recipients included HPO Restoration Specialist Jeff Adolphsen (see the article in this month's newsletter). Click here to read the full list of recipients and a description of the various awards.


October 11 HPO staff will lead 3 tax credit workshops in Durham over the coming months.  The first will be held at 7 PM at 1540 Hermitage Ct., the currently vacant Griswold House, and is open to the public. Contact Preservation Durham for more information at by email or by phone at (919) 682-3036.


October 13 Bellamy Mansion Museum is hosting  Family Fun Day from 10:00 am- 2:00 pm. Enjoy the day with historic games and activities, the songs of Susan Savia, a kitchen reenactment by Sulnora Spencer, and child-friendly house tours. Learn how children played in the nineteenth century and have fun with your family. The event is free and open to the public. Contact the museum for more information by phone at (910) 251-3700, by  email at or visit their website


October 16-18 Sustainability & Southern Historic Preservation Conference, co-sponsored by U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and U.S. Green Building Council, Georgia Chapter in partnership with Historic Preservation Division. HPD's contact is Sustainability Coordinator Roy Edwards - 404-463-8434.  Registration is only $50 for students, $99 for Public/Private Sector; Tours $25.


October 25 The Carolina Center for Jewish Studies, Center for the Study of the American South at UNC, and the UNC African and African American Studies Department will host a special fundraiser and preview of Aviva Kempner's film-in-progress, The Rosenwald Schools (scheduled for completion in late 2012) on Thursday, October 25 at 7:00 pm, Sonja Haynes Stone Center, UNC campus. For more information, contact the Stone Center.  


October 26 The North Carolina State Capitol Foundation is hosting a "Shaggin' and Shuckin'" oyster roast fundraiser at the State Capitol with musical entertainment by The Embers.  Tickets are $75 per person; proceeds will help fund the documentation of the State Capitol building to meet HABS standards. Click here for more information.


The American Institute of Architects (AIA) seeks communities that can demonstrate the capacity to convene a diverse set of community leaders and stakeholders for an intensive, collaborative planning process focused on long-term sustainability.  Funded communities receive pro bono services and funding up to $15,000. A cash match of $5,000 is required. Applications are due November 16, 2012.  For more information and to see examples of project reports, which often include a focus on historic resources, visit the AIA website.

Recent National Register Listings

Randolph Street Historic District (Davidson County), 

Prepared by L. Phillips, Listed 8/28/12


The Randolph Street Historic District historically was a hub of industrial activity in Thomasville, and the buildings flanking the wide main road into town are important reminders of the town's manufacturing history.  The district encompasses the High Point, Thomasville and Denton Railroad depot, two homes of industrialists, a furniture company warehouse, a concrete manufacturing machine shop, and the architecturally significant 1951 Neo-Gothic-style Memorial Methodist Church. 


Joshua James Blanchard House (Duplin County), 

Prepared by E. Turberg, Listed 8/28/12


The Joshua James Blanchard House, although built in the late nineteenth century, incorporates the form and classical features of plantation architecture dating to the earlier Greek Revival period in surrounding areas.  This continued use of the Greek Revival style is seen commonly throughout Duplin County into the first decade of the twentieth century, but the Joshua James Blanchard House is one of the few intact rural examples of this retarditaire use and the only known two-story example in the western part of the county.


Robert M. Hanes House (Forsyth County)

Prepared by L. Phillips, Listed 8/28/12


The Robert M. Hanes House, on Stratford Road in Winston-Salem, was the home of the long-time Wachovia Bank president from 1927 until his death in 1959. Hanes's professional accomplishments were significant in the area of banking, European economics immediately following World War II, and North Carolina's economic development. His final post was chairman of the committee studying the development of the Research Triangle Park and he was a key player in its establishment in 1959.  Important landscape architect Ellen Biddle Shipman designed the American colonial period-inspired garden with its boxwood borders, lattice garden house, and reflecting pool in 1937. 


Allen Jay School Rock Gymnasium (Guilford County), 

Prepared by L. Phillips, Listed 8/28/12


The Allen Jay School Rock Gymnasium is an important historic building at the first high school in southwest rural Guilford County, now within the High Point city limits.  Built in 1939 and funded by the New Deal Works Progress Administration, the gymnasium features an architecturally significant stone exterior.  The nearly one-and-a-half-foot-thick stone walls are laid in an uncoursed pattern with light-gray mortar. The building has a homemade, natural character and is an example of the then-popular Rustic Revival style of architecture.

Rehabilitation and Tax Credit Project Highlights


The two-story commercial building at 420 South Garnett Street in Henderson, Vance County, was rehabilitated for commercial use on the street with five apartments at the rear and upstairs with a construction investment of $639,000.

20 South Garnett Street, Henderson, Vance County, before and after rehabilitation.

The Hart-Marrow House in the Tarboro Historic District, Edgecombe County, was rehabilitated for continued use as two rental residential units with a construction investment of $60,000.

Hart-Marrow House, Tarboro, Edgecombe County

The Purvis G. Liles House in the Old Wilson Historic District, Wilson County, was rehabilitated for continued single-family use with a construction investment of $44,500.

Purvis G. Liles House, Wilson, Wilson County
Dr. Jeffrey Crow Retires Effective September 1

Dr. Jeffrey Crow retired after 38 years with the Department of Cultural Resources.  The former Deputy Secretary of the Department of Cultural Resources and State Historic Preservation Officer retired on September 1, but returned for a rousing retirement party on September 12.  He will be greatly missed! Click here to read more about his career with the department.

Dr. Kevin Cherry is Named Deputy Secretary and State Historic Preservation Officer 

Our new Deputy Secretary and State Historic Preservation Officer Dr. Kevin Cherry starts his tenure October 16.  Click here for more information.

StipeAwardJeff Adolphsen Receives Robert E. Stipe Award


HPO Restoration Specialist Jeff Adolphsen received the Robert E. Stipe Professional Award at the Preservation North Carolina Annual Conference in Asheville. Click here to read the presentation of the award. The Robert E. Stipe Professional Award is the highest honor presented to working professionals who demonstrate an outstanding commitment to preservation as part of their job responsibilities. 

Jeff Adolphsen (middle) receiving award, National Trust for Historic Preservation President Stephanie Meeks (left), PNC Vice Chairman Rodney Swink (second from right), and PNC Chairman Eddie Belk (right).

The award was established in 1983 to memorialize the many contributions of Robert E. Stipe of Chapel Hill, an educator in the field of historic preservation and a mentor to a generation of preservation professionals. The award recognizes career men and women who show exceptional leadership and/or dedication to the cause of preservation. Individuals working in the field of historic preservation are eligible, including staff of non-profit preservation organizations, architects, landscape architects, planners, teachers, contractors, consultants, and North Carolina State Historic Preservation Office staff. The recipient receives an engraved plaque and a $500 stipend. Congratulations, Jeff!  

Meet HPO Western Office Preservation Specialist Annie McDonald
Annie McDonald

Annie Laurie McDonald is the State Historic Preservation Office's (HPO) Western Region Preservation Specialist effective February 1, 2012. McDonald relocated to Asheville from Leesburg, Virginia, where she was the town's preservation planner for six years. Her prior experience includes several years serving as the Southeast Tennessee Development District's federal program liaison to the Tennessee Historical Commission and earlier as an architectural historian with the Washington, D.C., firm EHT Traceries.


McDonald holds a B.A. degree in art history from the Edinboro University of Pennsylvania and an M.A. in history and historic preservation from Youngstown State University. She has conducted rural and urban architectural surveys, written National Register nominations for individual properties and districts, coordinated workshops and a statewide conference, and has extensive experience with preservation planning and local historic district designation and review. She also is the author of Leesburg Then & Now. The Western Region Preservation Specialist represents the HPO's Survey and National Register Branch and serves as liaison with local historic preservation commissions in the twenty-five westernmost counties.

. . . And Part Time Employees Sam Franklin and Andrew Edmonds
Andrew Edmonds

Andrew Edmonds is a Geographic Information Systems (GIS) Specialist in the Historic Preservation Office.  He is responsible for the creation and quality control of geographic data, for the development and improvement of HPOWEB and map-centric mobile applications, and for supporting the HPO staff with ad-hoc, specialized cartographic deliverables (including customized printed maps, web applications, and analytical reports). Andrew earned a Master of Science degree in Geography from the University of South Carolina in 2006. He has worked for the office since the spring of 2009. 


Sam Franklin

Sam Franklin is a GIS Specialist for HPO and the Office of State Archaeology. His focus at the HPO is mapping, in GIS, the locations of rural resources from county-wide architectural surveys across the state. Sam grew up in Southern Pines, N.C., and graduated from UNC-Chapel Hill with a Bachelor of Arts in Geography before joining the HPO as an intern in 2010. Sam enjoys learning about the varied local history, architecture, and culture in each county he maps.

HPO Restoration Staff Investigate a Surry County Masonic Building


Masonic Building in Rockport, Surry County

Members of the Restoration Services Branch (Paul Fomberg, Jeff Adolphsen, David Christenbury, Mitch Wilds and Jennifer Cathey) traveled to the village of Rockford, Surry County, on September 10 to study the Masonic Building, long believed to have been built ca. 1797, and to give recommendations for its restoration. Rockford, now unincorporated, is located on the north bank of the Yadkin River and was the county seat from 1790 until 1851, when Yadkin County was formed from the part of Surry County south of the Yadkin River and Surry's county seat was relocated to Dobson. The Masonic Building was purchased by siblings Evelyn and Robert Holyfield in 1970 in order to preserve it and is now owned by the Rockford Preservation Society, Inc., which was organized in 1972 as a private, non-profit corporation and also owns the York Tavern and the Grant-Burrus Hotel site.


Structural detail of Masonic Building

The Masonic Building is a long and narrow two-story gable-front building on a raised stone basement. It originally had porches running along the north side of the building on both levels; however, only the porch on the main level survives. A later porch runs across the front of the building on the main level. Both levels have a large unheated room at the front of the building and a small room with fireplace at the rear, with an adjacent piazza room or traveler's room with fireplace on each level originally accessed from the porches. There may have been an exterior stair connecting the two levels of the porch. A store occupied the large room on the main level for many years, with the Masonic Hall occupying the large room on the upper level. A kitchen and a large storage room were originally located in the cellar. Abutting the south side of the building at the front is a small building constructed about 1914, which served as the community post office until 1975.


On-site investigations revealed that the building likely was built in the early nineteenth century, perhaps circa 1814 rather than 1797, for use as a store and residence. Evidence points to changes made to the upper level of the building, perhaps in the 1860s, for the use of the Masons. Alterations made to the building in the mid-twentieth century include the replacement of some of the original windows on the upper level with larger multi-paned windows, along with the removal of the upper level of the side porch. The RPS would like to restore the building and open it to the public.

Oteen Building #9 to be Preserved


Oteen Building #9 today

After years of abandonment, neglect, and the threat of demolition, it appears that Building #9 in the Oteen Veterans Administration (VA) Hospital National Register Historic District will be rehabilitated and put back into use by the Charles George VA Medical Center in Asheville. The project is proposed in three phases - stabilization of the exterior, then the interior, and finally rehabilitation of the entire building as part of the Medical Center's mental health program. Built in 1930 as a nurses' dormitory, the three-story, twenty-one bay, fireproof building stands in sad contrast to the recently rehabilitated nurses dorm that serves as the western headquarters of the Department of Cultural Resources' Office of Archives and History.


Historic postcard view of Oteen Building #9

The VA's proposal to demolish Building #9 to make way for a new Oncology Infusion Therapy and Sleep Study facility triggered review under Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act that requires federal agencies to consider alternatives to adversely affecting historic properties. As part of that process, local preservationists joined with the State Historic Preservation Office to offer alternatives to the loss and enlist support from elected officials for rehabilitation of the building. Upon reconsideration and study, the VA determined that it could build the new facility behind Building #9 and use the dorm and nearby doctors' residences for other programs.


Historic postcard view of the building with the current Western Office of the NC Division of Archives and History shown to the right

A scope of work for the first phase in preserving Building #9 has been received by the HPO and work should soon begin. Messages of encouragement and appreciation to the Director of the Medical Center, Cynthia Breyfogle, for the change in plans would help to keep this project moving in the right direction. Watch this space for periodic updates! 

Picot-Armistead-Pettiford House Support Group Receives a $5,000 Donation from Dominion Power to Fund Stabilization Efforts


The Plymouth Small Town Main Street Committee recently applied for a grant from Dominion Power on behalf of the support group working to stabilize the Picot-Armistead-Pettiford House in Washington County. The group now has the funds and materials necessary to start on the stabilization project. In addition to Dominion Power's gift, a local sawmill has donated lumber for this project and a roofing supplier will provide the standing-seam metal roofing at a sizable discount. Working with an engineer, the local building inspector has given the go-ahead to begin the stabilization. Volunteer Willie Drye is hopeful that Dominion Power will give additional money to support this project, as they have expressed interest in exploring the possibility of doing more.  Last year, funding was received from Preservation North Carolina in the form of a Stedman Incentive Grant, which will be used for a new roof.


Picot-Armistead-Pettiford House at the time of its listing in the National Register

On April 1, 2011, Mrs. Velma Braye of Tuskegee, Alabama, and her family met in Plymouth with representatives of the Plymouth Small Town Main Street Committee and National Underground Railroad Freedom Foundation historian Carl Westmoreland to discuss the future of the house identified in the National Register of Historic Places as the Picot-Armistead-Pettiford House. The family agreed to donate the 197-year-old house to be renovated and used as a museum depicting African American life in the South from the post-Civil War, pre-civil rights era.


Since that meeting, the Plymouth Small Town Main Street Committee has worked to establish a non-profit agency, to be named the Plymouth Museum Committee, to raise money to stabilize the house, start renovations, and begin organizing the museum. Also, Reid Thomas, restoration specialist in the eastern of the State Historic Preservation Office, and Ben Curran, who teaches historic preservation at Edgecombe Community College, have consulted on the restoration of the house and have assisted with the cataloging of the contents in preparation for storage.


The house in 2011 when threatened with demolition, Photo by Willie Drye

The effort to renovate the Picot-Armistead-Pettiford House has attracted much attention. Several stories about the effort have been published in the Washington (NC) Daily News, and the local weekly, the Roanoke Beacon. Eastern Living, a regional lifestyle magazine, published a story about the house's history and the renovation effort and WITN-TV and WUNC Radio have broadcast stories about it.


The Picot-Armistead-Pettiford House was built 1814 by Dr. Julian Picot, a Frenchman who is thought to have been the town's first medical doctor. In 1844, the house was bought by Robert Armistead, a Plymouth merchant. A persistent oral tradition holds that the house was used by the Underground Railroad before the Civil War, but uncertainties have arisen about that because the Armistead family owned slaves. Several owners held title to the house until 1914, when Jane Brinkley, a white Plymouth resident, sold the house to Reuben Pettiford, a black brick mason. This was an unusual transaction for that time. The house has remained in the hands of African American owners for nearly a century. During the Pettifords' ownership, the house served as a boarding house and hotel for African Americans. 

More Architectural Survey Data Added to Our Website

The newest additions to the scanned architectural survey reports include:



  • Asheville Architectural Survey Update, Phase I, 2011
  • Asheville Architectural Survey Update, Phase II, 2012


  • Lenoir County Survey Update (North of US 70), 2010
  • Lenoir County Survey Update (South of US 70), 2010


  • Rosenwald Schools in Edgecombe, Halifax, Johnston, Nash, Wayne, and Wilson Counties, 2007

Click here to view all of the survey reports that have been scanned to date.

Tobacco Barns Continue to be a Threatened Resource

A recent article in the Greensboro News and Record reminds us of the continued disappearance of a once ubiquitous resource, the tobacco barn.  Click here to read the article.


Guastavino Tile

UNC-Asheville has posted a video of John Ochsendorf's lecture on Raphael Guastavino presented in Asheville last winter.  Click here to watch the video.  The lecture starts after a 10-11 minute introduction by Peter Austin, who initiated research on the Guastavino Estate in Black Mountain and contributed information toward its National Register nomination.

Keep Your Foundation Dry, Moisture is the Main Cause of Deterioration of Historic Buildings

Restoration Specialist Reid Thomas spoke about preventing water damage in historic buildings at the Collections Care and Disaster Preparedness Workshop in Edenton on September 10. Click here to read his guest blog post. 

Revised Version of Preserving Rosenwald Schools Available Online


The publication Preserving Rosenwald Schools by May S. Hoffschwelle, aka the "blue booklet," has recently been revised with new case studies, a special section on interpretation, and a "Grassroots Guide to Preserving Rosenwald Schools." It is also now available in PDF and can be downloaded here.

FHWA Policy Paper on Section 4(f)


The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) has published a new Section 4(f) Policy Paper. It has been substantially revised in response to changes in Section 4(f) law under SAFETEA-LU and the FHWA/FTA Section 4(f) regulations that were issued in 2008. The Policy Paper will be followed by FHWA when approving the use of land from publicly owned parks, recreation areas, wildlife refuges, and public or private historic sites for highway projects. Webinars will be scheduled in the fall to introduce the paper and address questions.  For more information contact MaryAnn Naber at (202) 366-2060.

Federal Resources for Sustainable Rural Communities


The federal Partnership for Sustainable Communities released a new publication, Federal Resources for Sustainable Rural CommunitiesThree federal agencies-the Departments of Housing and Urban Development and Transportation, along with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency-came together in 2009  to create the Partnership for Sustainable Communities to help places around the country develop in more environmentally and economically sustainable ways.

To guide its work, the Partnership developed six livability principles:

  • Provide more transportation choices;
  • Promote equitable, affordable housing;
  • Enhance economic competitiveness;
  • Support existing communities;
  • Coordinate and leverage federal policies and investment;
  • Value communities and neighborhoods.
A New National Park Service Report Discusses External Programs


The National Park Service (NPS) recently released a new document that collectively addresses programs that fall outside the traditional scope of the park system, commonly referred to as the "external programs." Critical of the attention paid to these programs by the NPS, a task force convened by Preservation Action and consisting of twelve major national historic preservation organizations released a report entitled Aligned for Success...Recommendations to Increase the Effectiveness of the Federal Historic Preservation Program. It includes information on 28 programs including National Heritage Areas and the Historic Preservation Fund. For each program information is provided regarding the mission, background, program requirements, administration, and accomplishments. According the document, "...this document is the only place where these programs that take place outside national park boundaries are addressed collectively describing a complete mosaic of the NPS's outreach and mission."


Solar Panels in N.C. Historic Districts

by Kimberly Kooles, Policy Analyst, N.C. Solar Center, N.C. State University  


Across the country, individuals, businesses, organizations, and governments are all making efforts to minimize their impact on the environment. While sustainable practices can and do come in an assortment of measures, solar panels have taken on their own particular sort of popularity.  Adding fuel to this fire are more recent federal, state, and local financial incentives combined with the removal of regulatory barriers to the use of solar energy.  As solar technology improves and becomes more affordable, the increasing rate of installations is not likely to falter any time soon. The question is, then, "When and how are solar panels to be installed on historic buildings, in historic districts or at historic sites?"


The answer is not simple. On one hand, communities recognize that historic resources present special circumstances and that, without careful review, solar panels can have a direct and irreversible impact on character-defining features of a historic building or its context.  On the other hand, not every alteration to a historic resource is detrimental to those same values, and indeed, solar panels can be (and have been) installed without adversely affecting the significance or integrity of historic resources.  Allowing solar to be installed on non-significant additions, previously altered areas (those that have diminished integrity),  or perhaps less significant areas of a historic building can allow the property to meet sustainable energy goals without compromising or destroying the historic resource's integrity.


The relationship between laws designed to facilitate or remove legal barriers to the use of solar energy systems and historic preservation ordinances designed to protect historic resources has been specifically addressed in only a few states.  While an across-the-board exemption from prohibitions against solar panels would be exceptionally broad, exceptions for installations based on the application of reasonable guidelines should be considered. North Carolina's state policy fosters the development of renewable energy technology while preserving the integrity of the state's historic resources.


North Carolina currently has a general prohibition on the adoption of laws restricting solar energy systems on residential properties that is applicable to historic districts but authorizes local jurisdictions to regulate the location or screening of solar collectors by "requiring the use of plantings or other measures to ensure that the use of solar collectors is not incongruous with the special character of the district." Even under the general prohibition, local governments may limit solar energy systems to reduce visibility from the ground of those "installed (1) on the facade of a structure that faces areas open to common or public access; (2) on a roof surface that slopes downward toward the same areas open to common or public access that the facade of the structure faces; or (3) within the area set off by a line running across the facade of the structure extending to the property boundaries on either side of the facade, and those areas of common or public access faced by the structure."


North Carolina's policy allows local governments the leeway to protect their communities' historic resources on a case-by-case basis. Even so, very few of our North Carolina communities address renewable energy systems within local planning or preservation polices - making documents such as Asheville's Design Review Guidelines for the Montford Historic District an exceptional example instead of a systematic occurrence. There are still many jurisdictions which fail to address the installation of solar energy systems in any capacity. As with many things in life, ambiguity often leads to complications. Property owners are left uncertain if and where they can install the system and preservation commission members and staff lack the necessary guidance for making consistent rulings. Through the policies guiding the use of solar panels, communities can embrace practices that both promote renewable energy systems within North Carolina and support the protection of our state's historic resources. 

Solar Panels on Historic Buildings


With the adoption of financial incentives and the removal of regulatory impediments to the use of solar as a viable power source, solar energy systems are being installed on buildings in urban and rural communities throughout the United States, especially as solar technology improves and become more affordable.


A new report, Installing Solar Panels on Historic Buildings: A Survey of the Regulatory Environment, prepared by the North Carolina Solar Center and the National Trust for Historic Preservation, offers a pathway to better integration of solar energy systems onto historic resources in response to this growing trend. Click here to view the report. 

Architectural Toys from the Past


Do you have fond memories of an architectural-themed toy from your youth?  Click here for a walk down memory lane.

North Carolina State Historic Preservation Office
Division of Historical Resources | Office of Archives and History
North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources