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JUNE 1997

Blakeney House Purchase

The Historic Landmarks Commission is moving ahead with the purchase of the James A. Blakeney House on Blakeney Heath Road. This photograph proves that the house is endangered, which means it is time for the HLC to become involved.

New Tax Credits Approved!

The North Carolina General Assembly has just approved new tax credits for rehabilitating historic buildings.

  • State Income Tax Credit for income-producing buildings has been increased from 5% to 20%.
  • State Income Tax Credit for non-income producing buildings (your own home) has been created. It is 30%

To qualify:

  • The building must be listed in the National Register of Historic Places.
  • The National Park Service must approve the renovation.
  • For non-income producing properties, you must spend at least $25,000 within a 24-month period.
  • The rehabilitation certification must be applied for in advance of the rehabilitation.

For further information, contact the North Carolina Division of Archives and History at 919-733-6547. Please note: The National Park Service will have to approve rehabilitations of income-producing properties. The North Carolina Division of Archives and History will have to approve rehabilitations of non-incoming producing properties.

$500,000 Approved For Historic Landmarks Revolving Fund

The County Manager has recommended that $500,000 be added to the Historic Landmarks Commission's Revolving Fund. This would bring the Fund to a total of $1.5 million. All perservationists await final approval from the Board of County Commissioners. The best way save our endangered historic landmarks is to buy them, restore them, and sell them with protective covenants in the deed. Stay tuned for further word.

On June 17th the Board of County Commissioners approved an additional $500,000 for the HLC's Historic Preservation Revolving Fund. This brings the Fund total to approximately $1.5 million. The Historic Landmarks Commission will be developing a list of projects for consideration. Please let us know if you have suggestions of endangered historic sites that the HLC needs to purchase, restore, and sell with protective covenants in the deeds.

Davidson-MacDonald House Demolished By School System

Before and after pictures of the Davidson-MacDonald House.

The picture on the left was taken in March 1997, when efforts were underway to find a means to save the Davidson-MacDonald House. The picture on the right was taken in May 1997. The School System, despite the Historic Landmarks Commission's expression of interest in saving the house, tore down the Davidson-MacDonald House (built in the 1860's) because it felt that the house stood in the way of a new middle school. Nobody denies the need for more schools, especially in northern Mecklenburg County where growth is occurring at a rapid pace. But we must find ways to accommodate growth while preserving parts of our rural heritage. Otherwise Mecklenburg County will become totally overwhelmed by suburban sprawl. And that would be sad for students too, even the ones that go to the new middle school on Beatties Ford Road.

Restoration Plans for Patterson St. Houses

The Historic Preservation Foundation will be buying and restoring these two houses on Patterson St. They are part of the North Charlotte National Register Historic District. North Charlotte was one of this city's most important textile mill villages at the turn of the century. Clearly, the Historic Preservation Foundation is interested in all aspects of the local historic built environment -- not just the pretty homes of the famous and wealthy.


CMHPF Meeting Action

On June 9th the Historic Landmarks Commission and the Historic Preservation Foundation voted to take the following action:

  • To delay the issuance of the Certificate of Appropriateness to demolish the Parks Elevator Company building for 365 days.
  • To recommend the removal of the historic designation of the interior of the McClintock Rosenwald School on Erwin Road. Alterations completely destroyed the integrity of the interior.
  • To recommend the designation of the Welch-McIntosh House as an historic landmark.
  • To pursue the purchase of three houses on Patterson St. in the North Charlotte historic district. The Foundation will renovate the houses and offer them for sale with protective covenants in the deeds.
  • To secure professional help for uploading additional material on the Foundation's website.

  • Rural Preservation Task Force Authorized
  • Celebration of National Historic Preservation Week
  • Current Activities
  • Park Elevator Building Update
  • Permission To Buy And Restore James A. Blakeney House

    MAY 1997

    Rural Preservation Task Force Authorized

    On May 20th The Board of County Commissioners expanded the Rural Preservation Task Force to include the examination of sustainable development -- to work to assure that communities and neighborhoods remain viable for the long term. The County will make nominations in July and appoint members to the Task Force in August.

    The Task Force will have two major tasks. First, it will develop a definition of what is meant by "rural preservation." Are we talking about farmland preservation? Are we talking about the preservation of open space? Are we talking about the preservation of historic buildings? All of the above? None of the above? Second, it will examine opportunities for rural preservation. How many working farms remain in Mecklenburg County? Where are the most important historic landscapes, etc?

    This could be the beginning of a very significant initiative for our community. Anyone wishing to serve should contact the County Clerk as soon as possible.

    Permission To Buy And Restore James A. Blakeney House

    On May 20th the Board of County Commissioners authorized the Historic Landmarks Commission to buy the James A. Blakeney House on Blakeney Heath Road in South Mecklenburg. A magnificent early 20th Century farmhouse, the Blakeney House is in an advanced state of disrepair. That's whey we are involved. The Historic Landmarks Commission only undertakes preservation projects when the private sector does not step forward to save endangered historic sites. Stay tuned for details.

    Rural Preservation Task Force Authorized

    On April 15th the Board of County Commissioners voted to establish a Rural Preservation Task Force. The Task Force will develop a series of recommendations to encourage the preservation of rural cultural landscapes and places, including historic sites, in Mecklenburg County. The Historic Landmarks Commission will participate in this process. Hopefully, the HLC's Historic Preservation Revolving Fund will be strengthened. Stay tuned for future developments regarding this exciting and potentially momentous initiative.

    On May 20th The Board of County Commissioners expanded the Rural Preservation Task Force to include the examination of sustainable development -- to work to assure that communities and neighborhoods remain viable for the long term. The County will make nominations in July and appoint members to the Task Force in August.

    The Task Force will have two major tasks. First, it will development a definition of what is meant by "rural preservation." Are we talking about farmland preservation? Are we talking about the preservation of open space? Are we talking about the preservation of historic buildings? All of the above? None of the above? Second, it will examine opportunities for rural preservation. How many working farms remain in Mecklenburg County? Where are the most important historic landscapes, etc?

    This could be the beginning of a very significant initiative for our community. Anyone wishing to serve should contact the County Clerk as soon as possible.

    Celebration of National Historic Preservation Week

    The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Historic Preservation Foundation hosted two events to celebrate National Historic Preservation Week.

  • A Trolley Party. The Foundation will host a party at the Trolley Barn at 2104 South Boulevard beginning at 7PM on May 16th. There will be food, beer, and music by the rock band Bus Stop. Tickets are $25 per person in advance, $30 at the door. For information call 375-6145.
  • 2. On May 19th the Historic Preservation Foundation conducted a bus tour of historic sites in Charlotte-Mecklenburg. It was a grand event. Dan Morrill led the group to North Mecklenburg where they visited Rural Hill Plantation and learned about the pre-Civil War history of Mecklenburg County. Six generations of the Davidson family, including Dr. Chalmers Davidson, beloved professor at Davidson College for more than a half century, are buried in the Rural Hill Cemetery.

    The tour also visited North Charlotte, an historic textile mill village listed in the National Register of Historic Places. The bus meandered through Dilworth, Myers Park and Eastover. If you would like to arrange for a bus tour for your business, church or social organization, contact the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Historic Preservation Foundation at 375-6145.

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    Dr. Dan Morrill provides historical insights at the Rural Hill Cemetery

    Current Activites

    The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Historic Preservation Foundation is the non-profit affiliate of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Historic Landmarks Commission. Totally supported by private contributions, the Foundation seeks to preserve historic buildings, landscapes and sites in Charlotte and Mecklenburg County. It also provides educational information on the historic built environment of Charlotte-Mecklenburg. Its offices are located at 2100 Randolph Road, Charlotte, N.C. 28207. The telephone number is (704) 375-6145. The fax number is (704) 372-4584. The major projects of the Foundation to date have been:

  • The restoration of the Hand Pharmacy at 3201 North Davidson St.
  • The restoration of the North Charlotte Mill House at 500 Mercury Street.
  • The restoration of the North Charlotte Mill House at 3315 North Alexander Street
  • The restoration of the Welch-McIntosh House at 3305 Gibbon Road in the Derita Community.
  • The restoration of Streetcar 85, which is presently running between South End & Uptown Charlotte.
  • The restoration of the Davidson one-room schoolhouse at Rural Hill Plantation.

    The Foundation is currently seeking to acquire and restore three additional mill houses in the North Charlotte neighborhood.

    Owner Applies to Demolish Park Elevator Building

    The owner of the Park Elevator Company Building at 311 Arlington Avenue has applied to the Historic Landmarks Commission for permission to demolish the building. Located in the South End district and along the vintage trolley line, the Park Elevator Company Building was partially destroyed by fire in February of this year. Its remaining brick walls, however, are a compelling reminder of the New South era of Charlotte's industrial growth. The building was erected in the mid-1890's as part of Dilworth's industrial district and continued in use as a manufacturing plant until the early 1980's.

    The Historic Landmarks Commission has several options in dealing with this matter.

    Park Elevator Bldg

  • The Commission could delay the demolition for up to one year.
  • The Commission could recommend to City Council that it acquire the property through eminent domain.
  • The Commission could seek to purchase the property and offer it for sale with protective covenants in the deed.
  • The Commission could give the owner permission to move ahead with the demolition of the building.

    The Design Review Committee of the Historic Landmarks Commission has voted to recommend that the issuance of a Certificate of Appropriateness to demolish the Park Elevator Company Building at 311 Arlington Ave. in Dilworth be delayed for 365 days. This recommendation shall be considered by the Historic Landmarks Commission at its meeting on June 9th.

  • Foundation Seeks to Preserve Davidson-MacDonald House
  • David J. Craig House is Designated Historic Landmark
  • Foundation Restoring Welch-McIntosh House In Derita
  • Historic Landmarks Commission Restores and Sells Funderburk Buildings in Matthews

    APRIL 1997

    Historic Landmarks Commission Seeks To Preserve The Davidson-MacDonald House

    The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Historic Landmarks Commission has been asked by the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Public Schools to investigate the feasibility of preserving the Davidson-MacDonald House. Owned by CMS and located on Beatties Ford Road in the Hopewell community of north Mecklenburg, the house was built in the 1860's and enlarged in the early twentieth century. Until World War II it was the centerpiece of a large cotton farm. The house now stands atop a picturesque knoll at the front of a 67-acre tract on which an elementary school and a middle school will be erected.

    The Historic Landmarks Commission is most grateful to the Public Schools for being allowed to develop a preservation strategy for the Davidson-MacDonald House. The Commission believes that it is imperative that every reasonable effort be made to retain reminders of Mecklenburg County's rural heritage. The house, its outbuildings, and the overall setting of the farmstead are reminiscent of an era which is fast disappearing due to the unrelenting pressure of suburban development in the outer reaches of Mecklenburg County.

    The Historic Landmarks Commission is contemplating the possibility of using its historic preservation revolving fund to buy the house, renovate it, move it if absolutely necessary, and sell it to a private owner after placing protective covenants in the deed.



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