Colonel Alexander L. James House |
260 Cherokee Road
This magnificent Georgian Revival style home was completed in 1929 for Alexander L. James, a Major in the United States Army in World War I, and his wife Viola and was one of the first houses to appear in Eastover, a suburb that developer Edward Colville Griffith had opened two years earlier. It was featured in early advertisements for Eastover, in which the house was described as a "Georgian type" having the "charm and atmosphere of an ideal home."
The architect of the Alexander L. James House was Martin E. Boyer, Jr. (1893-1970). Born in Glen Wilton, Va., Boyer was reared in Charlotte and attended Carnegie-Mellon University in Pittsburgh, where he was trained in the Beaux Arts tradition. Scholars regard him as "the city's finest revivalist architect." During World War I, Boyer served as an architect for the U..S. Navy and in World War II was a lieutenant in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
A nephew of noted Charlotte architect J. M. McMichael, Boyer is principally remembered as the designer of stately Georgian Revival homes for the rich and famous in Charlotte and its environs. His other local masterpieces in this style include his own residence at 246 Fenton Place, and such imposing Myers Park homes as the J. Luther Snyder House (1901 Queens Rd.), and the Dr. J. Rush Shull House (1242 Queens Road West). In 1977, a home tour in honor of Boyer, sponsored by the Charlotte Garden Club, identified 25 Boyer-designed houses in Myers Park and Eastover. Boyer was also the architect for S. & W. Cafeterias, the William R. Davie Memorial in the Cemetery of the Old Waxhaw Presbyerian Church in Lancaster County, S. C., and superintended the rebuilding of the former U. S. Mint Building in Eastover in 1936.
Eastover was a rousing success. House construction began in 1928, and by 1932, 42 residences had been completed, including E. C. Griffith's own home at 201 Eastover Rd. Unlike nearby Myers Park with its Queens Rd., Eastover has no grand boulevard. That's because it was the first twentieth century Charlotte suburb designed exclusively for automobiles.