The Washington Park Historic District was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1992. Portions of the content on this web page were adapted from a copy of the original nomination document. [‡]
Located on steep lands at the crest of a ridge overlooking Salem Creek to the north, the Washington Park neighborhood was a planned speculative development centered around a streetcar line. (See: Streetcar Suburbs) Approximately one-half mile south of the early Moravian community of Salem and one and one-half miles south of the central business district of Winston-Salem, the neighborhood is about twenty-five blocks of irregular configuration with a grid pattern in the center, a diagonal street at its eastern boundary, and curvilinear landscaped streets to the northeast overlooking the seventy-five-acre Washington Park.
The Washington Park Historic District is a pleasant and refreshing neighborhood with a canopy of large trees providing shade. The trees and shrubs of individual house lots, streets of small well-designed houses and yards, avenues of spacious terraced lawns with their large showy houses, and the district's characteristic stone walls and steps together create a fluid and harmonious spot. The grid pattern of streets is laid out on hills, making a natural transition to the curvilinear streets overlooking the park and giving vistas of the city to the north from several points. Service alleys run through blocks behind houses; many still connect streets and are accessible by automobile.
Developed from the 1890s to World War II, it was one of Winston and Salem's two principal suburban residential areas in the early twentieth century and contains representative and well-detailed one- and two-story frame, brick and brick-veneered examples of Victorian (including simple vernacular examples), Queen Anne, Classical Revival, Shingle, Craftsman Bungalow, Colonial Revival, Moravian Revival, and Tudor Revival style houses. Also within the Washington Park Historic District are the 1916 (former) Schlatter Memorial Reformed Church, a few commercial buildings, and parts of Washington Park itself, dedicated in the plat of 1892. The Washington Park Historic District is heavily dominated by single-family residences, although many of these were built and continue as rental properties.
The Washington Park Historic District contains a total of 475 resources. It is predominantly residential in character, containing 338 primary buildings, of which 322 are houses, built for the most part in the 1910s and 1920s. Of the houses, 248 are contributing and 74 are noncontributing. Of the sixteen non-residential primary buildings, nine are noncontributing commercial buildings, three are contributing commercial buildings, one is a contributing church, and three are noncontributing church-related buildings. There are two contributing structures (swimming pool and stone gateway) and one contributing site (the park). There are 134 secondary buildings in the district, mainly garages, as well as one barn. Ninety-seven of these are contributing and thirty-seven are noncontributing. The majority of noncontributing buildings in the district were built after the Washington Park Historic District's period of significance.
The Washington Park neighborhood is distinguished from its surroundings on all sides. To the south are residential streets running south from Acadia Avenue and whose development continued after the period of significance. To the west and north is Washington Park itself. To the north is Bond Street whose remaining older buildings have been heavily altered, and beyond are commercial and industrial strips along S. Broad and S. Main streets and the Duke Power electrical station bordering Salem Creek. To the east the Washington Park Historic District is bounded by South Main Street and Sunnyside Avenue separating it from a distinct but contemporary planned streetcar suburb known as Sunnyside.
Initially consisting of a limited number of rural farmhouses on large tracts and uninhabited wooded land on the steep hills, the neighborhood was subdivided into smaller parcels, with multi-acre parcels assembled by the wealthy. The large majority of houses are oriented towards the east-west streets. Of the north-south streets, only South Main Street, South Broad Street, Doune Street and Hollyrood Street north of Acadia Avenue contain a sizeable number of residences; for the most part, the more substantial houses are found along the east-west streets which are called avenues. A canopy of mature trees shades the streets and is an important unifying element of the neighborhood. Many yards contain mature trees and other plantings.
The earliest buildings in the Washington Park Historic District date from the 1890s and are some of the largest. The Eller-Davis House, now at 14 Park Boulevard, may be the earliest extant building in the district. It was built at 129 Cascade Avenue by 1893 and moved to Park Boulevard ca.1918 when the owners wanted to build a new, more "up-to-date" house. It is a large frame Victorian house with shingle and sawn work. At 1820 S. Main Street, David S. Reid built his fine brick house with decorative Victorian and Queen Anne features. On a hill farther west in the district Christian Fogle built his large frame Queen Anne house (514 Banner Avenue). The center of a farm, it retains a one-and-one-half-story barn, smokehouse, and pavilion well cover. At 110 Banner Avenue is William Lassiter's more traditional frame house with interior chimneys, built by 1895.
Another early building in the Washington Park Historic District was built for the Banner family in the mid-nineteenth century. It was a brick farmhouse, the center of one of the large farms which previously blanketed this area, which is today incorporated into a much larger 1928-1929 house built in a major remodeling project (the Burton Craige House, 129 Cascade Avenue).
A handful of I-house derivatives built around the turn of the century remain in the Washington Park Historic District. These are the Lassiter House at 110 Banner Avenue, mentioned above, the Lindsay K. Gordon House at 100 Vintage Avenue, and the James A. Pickard House at 101 Gloria Avenue. All differ from true I-houses in having central chimneys. Most of these are on corners in the east central portion of the neighborhood.
Houses from the first decade of this century were built on Sunnyside Avenue and S. Main Street, and are dotted around the district on Gloria Avenue, Cascade Avenue, Banner Avenue and Hollyrood Street. About twenty remain. Close to a dozen of these are traditional vernacular buildings, generally one story and L-shape in plan, with ornamentation focused on porch posts and brackets, and often with scalloped shingles in the gable. Others, especially on Sunnyside Avenue, were more substantial.
The teens and 1920s were by far the most prolific years for construction of new houses in Washington Park. During this period, the large houses of prosperous businessmen were built on the first three blocks of Cascade Avenue. In addition to the grand houses of Cascade Avenue, on every street and every block in the Washington Park Historic District there are houses of this period, generally constituting the majority of buildings in each block. Rows of Bungalows are found especially in the western end of the district, an indication that for the most part development of the district extended from its core in the blocks of Cascade, Gloria and Banner just west of Sunnyside, moving west to the 200 and 300 blocks of those streets and others.
Most of these buildings are one-story Craftsman Bungalows of frame construction, often with shingle siding or weatherboarded with shingled gable ends. These typically are gable-front or cross-gabled buildings with false knee braces at gable ends and exposed rafter ends at the eaves. A variety of wood porch supports, most on brick piers, are used to individualize these houses. Asbestos siding covers many weatherboarded buildings in the Washington Park Historic District today, but has generally left shingled gables exposed.
The popularity of the Bungalow style was a result of widespread pattern books and popular magazines with a national distribution. Many of the Bungalows in Washington Park were made from nationally available plans; some companies offered completely pre-cut packages of lumber and detailing to be assembled by local labor. Even the smaller Bungalows built in the district are comfortable houses with porches and a "livable" flow to their floor plans.
A particularly fine example of a Bungalow, though not the typical frame Craftsman Bungalow echoed throughout the district, is the house at 225 Banner Avenue (William V. Poindexter House). It is notable for its unaltered shingled exterior with massive sloping brick posts continuing to ground level without a break at the porch floor. Decorative half-timbering ornaments its front gable.
Several Foursquare houses, which were popular nationally during the period from about 1900 to 1920, are also found in the neighborhood. A Foursquare has a simple square or rectangular plan, hipped roof, and symmetrical facade, and is generally two stories in height. One-story wings and porches are often added. The Gip I. Kimball House at 305 Cascade Avenue, is a characteristic hipped-roof Foursquare with weatherboarded first floor and shingled second floor. At the front is a full-front hipped-roof porch supported by square posts on shingled piers with a solid shingled porch balustrade.
Several houses in the Washington Park Historic District are a mix of Queen Anne and Colonial Revival massing and details, and many of the Bungalows have classical columns on their porches. Houses of all sizes have one- and two-story polygonal bays, many with bracketed cutaways at the roofline. There are also more straightforward Colonial Revival style houses. Luther Lashmit's 1928 remodeling of the mid-nineteenth century Banner farmhouse for Burton Craige created an elegant frame Colonial Revival style house with slate hipped roof and a one-story classical-columned porch at each side, one covered by a pergola (134 Cascade Avenue).
Despite the wealth of the prosperous businessmen who were building impressive houses on Cascade Avenue, there are only two Classical Revival houses in the neighborhood, the Henry E. Fries House at 104 Cascade Avenue and the Cicero Francis Lowe House at 204 Cascade Avenue. The Lowe House, listed individually on the National Register, is a large hipped-roof frame dwelling dominated by a one-story wrap porch supported by fluted Ionic columns. The entrance bay has a second pedimented tier and is convex at the first story. Gable dormer windows have arched sash and cornice returns, and the porch and main roofline cornices are modillioned. At the central entrance is a fanlight and leaded glass sidelights, and a classical surround at the front door. The house is built on one of the highest elevations in Winston-Salem, at the intersection of Broad Street and Cascade Avenue.
There are over a dozen Tudor Revival style houses in Washington Park. A few are large houses with Stick style false half-timbering (e.g. Frederic Fries Bahnson's house at 28 Cascade Avenue built in 1914), but most are modest houses built in the late 1930s and throughout the 1940s, side-gabled with a steep front gable and often a prominent front chimney. Indeed the use of a conspicuous front chimney carries over into 1950s houses which have no other Tudor details.
Fewer houses were built in Washington Park in the 1930s due to the Depression. About a dozen 1930s houses are here, continuing the popular styles of the 1920s and emphasizing those in the Tudor Revival style. Building permit applications from that time concentrated on reroofing, repairs and construction of garages. A similar number of houses were built in the 1940s, the majority modest houses with little or no ornamentation. For the most part these 1940s houses are not compatible to the district in their size, shape, or massing; generally they are "box-like" side-gabled frame houses with only a stoop or small entrance porch, out-of-scale even with the small houses of earlier date.
The 1950s saw an increase in the number of houses built in the district for several reasons. First, the post-war recovery and stimulation of the economy encouraged such construction. More important, however, were large parcels of land that became available in Washington Park in the late 1940s and early 1950s. On Cascade and Banner avenues, the Gilmer estate (centered at 605 Cascade Avenue) and the Fred Fogle estate (centered at 514 Banner Avenue) sold off subdivided parcels. These were bought by developers who built small speculative houses on land that had remained open pasture, meadows, orchards and lawns through so many decades of the neighborhood's prime development. Thus some of the Washington Park Historic District's largest and most prominent houses are today surrounded by smaller houses of the early 1950s.
These later houses are different in another way: the 1910s and 1920s were the peak of the boom years in Winston-Salem. Many Washington Park residents were wealthy, and the less wealthy had found stable jobs and saw bountiful futures. The houses of all classes reflect this optimism. Even the smaller houses are well-proportioned and ornamented. We see quite the contrary with houses built here in the 1940s and 1950s. By the time these parcels opened up, Washington Park, like West End (see West End Historic District, was no longer the fashionable neighborhood it had been. Buena Vista and the Country Club area and other suburban neighborhoods now held that rank. The houses built here in the 1940s and 1950s were modest and less stylish than those of earlier decades, and targeted for lower wage-earners.
There was little construction in Washington Park in the 1960s and 1970s. Perhaps six houses were built and a few commercial buildings on Acadia Avenue. Although the neighborhood has always been maintained and most of the large houses built for the city's first millionaires have remained well cared for single-family houses, the neighborhood today is re-emerging. Its significance as a cohesive district of historic architecture is recognized and it is attracting younger residents. In the 1980s seven houses were constructed in the district, with at least half of these designed to be compatible with their surrounding buildings.
It is mostly garages which make up the large and varied collection of outbuildings in the Washington Park Historic District. The earlier outbuildings included barns, woodsheds and smokehouses. These were replaced and supplanted by twentieth century frame garages as well as servants quarters behind some of the larger houses on Cascade Avenue. A number of garages were in place by 1917 when the first Sanborn map to cover this area was drawn. By the 1930s, garages are shown throughout the district. The typical example is a small, gable-front frame building covered with weatherboards.
Other early storage sheds also survive across the Washington Park Historic District. Several substantial outbuildings were built behind the Cascade Avenue mansions for use as servants quarters and carriage houses. Henry Fries kept his electric car in a large outbuilding behind his house at 104 Cascade Avenue (now with its own address at 105 Banner Avenue). The Christian H. Fogle property at 514 Banner Avenue is the only one to retain its barn.
Although their dates of construction are difficult to determine, many garages and storage sheds that use traditional forms and materials are presumed to be contemporary or close to the dates of their houses. Many houses, even those of modest proportions, have porte-cocheres and a few, such as the Gilmer House at 605 Cascade Avenue, have a built-in garage beneath the house.
Non-residential buildings in the Washington Park Historic District include commercial buildings and three churches. Only one of the churches, Schlatter Memorial Reformed Church built on the corner of Banner and Hollyrood from 1915 to 1920, is contributing. It is a Gothic Revival style brick building, gable-roofed with crenelated parapets and entrance tower and Gothic-arched stained glass windows. The other two churches were built in 1955 and 1957 and are not contributing. They are, respectively, the small unadorned brick Primitive Baptist Church at 423 Acadia Avenue, and Our Lady of Mercy Church on the corner of Sunnyside and Cascade avenues.
The neighborhood's commercial buildings are concentrated along Acadia Avenue near the intersections of S. Broad, S. Main and Hollyrood streets. They include buildings housing drug, hardware companies, specialty retail establishments, and automobile body shops. Several historic commercial buildings remain though most are noncontributing due to alterations. Only two remain intact on Acadia Avenue: the 1929 Swaim's Fair Price Food Store, a brick-veneered corner grocery store at 232 Acadia Avenue; and Renigar's Hardware at 317 Acadia Avenue. Other commercial buildings in the district are noncontributing due to their post World-War II construction.
At the northwest end of the district is Washington Park itself which today covers 75 acres with woods, trails, two 1930s picnic pavilions and a metal 1966 pavilion, basketball courts, three ball diamonds and a playground. There is also a jogging course with exercise stations, and the Salem Creek Greenway, a paved path along Salem Creek. Paved and unpaved paths are found throughout the park. In 1892, seventeen acres were designated as a park by the Winston-Salem Land and Investment Co., who developed the neighborhood. In July of 1955, the city bought an additional 47 acres from the Moravian Church and has subsequently added other parcels to the park. The Washington Park Historic District encompasses the V-shaped park area shown in the 1890s plat and additional associated lands which together include the ridges and portions of the floodplain of Salem Creek above the 750-foot elevation. This boundary excludes a large transmission line near the creek. The main entrance to the park is identified by an arched gateway at the foot of Gloria Avenue. There, stone piers support a metal arch with the name "Washington Park." A badly eroded marble plaque in the pier states "Erected by Old North State Chap. DAR, Feb. 22, 1928."
Although the Washington Park Historic District has a fair number of noncontributing buildings, most are relatively unobtrusive; only a few may be classified as intrusions. The principal noncontributing buildings are the yellow brick Our Lady of Mercy Church, built in 1957 at the southwest corner of Sunnyside and Cascade avenues.
The church has built another large unsympathetic structure on E. Banner Avenue which turns inward to the church complex rather than follow the pattern of streetside entrances. Over the years renovations have altered numerous dwellings, especially on Rawson Street and Violet Street and Konnoak View Drive, as cast metal "wrought iron" posts replaced original wood porch supports and asbestos, aluminum and vinyl sidings have been applied. Most of these altered houses, however, retain sufficient integrity to continue to evoke their historic character. Approximately nineteen Washington Park houses are noncontributing due to unsympathetic alterations.
In 1791 George Washington visited Salem, travelling north from Salisbury, through what would become over a century later a planned suburb and a dedicated green space aptly named Washington Park. Designed by Jacob Lott Ludlow in 1891 and developed largely after 1900, the neighborhood known today as Washington Park is one of North Carolina's finest examples of an early twentieth century streetcar suburb. Once a hilly hunting ground for the Moravian settlers of Salem, Washington Park is now a quiet, tree-shaded neighborhood with broad lawns and a wide variety of architectural styles from the early twentieth century. It is significant in the history of Winston-Salem as one of the early residential suburbs developed as a result of the streetcar, reflecting the city's development from a small business center to one of the leading manufacturing centers of the South, and contains the residences of many of Winston and Salem's most prominent leaders of the period. The district further represents the city's increasingly urban character and the growing numbers of individuals in middle and upper income brackets and as such is a symbol of the affluence of the boom times Winston-Salem enjoyed in the early decades of the twentieth century. In the 1920s Winston-Salem became the largest city between Atlanta and Washington; the increasing sophistication and prosperity of Winston-Salem's residents continued throughout Washington Park's period of significance and until the 1960s. Tile neighborhood retains to an extraordinary degree its original layout, a high proportion of intact buildings erected during the period of significance, important early landscape features, and the particular elements identifying Washington Park as a residential neighborhood of the early twentieth century, including spatial arrangements, building materials, and special unifying features such as stone walls and steps. Within the district is a distinguished collection of residences constructed between the 1890s and World War II, with representative examples of both vernacular and stylish Victorian, Queen Anne, Shingle, Neoclassical Revival, Craftsman Bungalow, Colonial Revival, Moravian Revival and Tudor Revival style domestic architecture. These buildings are united historically and aesthetically by plan and physical development to convey a visual sense of the overall historic environment. The large buildings in the first three blocks of Cascade Avenue serve as focal points for the majority of the buildings that create the district's historic character as a unified entity. The very small percentage of houses known to have been moved within the Washington Park Historic District were constructed in the district and moved during the district's period of significance. The Washington Park Historic District also contains buildings which do not contribute to the significance of the district; however, these do not significantly affect the district's integrity as they are small in number and unobtrusive.
The Washington Park Historic District is eligible for listing on the National Register of Historic Places for its significance in the growth and development of the "Twin City" of Winston-Salem from the last years of the nineteenth century to the start of World War II. The district is also eligible for listing in the area of architecture as a planned suburb that contains well-preserved examples of a number of pre-World War II architectural styles.
Historical Background and Community Development Context
In 1870 Winston was still a small town with a village atmosphere, having been established less than twenty years earlier in 1851. Immediately south was the Moravian town of Salem, a planned community which dates to 1766. Winston's population was 473, but just ten years later its population multiplied to 2,854 and then almost quadrupled by 1890. This growth was the result of the coming of the railroad and the optimism of energetic entrepreneurs who built factories and warehouses. R.J. Reynolds left his father's tobacco company in Virginia to come to Winston-Salem in 1873 because he had learned of Winston's railroad connection (made in 1873) and of its brand new tobacco sales warehouse, built in 1872. Reynolds and others like him built their factories and thus contributed to the rapid transformation of the small country town to an industrial leader. Reynolds first built a small factory and quickly needed another. It was Pleasant H. Hanes who built the first large tobacco factory in 1873. These had a snowballing effect. Seven years later in 1880 Winston had eleven tobacco factories; by 1888 it had twenty-six. By 1894 a tobacco directory listed thirty-seven tobacco manufacturers in Winston alone. Winston was also developing other industries: foundries, textiles, tobacco and furniture were the core of its success.
Many businesses and individuals benefitted from the boom. The heavy demand for workers created in turn an equal demand for housing and for services for the expanding population. Perhaps the most direct beneficiaries were the construction companies who built the warehouses, offices, houses and shops. Two families of brothers started building companies which were later said to have "built practically single-handedly the entire towns of Winston and Salem." In 1871 Charles A Fogle and his brother Christian H. Fogle joined in operation of a wood-dressing plant which expanded immediately; they also operated as building contractors. The Miller Brothers Company was begun by John S. and Gideon L. Miller in 1872. Successful for two decades, the firm turned to furniture manufacture after the Panic of 1893. This left Fogle Bros. Co. to carry on as the builders of Winston and Salem.
Winston's boom gained speed in the 1880s. The burgeoning tobacco and textile industries spawned numerous new residential areas. The Twin City's first suburb, West End, was developed in the 1890s and became home to prominent families. Washington Park was planned at the same time and developed slightly later. Ardmore, named for the Philadelphia suburb, was begun in 1914. Records show a new house begun every week for twenty-two years. As the automobile became more prevalent, the neighborhood of West Highlands developed west of West End. Just as in West End and Washington Park, lavish houses for prosperous businessmen were built along West Highland's central street, Stratford Road. It was also during this period that Winston and Salem, which had in a practical sense merged in the preceding decades, formally consolidated in 1913. Some time after that the city limits were expanded to encompass its growing suburban neighborhoods, among them Washington Park.
One of the most fashionable of the residential areas to emerge in the early decades of Winston's boom period, Washington Park was a planned development. It is situated on rolling farmland and on lands previously used by the Moravians as hunting grounds because it was thought too steep for development. The plan for its development was designed by Jacob Lott Ludlow who also drew the West End plat.
Ludlow's plat was officially recorded in the Register's office in March of 1892. However, the "Bird's Eye View" of 1891 shows the streets of Washington Park in the upper right corner, indicating that at least the street plan had been drawn by that time. Inclusion in the Bird's Eye View did not mean that the streets were actually on the ground; that map also shows the Zinzendorf Hotel prominently in the foreground, though the hotel was not completed until May of 1892.
It is generally accepted that the streets of Washington Park were laid out by 1895 when they are shown in the index map to the Sanborn Insurance Maps. Furthermore, two photographs taken in 1894 show David Reid's house at 1820 S. Main Street, completed and lived in, and the streetcar tracks wrapping the house at the corner of Main Street and Cascade Avenue.
Ludlow came to Winston-Salem from his native New Jersey in 1886 and started a general civil engineering practice in municipal, sanitary and hydraulic problems; he helped design water supply and sewerage systems throughout the South. From 1889 to 1892 he served as Winston's first city engineer, and it is believed he was instrumental in initiating a sewerage system and street-paving program. Ludlow received his Masters degree in civil engineering from Fayette College in Pennsylvania in 1890 while working for the city. In that same year he was asked to draw the plan for the West End suburb, and concurrently or shortly thereafter, drew the plan for Washington Park and, immediately east, Sunnyside. The West End plan more closely adheres to the teachings of Frederick Law Olmsted, with a large hotel on a hill and residential lots along curvilinear streets, interspersed with small parks. The curvilinear pattern used there was a major departure from the grid patterns of Winston and Salem.
Ludlow's plan for Washington Park, although believed to have been designed after his plan for West End, contained the more customary grid pattern in the center moving west into curvilinear streets which heeded the topography of the ridge overlooking the floodplain of Salem Creek.
Ludlow's plat gave no name to the area. It was titled "Plat of the property of the Winston-Salem Land and Investment Company (WSL&I) situated at Winston-Salem, NC, as developed by J.L. Ludlow C.E., Winston, NC." It is generally accepted that Washington Park was named in honor of George Washington, who passed through the area on his way to Salem on May 31, 1791. His route from the south brought him on Old Lexington Road, today's Rawson Street. However, it is not known when the park received that name. Most believe the park itself has always been called Washington Park, but Ludlow's plan shows the name "Sunny Side Park" in the ravine. Fries notes in her history of the county that the name Sunnyside was derived from a plantation owned by E.A. Vogler. In 1928 the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) presented the stone gateway at the foot of Gloria Avenue with the name Washington Park in an iron arch above. The ceremony extolled the virtues of George Washington; however, newspaper accounts do not give any indication whether this was a new or continuing name for the park.
The neighborhood and others nearby were as a group called simply Southside for many years, apparently from its earliest development. City directories use "Southside" or "'S'Side" to identify the location of streets in Washington Park, Sunnyside, and elsewhere in the city's southern sector. The Sanborn Map Company's index maps of 1895 and 1900 provide no name for the neighborhood, but show the area with "Winston-Salem Land & Inv. Co." written across it. In 1911 the Winston-Salem Journal reported that it had arranged for "better suburban carrier delivery" and had appointed "Master Joe Inmon of Arcadia [sic] Avenue, Southside," as district agent for the Journal on the Southside. Real estate auctions in 1911 also advertised the area as Southside. Interviews indicate that "Washington Park" has long been the name of the streets in the district's core; that name became more prevalent about 20 years ago when younger residents began to move into the neighborhood. Some older people in the neighborhood still call it Southside, though others knew it as "Washington Park" when they were children.
As indicated above, the ravine around which Ludlow planned the aptly named Park Boulevard was identified as Sunny Side Park. Presumably, the irregular V-shaped park boundary reflected the land owned by WSL&I rather than a deliberate park design. When the plat was recorded, this 17-acre parcel was dedicated as a park and remains today under city control. The plat shows numbered blocks and lots; all blocks had one or more alleys providing access to the backs of properties. Many alleys remain today; several still connect streets.
Just as in the West End neighborhood, the development of Washington Park followed Ludlow's plat with remarkable loyalty. The plat is almost identical to the layout of the streets today, with minor exceptions. In the plat the only link with the city to the north was Main Street. Broad Street (named Boswoth, also Bosworth, on the plat and on Sanborn maps and early city directories; referred to as Broad in this discussion) ended above Bond Street (named Middallhaff on the plat). Today Broad Street continues to the north and Bond Street is a dead end; on Ludlow's plat Bond Street made a ninety degree turn to meet Park Boulevard at its northern apex. Eastern extensions of Bond Street and Shawnee Street are drawn on the plat in dotted lines; they apparently were outside the irregular boundary of WSL&I's property. The extensions were never built.
The area south of Banner roughly between Main and Broad was not owned by WSL&I; therefore it is not drawn on the plat. Broad and Acadia are only dotted lines in this area, and Doune and Rawson streets are not shown at all south of Banner, although they are on contemporary Sanborn maps and contain some of the earlier buildings in the district. The southernmost street on the plat is Acadia Avenue; lots are drawn on the north side only with the exception of the area from Main to Sunnyside. Nevertheless, both sides of Acadia Avenue developed concurrently. WSL&I's holdings also included a block-wide stretch of land which plunged to the south. Here, Ludlow drew an extension of Hollyrood Street leading to a curvilinear circular road named Brookside Drive, perhaps around a body of water. This portion of the plat is not subdivided into lots, nor are the blocks numbered.
A comparison of Ludlow's plat with the map on the title page to the 1895 Sanborn Maps shows few differences, one being the continuation of Broad Street beyond Banner Avenue to Acadia Avenue, and the continuation of Donne (today's Rawson Street) three blocks south of Acadia. Little had changed in the title pages of 1900, 1907 and 1912. By 1912 Wachovia Creek had been renamed Salem Creek. By 1917 the neighborhood was sufficiently developed to warrant inclusion of parts of eighteen blocks in detailed enlargements showing the residential development which had taken place in the area.
This area was bounded roughly by Main Street, Vintage Avenue, Hollyrood Street and the block south of Acadia Avenue, and does not reflect the "gaps" in Ludlow's plat.
The areas described above correspond generally to the neighborhood known today as Washington Park. Also on Ludlow's plat, extending southeast from Sunnyside Avenue, is a separate neighborhood following a strict rectangular grid pattern with "Sunny Side Avenue" cutting a diagonal swath through the grid. The plat shows the streetcar line coming down Main Street, turning west on Cascade Avenue as far as the park, and east one block on Cascade to Sunny Side Avenue and then to Sprague Street. On Sunny Side Avenue and in parts of the Sunnyside neighborhood lots were small, enabling purchasers to determine the lot sizes they would establish. This area developed concurrently with the Washington Park neighborhood, but from its inception on paper, through its development and continuing until the present time, it has been a distinct neighborhood known as Sunnyside. Although the plat showed the park's name as Sunnyside, that name became associated with the southeastern neighborhood, not with the neighborhood known today as Washington Park.
Nothing on Ludlow's plat identifies Cascade Avenue as the choice street in the suburb; its lot sizes and layout are similar to those of other streets. The only difference is the checkered line labeled "Winston-Salem Electric Railway." The streetcar was essential to the development of the Washington Park neighborhood and others. It is no coincidence that the streetcar system was established only months before major development companies incorporated.
In mid-July of 1890 Winston-Salem's streetcar, said to be the second in the nation, began to run regularly. "Excursionists" from Raleigh and Greensboro were given free rides on July 15 and 16, and the Union Republican gave an optimistic report:
"It is certainly a great step forward, an enterprise that involved a large outlay, which signifies the confidence foreign capitalists have in our present and future welfare, and we believe that the investment will never be a cause for regret. Onward is the watchword in the Twin Cities...To the citizens in town and in country we would say that the five handsome new streetcars and two flats which will soon be operated on schedule time, the lights, the building and machinery that operates the whole, is a sight worth witnessing. It will cost nothing to look at and but a nickel to ride."
In January 1891 the Electric Company and the Street Railway Company were consolidated under the name of Winston-Salem Railway and Electric Company, and on March 11, 1899, the Winston-Salem Street Railway Company was incorporated.
The streetcar system was purchased from Henry Fries in 1913 by Southern Public Utilities Company (SPU), which was later acquired by Duke Power Company. SPU operated the system under a 100-year franchise agreement which Fries had worked out with the City of Winston.
The streetcars were painted yellow; there were summer and winter cars. Summer cars were open on both sides with seats that spanned the cars. The winter cars had a different seating arrangement with closed sides and a central aisle. Long seats at each end housed an electric heater as well as a sand box with a mechanism to release sand on the icy tracks when needed. (Boys in the neighborhood would soap the tracks at the top of Main Street which caused the conductor to use a foot control to drop sand onto the tracks.)
Early cars were staffed by two persons, a conductor and a motorman. Cars were constructed symmetrically; they had no back nor front as they did not turn around at the end of the line. The motorman used a pole to transfer the wire, rope and pulley assembly to the opposite overhead wire to reverse direction. The conductor collected fares and punched passes and transfer tickets. He recorded this on a register in the front and balanced at the end of his shift. A conductor earned about $30.00 per week. In 1921 passenger fare was seven cents one way, or four rides for twenty-five cents. At that time R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company was starting factory workers at twenty-five cents an hour.
The streetcar lines ran south on Main Street to Cascade Avenue, where a branch turned to the west on Cascade Avenue and traveled all the way to the park. (The line also continued on Main Street to Sprague Street and through the adjoining Sunnyside neighborhood to Nissen Park, since destroyed). As development continued past the end of a line, bus service was added to bring passengers to the streetcar lines for a transfer. The streetcar was the major means of transportation; hence property along or near the line was more expensive and fashionable. Although a few wealthy individuals had cars earlier, the automobile did not appear in any sizeable number until around 1915. There were street lights all along the streetcar lines; in the Washington Park neighborhood and other areas outside the city limits, the lights were turned off at night by the last car at about 10:30 p.m. and turned on again by the first car out about 5:30 a.m. This did not affect electricity serving houses. The streetcars stopped operating on December 29, 1936.
On October 16, 1890, just three months after the opening of the streetcars, the Winston-Salem Land & Investment Co. was incorporated. Among the fourteen "corporators" were Henry Fries, AH. Eller and Henry Bahnson. Of the fourteen, five were from New Bern, four from Winston, three from Salem, and one each from Goldsboro and High Point. The amount of the capital stock "was given as $250,000 divided into two thousand and five hundred shares at $100 each." Two and one-half weeks later, on November 3, 1890, the Winston Development Company's incorporation is the next listing in the deed book. Twenty-two "corporators" are listed with the number of shares taken by each. Their home cities are not listed. Only H.J. Bahnson is listed as a corporator for both companies. The amount of capital stock was $100,000 divided into "1,000 shares at $100 each."
These companies were followed by others which invested in the Washington Park neighborhood. The Inside Land Co. incorporated in 1894, followed by the Inside Land and Improvement Co. (1904), Southside Land and Investment Company (1901), and the Winston Investment Company (1909). Individuals were also actively engaged in real estate during these years of rapid expansion. The Fogle family alone has twenty pages in the Grantor Index from 1849 to 1927, with each line representing a transaction. The Fogies sold a number of parcels in the 1890s; some of the purchasers include Southside Land & Investment Co., WSL&I, Inside Land Co., Winston Development Co., and individuals. As late as 1925 there was a Banner Investment Co.
In Southside, land could change hands several times before being developed. Several recorded plats illustrate this trend. A plat dated July 1911 shows the "property of Foltz and Spaugh" to include all the land from Salisbury Road in the western part of the neighborhood up past Acadia, Banner and Cascade avenues to the park, with lot divisions matching Ludlow's. The area was included in Ludlow's survey for WSL&I but much of it is not in the boundaries of the Washington Park Historic District because the majority of buildings were built after World War II.
A plat dated March, 1915, shows the "property of C.R. Fleming" to include the west side of Park Boulevard north of Vintage Avenue, with "Miller" written across several large lots, reflecting William Miller's ownership of 42 Park Boulevard and parcels to the north.
In May, 1911, the Atlantic Coast Realty Company of Washington, N.C., conducted its third auction sale of lots in the neighborhood. The company advertised a free barbecue dinner for all who attended and free streetcar tickets. The company had held a similar earlier sale and "it is understood that many who purchased then have realized good profit on their investment." Advertisements pitched "50 desirable residence lots on Southside; fifteen of these lots front on Main Street, on the car line." The sale was held near John L. Gilmer's large Victorian house on the hill at the west end of Cascade Avenue, overlooking the park (today's 605 Cascade Avenue, which is now the site of Gilmer's 1929 brick house which replaced the earlier house after it was destroyed by fire). According to the advertisement for the sale, "It's Winston-Salem's 'Superb Suburb' — It's growing more rapidly than any other part of the city."
After the first day of the sale the newspaper reported "A great success was the land sale on Southside yesterday conducted by the Atlantic Coast Realty Company. Lots aggregating a value of more than $9,000 were sold..." Two days later the Atlantic Coast Realty Company conducted another sale, this one of "valuable lots for the colored people on the Belo property at the North end of Trade street," demonstrating the strength and diversity of the development and housing industry in Winston and Salem at the time.
By 1919 a new subdivision was planned immediately south of the land first platted by Ludlow for WSL&I. The area was subdivided by Atlantic Coast Realty which had held the land auctions in 1911. This time the company is listed as "of Petersburg, Va., and Greenville, NC." A 1919 plat shows the "Holton and Fisher Subdivision, located in South Side suburb of Winston-Salem," and consisted of the property of heirs of Jno. Q. Holton and the property of A E. Holton. The plat encompasses land south of Acadia between Boswoth (today's Broad Street) and Konnoak View Drive, and includes Violet Street and Konnoak (originally Holton Street), though neither is named on the plat.
At the western and northern boundaries of the neighborhood is Washington Park itself, an area of contrast in its steep hills, some wooded, falling to the flat open floodplains of Salem Creek. Seventeen acres of the park was dedicated by map in March, 1892, when WSL&I registered its subdivision plat. In 1955 the city purchased approximately forty-seven acres from the Moravian Church. Since then, additional land has been acquired to enlarge the park. The park today encompasses seventy-five acres of land and stretches to the west to an adjoining but unrelated neighborhood. It remains under city ownership. The city's community-wide recreation services began in 1918 when the city appropriated $6,000 for citywide park and playground services and authorized opening five playgrounds. The city provided a park superintendent, Oscar Tesh, who lived on the north side of Bond Street at the park's edge in a city-owned house.
The park has always been heavily used. Many older residents of the neighborhood remember the man-made lake in the center of the park which was used for ice skating in the winter. The lake was fed by a spring through a gorge which apparently was covered by houses built on Banner Avenue in the 1950s. Some remember a bakery in the park, and all remember Sunday School picnics and band concerts held on a flat stage, and profuse flowers.
In 1928 the DAR presented a stone bench and a stone gate with iron arch reading "Washington Park," which still stands as an entrance to the park at the foot of Gloria Avenue. The newspaper stated that "impressive ceremonies marked the unveiling and presentation by the Old North State Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution of a stone gateway and stone bench in Washington Park...in memory of George Washington." It continues,
"Included in the program was the presentation by the Alexander Martin Chapter of the C.A.R. [Children of the American Revolution] of bird baths and bird houses...Music was furnished by the R.J. Reynolds High School Band...Rev. Douglas Rights exhibited a large number of Indian relics and arrowheads which he said had been found within one and one-half miles of the park and spoke briefly in regard to them. They will be turned over to the Wachovia Historical Society. Henry R. Dwire accepted the gateway and bench presented by the Old North State chapter.
At the close of the exercises, the Old North State chapter, through courtesy of the Bobbitt Drug Company, Welfare Drug Company and Arcadia Drug Company, Southside, served ice cream and refreshments."
A fire in the 1930s burned a rock and concrete pavilion; its cedar posts and framing for the top were rebuilt. A ball field was built in the early 1960s and the park was lighted in 1965. A paved basketball court was added in 1966. Another ball field and bathrooms were built more recently. A fitness trail circles the perimeter of the park and the city's greenway follows Salem Creek through the park.
The park was always wooded, heavily in parts, until May of 1989 when a tornado inflicted tremendous damage, destroying hundreds of large trees. The park's barren hills today are in sharp contrast to over a century of forested hillsides. The Washington Park Neighborhood Association is raising funds to help replace trees in the park.
Washington Park's Residents
The developers of Washington Park were among the countless entrepreneurs who became wealthy during this period. Much of the wealth garnered by the city's successful industrialists was poured into large and grand houses. Indeed Winston-Salem has had three areas known as Millionaire's Row. The first was on Fifth Street in Winston, in the 1880s and 1890s. The second was in West End, Winston's first streetcar suburb whose development immediately preceded Washington Park's. Ultimately the title passed in the 1910s and 1920s to Cascade Avenue, a residential boulevard lined with elegant houses of several prominent industrialists running through the center of Washington Park.
In most of the Washington Park Historic District, houses are in gridded blocks on rolling land; to the northeast they are on curvilinear Park Boulevard which follows the ridge overlooking the Washington Park. On the south side of Cascade the large parcels which continue through the block to Banner Avenue contain some of the city's largest and most architecturally developed pre-World War II houses. Throughout the neighborhood but concentrated on Cascade Avenue, buyers would purchase several lots, determining individually what size their parcel would be. Houses built on the first three blocks of Cascade had much larger lots (and larger houses) than elsewhere in the district. The economic difference between those on Cascade Avenue and the rest of neighborhood did create some social segregation but was accepted, not with pain but as a fact of life.
Among the wealthy residents of Washington Park were Henry E. Fries (104 Cascade Avenue), head of the gas company, president of the Winston-Salem Southbound Railway and mayor of Salem. In 1884 he was the moving spirit behind the NC Industrial Exposition in Raleigh, and in 1885 he organized and served as president of Southside Cotton Mills. He was a member of the three-man committee that helped plan the NC College of Agriculture and Mechanic Arts (now NCSU) and for 53 years was a trustee of what is now Winston-Salem State University. At his death it was said he had done "more than any man in our city — probably in our state — to promote harmony between the races."
The Winston-Salem Journal of January 3, 1911, reported that Burton Craige of Salisbury had been appointed counsel for the R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company. The paper stated that "in the profession he is looked upon as one of the leading lawyers in the state...Mr. Craige considers Winston-Salem the best city in the state, and this he says was the chief inducement that determined him in making this his home for the future." Craige lived at 134 Cascade Avenue.
Many prominent families moved to Washington Park from Salem, central Winston, and the West End neighborhood. Living on Cascade Avenue was Frederic Fries Bahnson, one of the founders of the Normalair Company which produced a centrifugal humidifier, and a number of prominent businessmen and attorneys. Dominating a hill at the west end of Banner Avenue is the house built at 514 Banner Avenue in 1986-1989 for Christian Fogle as a small cattle farm. Barbed wire still fenced the land when it was sold for development in the 1950s. Fogle with his brother had founded Fogle Brothers Lumber Co., which built many of the buildings spawned by Winston-Salem's real estate boom. Christian Fogle died before moving into his large new house; nevertheless the Fogies had a tremendous involvement in the neighborhood, building many of its houses. Other contractors have been identified through the numerous interviews conducted in researching the district and through building permit records. Indeed several builders lived in Washington Park and developed lots there, including Stamey C. Ripple, who was not only a contractor but also had a real estate agency and owned a number of houses in the neighborhood. Others were L.C. Kimel and M.C. Hodgins, who was a contractor for quite a few houses in the neighborhood. William F. Miller, vice-president of Fogle Bros. Lumber Co., built speculative houses near his own on Park Boulevard, some with his architect son. From the records it is clear that several real estate companies operating in Washington Park had their own contracting firms.
The neighborhood is well-known for the prominent industrialists and lawyers who lived on Cascade Avenue and whose influence affected not only the city but the region, but it is the entirety of the neighborhood which gives it its significance. Washington Park as a neighborhood was made up of the many blocks of dwelling houses of professionals and tradesmen who benefited abundantly from the growth of the Twin City. A newspaper report of 1911 expressed delight at the news of Winston-Salem's population increase. The lead headline in the Winston-Salem Journal on January 5, 1911, was "Winston-Salem with 22,700 Ranks 3rd in North Carolina," with subheads, "Goes Ahead of Asheville, While Asheville Drops Behind the Capital City; Wonderful Increase in all Lines; Twin-City Has Shown Remarkable Increase Along Industrial Lines — Increase Was 9,050, or 67 Per Cent." The article reports that since 1900 the city showed an average increase of nearly 1,000 per year, and that "Within the last year every man in the city has been brought to the realization of the strategical position of the city, and the value as a feeder to a large area of surrounding country, and by stretching out into other fields for manufacturies to locate here, which is the daily work of the Board of Trade, the ultimate development of Winston-Salem as a manufacturing and jobbing center cannot be too greatly emphasized. To give an idea of the diversity of the manufactured product emanating from this city may be mentioned knit goods, furniture, cotton and woolen goods, wagons and carts, iron and wood working machinery, fertilizer, building material, flour, meal and bread, shoes, candies, clothing and drugs the output of these alone exceeding eight million dollars."
The roster of products is indicative of the prosperity of the time, and those only in manufacturing. With the jobs came people and with the people came the need for services and even more numerous employment opportunities. Washington Park was home to a prosperous and growing middle class. Living in the neighborhood were clerks, bookkeepers, machinists, traveling salesmen, factory workers, woodworkers, teachers and others. One street over from the mansions of Cascade Avenue lived dozens of less illustrious families: R.J. Linville, a chauffeur for Camel City Coach Co., lived at 29 Gloria Avenue; James A Pickard, a postal carrier and insurance agent, lived at 101 Gloria Avenue; William A. Kaltreider, assistant pastor of Home Moravian Church and a missionary, lived at 106 Gloria Avenue, and William R. Hudspeth, one of several foremen at R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., lived at 329 Gloria Avenue.
Residents moved to the neighborhood from elsewhere in the city, from the county, and "from off." W.H. Smith's first trip to Winston was in 1906 at age eight on a wagon load of tobacco from Rockingham County with his father and brothers. He later lived in Winston-Salem and rode the streetcar daily to work downtown at R.J. Reynolds Plant No. 8 from 1921 until the cars stopped running in December of 1936. Mr. Richard Sheets came to Winston-Salem in 1911; he worked at the Red Chair Factory in Sunnyside for two years before getting a job with SPU. This was similar to the pattern of many who moved to Winston and worked for a chair factory while waiting for the better paying jobs to open at R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company. During this time R.J. Reynolds made its payroll in silver dollars in order to show how much its operation contributed to the community.
The development of Washington Park was aimed at a white, middle to upper-middle class clientele. Only Rawson Street and the 100 block of Acadia Avenue appear to have been black. The houses in these areas are working-class dwellings which housed tobacco and furniture workers as well as those who worked as maids, cooks, chauffeurs and gardeners for wealthy white families. Odell King who lived on Rawson Street was chauffeur and gardener to the Craiges on Cascade Avenue. Because there were few black families, black and white children played together. Many of the black families here were related, and an impressive number owned their houses. Shelton Penn bought land on Rawson Street as early as the 1890s; his son James V. Penn built a house there by 1915, and other family members built nearby.
The first church in the neighborhood was organized in 1914 and a lot purchased at the corner of Banner and Hollyrood for $1,700. The Sunday School was organized a year later on the second floor of C.D. Couch's two-story frame grocery store at the corner of Acadia Avenue and Hollyrood Street, one block south (now demolished; site of Crown Drugs today), and in the fall construction began on Schlatter Memorial Reformed Church; the handsome brick Gothic Revival church was completed in 1920 at a cost of $20,000.
The city's financial success was at its height in the 1920s. The population trebled from 1910 to 1930, making the Twin City the largest in the state by 1920. This translated into a house building boom greater even than that of the decades before. About half of all the houses in the Washington Park Historic District were built in the decade of the 1920s. By 1925 the city had seventy-three real estate companies, formed to take advantage of the need for new housing. Architectural firms had been established in Winston-Salem by 1925 and a number of architects practiced in the city. Several of them lived in Washington Park.
As the neighborhood grew, houses were moved within the district; the Eller-Davis House was among the earliest, moved in 1918 from Cascade Avenue to 14 Park Boulevard to become the first house on its block when the owners wanted a more up-to-date building on their Cascade Avenue lot. Along Acadia Avenue, as commercial ventures spread and streets were cut, houses were moved around the corner to be saved. For instance, the building at 2113 Hollyrood Street began life at 232 Acadia Avenue until Miles Swaim moved it to make room for his new grocery store in 1929. A block away another building had been moved twenty years earlier to make room for the opening of Konnoak View Drive (then Holton Street). Local tradition even reports that the house at 17 Park Boulevard was once a barn moved from the 200 block of Gloria Avenue and adapted into a residence.
With the beginning of the Depression in 1929, construction slowed in Washington Park as it did throughout most of North Carolina. Fortunately, most of the neighborhood's commercial establishments were owned rather than mortgaged so few were lost. Deed abstracts, however, show a large number of houses passing into the ownership of banks, mortgage and real estate concerns. Even so, Winston-Salem was not hit as hard as elsewhere. Catherine Bishir notes, "...with millions of unemployed Americans smoking cigarettes, Reynolds and other tobacco companies thrived. In 1931 Fortune magazine celebrated the firm's status as "America's most profitable tobacco concern," with profits of some $300 million a year." The fortunes did not pass easily to Reynolds's employees, but there were jobs here. After 1933 relief funds helped the construction industry to recover. Two stone and frame pavilions were constructed in the park in the 1930s although they apparently were not WPA projects.
Walter Lindsay was one who sailed through the Depression, although Cicero Lowe did not. Lindsay reportedly bought Lowe's Classical Revival mansion at 204 Cascade Avenue during the Depression for $12,000. He was plant superintendent at RJR's plant in Richmond, Virginia. When that plant was closed Lindsay was returned to Winston-Salem where he worked without a cut in pay until he took over after the death of the Winston-Salem plant superintendent.
Several of Washington Park's buildings are known to have been designed by architects, and many more are believed to have been architect-designed, though that information is not readily available. Willard C. Northup, who with Leet O'Brien formed the noted local firm of Northup & O'Brien, has been identified as the architect of four houses in Washington Park: The Horace Vance House at 100 Banner Avenue, built in 1914; the Charles Siewers House at 20 Cascade Avenue, built in 1916; the A H. Eller House at 129 Cascade Avenue, built in 1918 to replace the Victorian house moved to Park Boulevard; and John L. Gilmer's house at 605 Cascade Avenue, built in 1929 to replace his earlier house which had been destroyed by fire. A fifth building, Cicero Lowe's imposing Neoclassical Revival house at 204 Cascade Avenue, is often attributed to Northup as well. Northup was born in Michigan, moved to Asheville as a child, and received his architectural degree from the University of Pennsylvania. Around 1906 he moved to Winston-Salem, later became partner with Leet O'Brien and was active in the state's professional organizations. He became president of the North Carolina State Board of Architectural Examiners as well as a Fellow in the American Institute of Architects (AIA). He designed both commercial and residential buildings in Winston-Salem and throughout the state, and is most well known for his many Georgian Revival houses designed in the 1920s and 1930s.
Luther Lashmit, who practiced both with Northup's firm and alone, designed the major remodelling of Burton Craige's house at 134 Cascade Avenue in 1928. He transformed a mid-nineteenth century brick farmhouse to an elegant Colonial Revival house. A few years before, Lashmit had designed the award-winning Fleshman-Graham House at 207 Cascade Avenue for the daughter of wealthy parents next door. Lashmit was a native of Winston-Salem where he practiced for many decades before his death in the late 1980s. He studied architecture at Carnegie Institute of Technology and attended the Fountainbleau Ecole des Beaux Arts in France. Like Northup & O'Brien, with whom he worked, Lashmit designed a large number of period revival residences, primarily for wealthy families. Perhaps his most well-known is Graylyn, the Norman Revival estate completed in 1931. He also designed the R.J. Reynolds, Jr., house in 1940 in the International Style (demolished 1978).
Interestingly, several architects lived in Washington Park. Hall Crews grew up at 418 Acadia Avenue, studied architecture at Columbia University and joined a New York firm. He later worked for a while in Northup's firm, was licensed in 1923 and practiced from the house at 418 Acadia Avenue for many years. Crews designed Augsburg Lutheran Church in the West End neighborhood in 1926, and the Modern Chevrolet building in the International style in 1947. He is said to have designed Schlatter Memorial Church, a Gothic Revival style brick building completed at 236 Banner Avenue in 1920; however, this should be confirmed as Crews did not become a registered architect until 1923. No other buildings in the neighborhood are attributed to Crews at this time. At 180 Park Boulevard lived J.T. Levesque, the office manager for C. Gilbert Humphreys. Like Macklin, Humphreys was born in England; he designed some of the grand houses for Winston-Salem's wealthy in the Stratford Road and West End areas, and it is possible that some of Cascade Avenue's large houses are his work as well. Harold Macklin was a popular local architect who lived first on Gloria Avenue, then in a Bungalow at 330 Vintage Avenue; no buildings in the Washington Park Historic District have been identified as Macklin's. Finally, William E. Miller's son, William F. Miller, was an architect. "Big Will" was a vice-president of Fogle Bros.; "Little Will" and his father built several houses together on Park Boulevard.
The streetcar's location on Cascade Avenue was the reason for that avenue's large showy houses, as well as for the hundreds of less elegant dwellings which make up the neighborhood which formed around it. Most of the earliest houses in the Washington Park Historic District are traditional vernacular frame buildings, generally one story in height, either gable-sided or L-shaped in plan, with ornamentation found only in the turned posts and sawn brackets of the front porch, and perhaps in a shingled gable. Larger, two-story I-houses were also built, and similar-sized houses in the Queen Anne style. However, the Craftsman style of architecture is perhaps the most well-represented style in the district. Many of the lots in the Washington Park neighborhood were purchased as speculative investments, and "pattern-book houses" were erected, so-called because their plans and designs were made available in popular magazines and publications. The Craftsman style with its broad eaves and porch was popular nationally and was well suited to the southern climate. The style, known as Bungalow, was easily adaptable to a range of income levels as is reflected in the variety of Bungalows found in the district. The buildings generally follow a limited number of floor plans but allow almost limitless individualism through the mixing of porch placement, complex roof configurations, knee braces, various styles of applied siding, including decorative half-timbering, and design of the porch's supports and balustrade.
The Washington Park Historic District also boasts a concentration of Foursquares and two-story Colonial Revival dwellings. A study of deed abstracts shows that houses changed owners frequently in the 1910s and 1920s. Perhaps the increasing sophistication and prosperity of the city's middle class prodded them to move to two-story houses.
The houses constructed in Washington Park during the 1930s Depression were not modest, but represent a continuation of residential styles of the 1920s. Gambrel-roofed frame houses with large shed dormers creating full second stories and those in the Tudor Revival style dominated. The change in domestic architecture in the neighborhood came in the 1940s when building materials and styles changed. Houses continued to be built in the Tudor Revival style in 1940 and 1941 and even later, but box-like house forms began to take over.
By the 1950s a combination of factors led to new construction in the neighborhood. However, the concentration on design which had been so much a part of pre-World War II architecture was not in evidence in the small speculative housing built after the war.
Macklin was born in England, educated in London, and moved to Winston-Salem in 1919, establishing his architectural practice. He formed a partnership with William Roy Wallace (who had come to Winston Salem with Charles Barton Keen for construction of Reynolds High School and Reynolda House, and remained). Before the Depression, the offices of Macklin and Wallace required the entire twelfth floor of the Reynolds Building. Unlike those of Lashmit and Northup, most of Macklin's designs were for commercial and institutional buildings. His designs include the Journal and Sentinal building, the YWCA on Glade Street in West End, the YMCA on Spruce Street, and the Pepper Building downtown (he was also architect for its remodelling), but his most prominent work was as associate architect for nationally-known Cram & Ferguson's design for St. Paul's Episcopal Church, one of the most outstanding Gothic Revival structures in the region. (Sources: Phillips & Taylor's West End nomination, and Fowler and Macklin interviews)
Bishir, Catherine W. North Carolina Architecture, Chapel Hill: UNC Press, 1990.
Bishir, Catherine W. and Lawrence S. Earley, eds. Early Twentieth-Century Suburbs in North Carolina, Raleigh: NC Department of Cultural Resources, 1985.
Bishir, Catherine W., Charlotte V. Brown, Carl R. Lounsbury, Ernest H. Wood III, Architects and Builders in North Carolina: A History of the Practice of Building. Chapel Hill: UNC Press, 1990.
Branson, Rev. L., et. Branson's North Carolina Business Directory. Raleigh: J.A. Jones, 1872 and 1896.
Brownlee,. Fambrough L. Winston-Salem; A Pictorial History, Norfolk: The Donnig Company, Publishers, 1977.
Black Leaders of the Twentieth Century, Chicago: Univ. of Illinois Press, 1982.
Davis, Chester S. The Character of the Community, monograph, 1976.
Fries, Adelaide L., Stuart Thurman Wright and J. Edwin Hendricks: Forsyth, The History of a County on the March, Chapel Hill, UNC Press, revised edition 1976.
Lefler, Hugh Talmage, and Albert Ray Newsome. North Carolina: The History of a Southern State. Chapel Hill, N.C.: University of North Carolina Press, second edition, 1963.
McAlester, Virginia and Lee. A Field Guide to American Houses. New York: Alfred A Knopf, 1989.
Powell, William S. North Carolina, A History. New York: W.W. Norton & Company, Inc., and Nashville: American Association for State and Local History, 1977.
Powell, William S. Dictionary of North Carolina Biography.
Powell, William S. The North Carolina Gazetteer, Chapel Hill, UNC Press, 1968.
Taylor, Gwynne Stephens. From Frontier to Factory: An Architectural History of Forsyth County. Winston-Salem: City County Planning Board of Forsyth Co. and Winston-Salem, 1981.
Wellman, Manly Wade, and Larry Edward Tise. Winston-Salem in History, Volumes 1-13. Winston-Salem: Historic Winston, 1976.
Winston-Salem, City of Industry, Winston Printing, no date.
Winston-Salem Section, North Carolina Chapter, American Institute of Architects. Architectural Guide: Winston-Salem, Forsyth County, Winston Salem: Winston-Salem Section, NCAIA, 1978.
Withey, Henry F. and Elsie Rathburn Withey. Biographical Dictionary of American Architects (deceased). Los Angeles: Hennessey and Ingalls, Inc., 1970.
Maps, Plats and Deeds
"Bird's Eye View of the Twin Cities, Winston-Salem, North Carolina, 1891." Madison, Wisconsin: Ruger and Stone, 1891.
Forsyth County Register of Deeds. Deed Books. Forsyth County "Hall of Justice", Winston-Salem.
Forsyth County Register of Deeds. Plat Books. Forsyth County "Hall of Justice," Winston-Salem.
Forsyth County Tax Mapping Office. Tax maps, Deed abstracts. Forsyth County (old) Courthouse, Winston-Salem.
Microfilm of the Union Republican, Winston-Salem Journal, the Sentinel. North Carolina Room, Forsyth County Public Library.
Clippings in subject files. North Carolina Room, Forsyth County Public Library.
Building Permits, City of Winston-Salem, from ca. 1930-1950s.
City Directories of Winston-Salem, 1886-1980s (some volumes are missing).
Newspaper clippings, unpublished manuscripts in the subject files at North Carolina Room, Forsyth County public library.
Phillips, Laura A.W., and Gwynne S. Taylor. National Register nomination for West End Historic District, 1986.
Sanborn Map Company: Sanborn maps of Winston-Salem, 1885, 1890, 1895, 1900 1907, 1912, 1917, 1928, 1948.
Interviews were held in 1990 and 1901 and were conducted by trained volunteers of the Washington Park Neighborhood Association and by Langdon E. Oppermann. Not included in this list are numerous residents of the district interviewed in the field who were generous with their time and supplied helpful leads and information on their properties and those of their neighbors.
Frank Albright, Ph.D., conducted by Joan Seiffert; Reid Bahnson, M.D., conducted by Joan Seiffert; Frances Barrow, conducted by Dennis Walker; Mrs. Ivan Basch (Flora), conducted by Kay McKnight; Mary Cash, conducted by Peter Marsh; N.L. Cooper, Sr., conducted by Langdon Oppermann; Foil Craver, conducted by Langdon Oppermann; Gerry Baynes Eggleston, conducted by Joan Seiffert; Mrs. Fred Fansler, conducted by Gerry Eggleston; Margaret Macklin Fowler, daughter of architect Harold Macklin, conducted by Langdon Oppermann; Troy Hamrick, two interviews, conducted by David E. Gall and Langdon Oppermann; George Frank Hartman, conducted by Gerry Eggleston; John Harrison, conducted by Langdon Oppermann; Nick Jameson (Director, City Recreation Department), conducted by Langdon Oppermann; Walter and Louise Leonard, conducted by Peter Marsh; Ronald Macklin, son of architect Harold Macklin, conducted by Langdon Oppermann; Elizabeth Montgomery, conducted by Dennis and Charlene Walker; Hazel Brame Moore, conducted by Gerry Eggleston; Nanny Lou Moreau, conducted by Dennis Walker; Lester & Byerly Morris, conducted by Karen Holland; Marjorie Northup, daughter-in-law of architect Willard Northup, conducted by Langdon Oppermann; Thelma M. Penn, conducted by Langdon Oppermann; Bertha Sheak, conducted by Dennis Walker; William Herman Smith, conducted by Charlene Walker; Conrad Stonestreet, conducted by Langdon Oppermann; Kathleen Suave and sister Dottie Bobbitt, conducted by Dennis Walker; Antoinette Barrow Swan, conducted by Joan Seiffert; Horace Vance, conducted by Karen Holland.
‡ Langdon Edmunds Oppermann, Preservation and Planning Consultant, Washington Park Historic District, Winston-Salem, Forsyth County, NC, nomination document, 1991, National Park Service, National Register of Historic Places, Washington, D.C.
Acadia Avenue • Banner Avenue East • Banner Avenue West • Broad Street • Cascade Avenue • Doune Street • Gloria Avenue • Hollywood Street • Konnoak View Drive • Main Street South • Park Boulevard • Rawson Street • Shawnee Street • Sunnyside Avenue • Vintage Avenue • Violet Street