Save This Pup!

It’s been a long road for George, but we are happy to announce that we’ve found a new home for him — at the new home of Preservation North Carolina!  That’s right, George will be with us at our new headquarters office at the Hall and Graves-Fields Houses in Raleigh’s Oberlin Village!

George’s Story

We first met George at the Gotno Farm in Raleigh, a local attraction for many years and home to Raleigh’s last Lustron house. George was lovingly created by Gotno Farm owner, George Morris. Morris, a plaster artist, also created several other plaster sculptures and built a 1949 Lustron house. When Gotno Farm was recently sold, Preservation NC and the Raleigh Historic Development Commission teamed up to save the Lustron house.  We were given 30 days to find a new location for the Lustron house and a new home for George.  In case you missed it, check out George’s story in the videos here and here.  You can also learn more about George’s original home (Gotno Farm) and owner, George Morris at Strange Carolinas.

We knew right away that George was more than just a plaster sculpture.  He soon became our unofficial mascot, representing all the “poor pups” Preservation NC works to save — after all, we are the “animal shelter for historic preservation.” Like many of our “special pups” the Hall and Graves-Fields Houses are significant historic landmarks, and without Preservation NC’s intervention, they would be lost.


A Meaningful New Headquarters for Preservation NC

Preservation North Carolina is working to acquire, relocate, and renovate the Rev. Plummer T. Hall House and the Graves-Fields House, two of Raleigh’s most important African-American landmarks surviving from the freedman’s community of Oberlin, and use the two structures as its Headquarters Office. Both the houses are individually listed in the National Register of Historic Places and are Raleigh landmarks. Built in the 1880s, they vividly tell remarkable post-Civil War stories where former slaves optimistically embraced the importance of hard work and education as the means to provide a better life for themselves and their children. They and their descendants overcame relentless obstacles with remarkable achievements.

The preservation of these two houses will have significant and inspirational educational value as these stories are told and new information uncovered. Further, these houses help tell the story of Oberlin Village, which ran about twelve blocks from Hillsborough Street to what is now Wade Avenue. By 1880, it had about 1,000 residents and for decades was a thriving community with churches, schools, businesses and homes. When Cameron Village Shopping Center was built in the early 1950s and Oberlin Road became a major thoroughfare, the modest remnants of Oberlin village disappeared block-by-block, house-by-house. The Hall and Graves-Fields Houses are two of only five remaining landmarks in Oberlin and are stranded amidst new development. Having PNC’s Headquarters Office in two of the most important landmarks remaining in Oberlin will underscore our commitment to diversity in preservation. Their visibility will be exceptional. Click HERE for more on the Preservation NC Headquarters project.

Watch the video below to hear the Hall and Graves-Fields Houses/Preservation NC Headquarters story!