New for Sale: 13 Houses in Greensboro’s College Hill Historic District and Nearby Neighborhoods, Listed All at Once

Greensboro landlord James Dutton owned 13 rental houses when he died last month. All have been put up for sale at once with a total asking price of almost $5 million. Nine are in the College Hill Historic District. All were built between about 1896 and 1926, and all were originally single-family houses, split into apartments decades ago. Except for two houses on North Cedar Street, they’re close to UNCG.

Among them are relatively simple Queen Annes, Queen Anne-Colonial Revivals and Foursquares. One suffered a fire in 1992, leaving only the exterior intact; the interior had to be entirely rebuilt (that was before James Dutton bought it). Some were previously owned by Dutton’s parents, Herman Clarence Dutton and Agnes B. Dutton, going back as far as 1939. Two were bought in 2021.

The houses are listed for sale separately. Any could be returned to single-family residences, and many could be very impressive. Most of the prices are relatively high for restoration projects, but they’re also high for rental properties in their respective neighborhoods, particularly considering Dutton’s evident, decades-long disinterest in maintenance and investment. Only two of the houses have central air conditioning, according to county property tax records (and at least one already had it when Dutton bought it). Eleven of the 13 are painted white. Some are listed with more apartments than bathrooms, according to county records; some bathroom additions may not have been reported for property-tax purposes.

The houses have had an intriguing group of owners through the years. Former owners include James A. Odell, prominent early business leader and hardware-store owner; the chairman of the railway telegraphers union (whether local or national isn’t known); a noteworthy Presbyterian preacher; the Methodist Episcopal Church; a police captain; a turn-of-the-century photographer; an entrepreneur whose businesses were wiped out by the Depression; a woman who was foreclosed upon by two of her children; and a dealer in candy, peanuts and popcorn. In addition to the Duttons, a couple of owners turn up associated with multiple houses.

College Hill Houses

630 Joyner Street, Greensboro

  • $400,000
  • 4 apartments, each with 1 bedroom and 1 bathroom; 2,656 square feet, 0.21 acre
  • Price/square foot: $151
  • Built in 1920 (per county, but probably earlier; see note)
  • Listed November 23, 2022
  • Last sale: $300,000, February 2021
  • Note: No central air conditioning
    • District NRHP nomination: “Colonial Revival foursquare”
    • William J. Moose bought the property in 1904 and built the house as a single-family residence by 1907, when the address first appeared in the city directory. William was a photographer and proprietor of Moose’s Studio. The house was a rental property until 1918, when William was listed as living there along with his wife, Ella Arinna Stoker Moose (1860-1925); sons Walter and Henry, both listed as being in the Army; Walter’s wife, Stella; and daughter Willie May.
    • William sold the house in 1931. After the buyer lost it in a foreclosure, the house was bought in 1938 by Marjorie Little Kennedy Jarrett (1898-1994), who owned it for 45 years. By 1939 it had been divided into four apartments.

614 S. Mendenhall Street, Greensboro
The Hunt-Norman House

  • $350,000
  • 3 apartments, each apartment has 1 bedroom and 1 bathroom; 1,814 square feet, 0.20 acre
  • Price/square foot: $193
  • Built in 1910 (per county, but probably earlier; see note)
  • Listed November 23, 2022
  • Last sale: $235,000, January 2018
  • Neighborhood: College Hill Historic District (local and NRHP)
  • Note: No central air conditioning
  • District NRHP nomination: “Burned and condemned in 1992, only the shell of this dwelling survive[d].”
    • John Townsend Hunt (1862-1933), builder and contractor, bought the property in 1904 from Greensboro Brick Company, located nearby at 1006 Spring Garden Street (now part of the UNCG campus). Hunt built the house; the city directory listed him living there as early as 1905. He owned the property until 1919, but by 1908 he was living elsewhere and renting it out. He and his wife, Margaret D. Stockton Hunt (1868-1953), had four children. Two sons died in infancy. Another died at age seven. Their daughter, Virginia Louise, lived to be 38.
    • The Hunts sold the house to George W. Norman (1886-1957) and Elva Pfaff Norman (1886-1963). They lived there the rest of their lives, 44 years for Elva. George was a clerk. Elva sold the house in January 1963; the deed is dated six days before her death at age 76.

618 S. Mendenhall Street, Greensboro

  • $325,000
  • 3 apartments, each apartment has 1 bedroom and 1 bathroom; 2,080 square feet, 0.20 acre
  • Price/square foot: $156
  • Built in 1915
  • Listed November 23, 2022
  • Last sale: $37,500, November 1984
  • Neighborhood: College Hill Historic District (local and NRHP)
  • Note: No central air conditioning
    • Listings in the city directory indicate the house was split into apartments sometime after 1967.
    • The address first appears in the city directory in 1917, suggesting the house was built as a rental property by Howard G. Alexander. He owned the property from 1912 to 1919 but lived at 122 Tate Street. He was chairman of Railway Telegraphers.
    • In 1919 Alexander sold this house and his Tate Street house to Jerry Martin Moser (1876-1948) and Clara Florence Moser (1885-1967). The Mosers owned 618 S. Mendenhall for 54 years and, like Alexander, used it as a rental property. Jerry was a teller at American Exchange National Bank at the time. He was working as an insurance agent at the time of his death at age 71.
    • In 1984 the house was bought by Herman Clarence Dutton (1905-2004) and Agnes Beasley Dutton (1907-1995). It has been owned by the Dutton family ever since.

820 Rankin Place, Greensboro

  • $300,000
  • 3 apartments, each apartment has 1 bedroom and 1 bathroom; 1,953 square feet, 0.26 acre
  • Price/square foot: $154
  • Built in 1904
  • Listed November 23, 2022
  • Last sale: $90,000, December 1995
  • Neighborhood: College Hill Historic District (local and NRHP)
  • Note: No central air conditioning
  • District NRHP nomination: “Queen Anne/Colonial Revival”
    • The address first appears in the city directory in 1907 with Roy G. Craver listed as the resident. He was a clerk with Railway Mail Service. Roy had bought the property in 1905; he sold it in 1910.

122 Tate Street, Greensboro
The Alexander-Moser House

  • $365,000
  • The listing says there are 4 apartments, but county records show a total of 4 bedrooms and only 2 bathrooms; 2,201 square feet, 0.17 acre
  • Price/square foot: $166
  • Built in 1920 (per county, but probably earlier; see note)
  • Listed November 23, 2022
  • Last sale: $37,500, November 1984
  • Neighborhood: College Hill Historic District (local and NRHP)
  • Note: No central air conditioning
    • The address first appears in the 1913-14 city directory with Horace G. Alexander listed as living there. Alexander was chairman of Railway Telegraphers.
    • In 1919 Alexander sold the house to Jerry Martin Moser (1876-1948) and Clara Florence Moser (1885-1967). They lived in the house until their deaths. Jerry was a teller at American Exchange National Bank. He was working as an insurance agent at the time of his death at age 71.
    • In 1984 the house was bought by Herman Clarence Dutton (1905-2003) and Agnes Beasley Dutton (1907-1995). It has been owned by the Dutton family ever since.

124 Tate Street, Greensboro

  • $325,000
  • 3 apartments, total of 4 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms (per county records); 2,367 square feet, 0.17 acre
  • Price/square foot: $137
  • Built in 1919
  • Listed November 23, 2022
  • Last sale: June 1972, price illegible on deed
  • Neighborhood: College Hill Historic District (local and NRHP)
  • Note: No central air conditioning
  • District NRHP nomination: “Craftsman Foursquare”
    • The earliest documented resident was Horace G. Alexander, listed in the 1920 city directory. He bought the property in 1919 and sold it in 1921 to Orlando Bruce Barnes. The house remained in the Barnes family for 51 years.
    • O.B. died just two months after buying the house. His obituary described him as “one of the well-known citizens of Greensboro.” He had been in the real estate business.
    • His widow, Sallie A. Eanes Barnes (1861-1956), lived in the house for another 35 years. Then their daughter Bessie Barnes (1881-1969) lived there until her death at age 88. Her heirs sold the house in 1973 to Herman and Agnes Dutton, who lived next door at 126 Tate Street.

126 Tate Street, Greensboro
The Lizzie Battle House

  • $350,000
  • 3 apartments, 4 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, according to county records; 2,745 square feet, 0.24 acre
  • Price/square foot: $128
  • Built in 1900
  • Listed November 23, 2022
  • Last sale: $5,000, July 1939
  • Neighborhood: College Hill Historic District (local and NRHP)
  • Note: No central air conditioning
  • District NRHP nomination: “The Queen Anne and Colonial Revival style features of this early twentieth-century dwelling include a stepped-back facade; a high-hip and cross-gable roof; a cutaway side bay; gables filled with imbricated shingles; and a porch of attenuated columns on brick piers.”
    • Elizabeth A. Battle (dates unknown) bought the house in 1904 and was listed at the address in 1905, the first time it appeared in the city directory. She was the widow of L.A. Battle (dates unknown).
    • In 1917 she sold the house to the Methodist Episcopal Church. By then she was living in Craven County. No further information on her appears to be available online.
    • In 1939 the church sold the house to Herman Clarence Dutton (1905-2003) and Agnes Beasley Dutton (1907-1995). It was their residence for decades and has been owned by the Dutton family ever since. Herman was in the fruit business and later was a truck driver. From 1957, Agnes was a sales clerk and later manager of the Friendly Toy and Hobby Shop.

130 Tate Street, Greensboro
The Samuel and Mary Rankin House

  • $350,000
  • 3 apartments, 5 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms; 2,292 square feet, 0.17 acre
  • Price/square foot: $153
  • Built around 1907 (see note)
  • Listed November 23, 2022
  • Last sale: $295,000, May 2021
  • Neighborhood: College Hill Historic District (local and NRHP)
  • Note: Has central air conditioning
    • County records give the house a 1940 date, but city directories show a residence at the address from 1907. The historic district’s NRHP nomination says 1905-10.
  • District NRHP nomination: “Queen Anne/Colonial Revival”
    • Rev. Samuel M. Rankin (1864-1939) bought the house in 1907. It wasn’t sold again until 1956, when the heirs of his widow, Mary Wharton Rankin (1871-1956), sold it. He was a Presbyterian minister and historian. He served as chairman of the Presbyterian Home Missions committee.
    • In 1956, the buyers were Dallas Flobert Jarrett (1904-1966) and Marjorie Little Kennedy Jarrett (1898-1994), who lived next door at 200 Tate Street. It remained in their family for 40 years. Marjorie also owned 630 Joyner Street.

201 Tate Street, Greensboro
The Joseph I. Husband House

  • $550,000
  • 8 apartments, county records show 7 bedrooms and 7 bathrooms; 3,278 square feet, 0.25 acre
  • Price/square foot: $168
  • Built in 1910 (per county)
  • Listed November 23, 2022
  • Last sale: $19,000, September 1974
  • Neighborhood: College Hill Historic District (local and NRHP)
  • Note: No central air conditioning
  • District NRHP nomination: “An ornate porch complete with brackets, spindles, and turned posts wraps around the stepped-back facade and cutaway front bay of this large, intact, Queen Anne style dwelling. which was built for contractor Husband about 1904.”
    • The address first appears in the city directory in 1905 with Joseph Husband (1855-1913) listed as the resident. He was a contractor and builder. He owned the house until his death in 1913 but was last listed as living there in 1908.
    • In 1919 the house was sold to Caroline Mullin Hunter (1870-1938). Her name alone is on the deed (as “Carrie” rather than Caroline), but the city directory listed the residents in its typical way as “Hunter, Henry (wife).” William Henry Hunter (1865-1929) was a grocer. Oddly, the house was sold in a foreclosure proceeding in 1939, one year and a day after Carrie died. The foreclosure action had been brought by two of her children, from whom she borrowed money in 1933.
    • One of the two children, William Henry Hunter Jr. (1908-1950), and his wife, Frances M. Hunter (dates unknown), ended up owning the house. They made it a rental by 1940 and sold it in 1944.
    • William Lee Rudd (1894-1973) bought the house in 1946 and divided it into apartments around 1950. Rudd lived in Burlington. He was the proprietor of Burlington Landscape Nursery.
    • James Dutton and his wife, Linda Kay Dutton, bought the house from Rudd’s estate in 1974, partnering with another couple. James gained full ownership in 2010.

Outside the Historic District

407 N. Cedar Street, Greensboro

  • $275,000
  • Two apartments, 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, 1,522 square feet, 0.25 acre
  • Price/square foot: $181
  • Built around 1896 (see note)
  • Listed November 23, 2022
  • Last sale: $54,000, June 2016
  • Neighborhood: Cedar Street/Bellemeade
  • Note: No central air conditioning
    • County records date the house to 1910, but city directories show the address beginning in 1896.
    • The original owners were Robert E. Pearce (1868-1923) and Sarah Emma Pearce (1872-1967). He was listed in different years as a police officer and a plasterer. His gravestone reads “Capt. R.E. Pearce,” presumably his rank in the police.
    • Robert bought the property in 1893 and in 1902 sold it to Kindred R. Allsbrook (1849-1924) and Lydia Margaret Harris Allsbrook (1860-1924). They lived in the house until selling it in 1919. Kindred was listed in various years as a confectioner; a dealer of fruit, peanuts or popcorn; and finally as a farmer (while still listed as living at 407 N. Cedar Street).

409 N. Cedar Street, Greensboro

  • $560,000
  • Number of apartments, bedrooms and bathrooms not listed; 4,360 square feet, 0.25 acre
  • Price/square foot: $128
  • Built around 1899
  • Listed November 23, 2022
  • Last sale: $250,000, April 2015
  • Neighborhood: Cedar Street/Bellemeade
  • Note: No central air conditioning
    • County property records date the house to 1935, but the city directory shows the address from 1899. The resident then apparently was James A. Porter (1847-1916). He was listed at the address until 1905. James was an an upholsterer and, according to his obituary in the Greensboro Daily News, he fought in the Confederate Army as a teenager. Although he was living in Arkansas when he died, he had lived in Greensboro for 20 years, “during which time he and his estimable family made a large number of friends, all of whom learned of his passing with sincere regret.” He was survived by seven far-flung children, living in Georgia, New Mexico, New York, Tennessee, Virginia, Cuba and “Bogato, Columbus, S.A.”
    • The house may have been built as a rental property by James Alexander Odell (1841-1930), founder of Odell Hardware and one of the more prominent local business leaders of the time. (He lived at 313 East Washington Street, which is now a parking lot across the street from The Depot). The neighborhood was plotted in 1890 as the “Odell addition,” and a 1909 deed records this property’s sale by James and Mary Jane Prescott Odell (1842-1918) to “Lucie E. Northcott, wife of J.A. Northcott.” The Northcotts lived at 405 N. Cedar. They converted 409 N. Cedar from a single-family home into six apartments by 1949.

1504 W. Friendly Avenue, Greensboro

  • $325,000
  • Three apartments, bedrooms not specified in listing or county records, 1 1/2 bathrooms, 1,764 square feet, 0.18 acre
  • Price/square foot: $184
  • Built in 1918
  • Listed November 23, 2022
  • Last sale: $125,000, November 2015
  • Neighborhood: West Market Terrace
  • Note: No central air conditioning
    • The original owner was George Garland Hendricks Sr. (1855-1931), a wholesale feed dealer. He bought the house in 1920, and he and his children owned it until 1986. He was listed at 1606 West Market Plaza, the home’s original address, in 1921, the first year the street appeared in the city directory. Also at the address were his daughter Eddith Sarah Hendricks (1887-1966) and son Joseph Hadley Hendricks (1898-1985). After George’s death, Eddith and her sister Lura Hendricks (1880-1953) lived in the house. Joseph’s heirs sold it in 1986.

1806 Walker Avenue, Greensboro

  • $415,000
  • Number of apartments not specified, 3 bedrooms, 2 1/2 bathrooms; 3,826 square feet, 0.15 acre
  • Price/square foot: $106
  • Built in 1926
  • Listed November 23, 2022
  • Last sale: $130,000, July 1, 1995
  • Neighborhood: College Park
  • Note: Has central air conditioning
    • The original owner was Robert Odell Holland (1900-1992). He used the house as a rental property, but it sat vacant until 1930. Odell faced worse setbacks in the Depression. When he bought the property in 1926, he operated Holland Building and Finance, Holland Radio Company and Holland Service Station. By 1932, his only remaining business was Holland Sound & Vision Company. By 1936, when he lost the house to foreclosure, he was a manufacturer’s agent.

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