Last year, after generations of family ownership, the deed for the Rev. Plummer T. Hall House ended up with the city as part of a bid to save the historic landmark and its place in local African-American history.
The unusual transfer brought together the homeowners, preservationists and city officials, who say the Oberlin Road house now is ready to make its debut on the real-estate market.
“We just really want to see it back with someone living in it,” said Martha Lauer, executive director of the Raleigh Historic Development Commission.
Preservation North Carolina is handing the sale and has listed the one-story Queen Anne-style house at $226,000. The group expects to begin accepting offers soon on the house, which is located between Hillsborough Street and Wade Avenue.
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The house is a Raleigh Historic Landmark and listed on the National Register of Historic Places, making it eligible for historic preservation tax credits.
The Plummer T. Hall House was built between 1880 and 1893 when the neighborhood was a freedman’s village called Oberlin. It’s the last remaining structure with direct ties to the Oberlin Baptist Church, an important gathering place for local families at the time.
Hall, a minister, was the first pastor of the First Baptist Church of Oberlin, which later joined with Mt. Moriah Church to become the Oberlin Baptist Church.
Churches were among the first and most prominent institutions established by African-Americans after the end of slavery and were central to the spiritual and civic lives of the communities that built them, according to the house’s national register nomination form.
The original Oberlin Baptist Church burned in 1955.
The house also is notable for its distinctive architectural features, said Robert Parrott, regional director of Preservation NC.
The first is a gazebo built into the north end of the porch. The second is a small front room added to the southern corner of the house where Hall kept his pastoral office that can be accessed from the porch as well as through the house.
After Hall died in the early 20th century, the house passed through several generations before it became a financial burden to an elderly relative living there. The family agreed to transfer the deed to the city as an alternative to foreclosure.
The house does include a historic preservation agreement held by Capital Area Preservation that put some restrictions on how the house can be modified, though changes are allowed to accommodate modern uses. No part of the house can be removed or demolished without the group’s permission.
Proceeds from the sale will pay off any remaining debts associated with it and go to the city’s preservation loan fund, Lauer said.