I wonder if you have eyes to see? Let me show you something that lay beneath an overlay of time. In some cases, that time has dimmed the color and vivaciousness of what once was, but don’t be put off by that. I want you to look at the historic district of Edgemont, a subdivision three blocks east of Main Street in Rocky Mount. The principal avenue is Tarboro Street, flanked by Sycamore and Hill Streets, that compose the core of the area. There are also four crossing streets and service alleys through the centers of the blocks.
The first time I drove through Edgemont it was as if I had discovered a table laid before me set with beautiful crystal, china, and sterling silver. I know you’ll think this too flowery, but Edgemont deserves hyperbole! What we are looking at is a significant area in the community’s development that is one of the major subdivisions of the city’s pre-World War II boom. The area warrants our attention and newfound appreciation. In the world of real estate, Edgemont has one of the most intact collections of historical residential designs in Rocky Mount. These houses and garages of matching architectural design have strong architectural significance.
Please share this post with any realtors you know because this is a call to them and everyone who appreciates architecture and our history; go and reacquaint yourselves with the area. Imagine how these homes came to be. Think of the Atlantic Coast Line Railroad, which had its repair shops in Rocky Mount, and the town’s tobacco market booming in the early twentieth century. Edgemont developed as one of the most stylish of the town’s neighborhoods. For the next twenty-five years doctors, lawyers, tobacconists, salesmen, clerks, and employees of the Atlantic Coast Line Railroad built Bungalows, Foursquare’s, Colonial and Tudor Revival style houses on the spacious, flat lots. The preservation of this exceptional neighborhood is in keeping with a sense of place that is available to those who are drawn here. Edgemont is exactly what they want in their lives, but if realtors don’t bring them into the area, how will it be found? What could be better than owning a home that honors the past, while going forth from your front door into the future?
We will continue with more about Edgemont tomorrow. I want to leave you with a Harry Potter line from the Goblet of Fire. Harry walks into what looks to be a small ordinary tent from the outside. When he steps inside he finds a large and beautifully decorated palace-looking space. Amazed, he slowly grins. Harry says, “I love magic.”
Edgemont is a magic kind of place.