View Full Version : Mufreesboro Preservation Meeting- July 21

07-15-2006, 10:45 AM
From Kay Morrow, the gal in Mufreesboro who is trying desperately to keep yet another historic home from being destroyed by the rampant development which is enroaching Stones River NMP-

Hi everyone...

Again, another travesty. Erin reported in the DNJ this morning that Murfreesboro lost another historic home, the Loyd Haven home. (Thank you Dan Deal for the link.)

This just goes to show that we HAVE to get moving on our preservation efforts. As you all know, there is a meeting on July 21st at 1pm at St. Mark's United Methodist Church. It is a Friday, in the middle of the day, making it difficult for some of us to take off work and get there. However, I think it will be informational, inspirational, and hopefully a chance for us to try to assemble some sort of organization.

I will be the first to admit that I am having difficulty getting everyone organized and into a group. I am trying everything I can to respond to each and every email that comes our way from someone who is interested in preservation...meetings are being scheduled and things are happening, but it doesn't seem to be moving as fast as the bulldozers.

I am hoping that the meeting on Friday will be a sort of "buffet" of preservation groups...perhaps some of you are more interested in old homes than you are the Battlefield. Perhaps some of you are interested in both. That is why I created the savemurfreesboro@yahoo.com , because it sort of encompasses everything and we can communicate with everyone from varied interest groups.

I will be honest with you and tell you that my heart now lies with the Friends of Stones River Battlefield (because of the precious Jenkins house). Their interests are more with preservation of the homes associated with the Battle of Stones River and the actual Battlefield than they would be with the historic district over at MTSU, for example. That is why the next focus is the McCulloch house on River Rock...it was the headquarters of General Hardee during the Civil War. We recently lost our request to stop the City from removing 17.9 acres from the Battlefield Protection Overlay District.

Some of you may have interests beyond the Battlefield. You may want to see ALL historic homes over 75 years old preserved. If that is your main interest, we may want to hook you up with Historic Murfreesboro, another new group that has risen out of fear of encroachment by MTSU.

We will know so much more after the meeting on the 21st. I think one of the first things we will have to do (and I hope this is confirmed at the meeting) is to identify ALL of the preservation groups, and direct specific interests to the correct preservation group. Then there will be a coalition comprised of representatives from each group to become a POWERFUL organization that can help all of the preservation groups because of what it will represent.

Again, I urge you to go to the meeting and get involved. I will send an email to everyone afterwards to let you know what happened, but if you are TRULY, truly worried and interested in what is happening to the history of Murfreesboro, I think you will be doing yourself and the community a disservice by not going, if you can make it. Again, I understand that work and other issues will prevent some from going but if you have the time I think you should be there!!!!

I'll be there, at the registration table. Come by and say hello! I'll be busy, but I would love to see faces and shake hands. You have to sign in and get a name tag anyway... : )

Kay Morrow


Silver Spring Guards
07-18-2006, 11:02 PM
Historic groups have 30 days to buy property
By ERIN EDGEMON edgemon@dnj.com Erin Edgemon, 278-5161

The president of Friends of Stones River National Battlefield says it's time for local historic preservation groups "to put their money where their mouth is."
James Patterson is hoping the group he leads and other historic preservation groups in Rutherford County can come up with $500,000 in 30 days to purchase the McCulloch House and the nearly 2 acres it sits on at 565 River Rock Blvd. and save the house that played a significant role in the Battle of Stones River from demolition.

Property owner Howard Wilson decided to extend the offer of selling the property for its appraised value to the group after reading in The Daily News Journal about the groups' efforts to save the Hiram Jenkins Home on Gresham Lane the home on the National Register of Historic Places was razed June 10 and their attention now turning to the McCulloch House.

"If they are going to do something, I want to give them the opportunity," he said, but "time is of the essence."
Stuart Johnson, superintendent of the Stones River National Battlefield, said the McCulloch House built in 1838 served as the headquarters for the Confederate Corps commander Lt. Gen. William J. Hardee at the start of the battle Dec. 31, 1862.

He said most of the homes that served as command headquarters are now gone.

Wilson said saving the historic house doesn't fit into the vision he has for the property and makes no economic sense. Wilson purchased the property in March for $375,000.

"I am not in a position to make a museum out of it or anything," he added, "but I want to give them the chance to do that."

Wilson, a local attorney, also is willing to donate the house to the groups if they will pay for the removal.

Selling the property to the historic groups for $500,000 is substantially less than Wilson stands to profit if he goes ahead with plans to have the property rezoned from commercial highway to a planned residential development to allow for the building of 30 townhouses on the site.

The preservation groups have 30 days to negotiate a deal with Wilson or he will go ahead with plans to have the home razed and build townhouses on the site located near the Verizon Wireless Call Center south of Old Fort Parkway. Wilson said he will only sell the house and property to the groups on the condition that they restore the house.

Kay Morrow, who spearheaded the failed effort to save the Hiram Jenkins House, is thrilled that Wilson is willing to work with them.

"That is wonderful," she said. "I think it is a great step in the right direction. We are excited and want to do everything we can to save the house."

Morrow said she would like to see the house in the hands of the Friends of Stones River National Battlefield, a community group designed to support the preservation of the battlefield.
"I am going to do everything in my power to get it there," she said.

The groups are meeting Friday at 1 p.m. at St. Mark's United Methodist Church at 1267 N. Rutherford Blvd. to coordinate their efforts and to determine if it would be possible to raise the money.

Wilson, a member of the Murfreesboro Planning Commission, and his partner Brian Burns, president of Signature Homes, were scheduled to go before the Murfreesboro Planning Commission with plans for their townhouse development, Cottages at River Rock, Wednesday. They decided to put off going before the body for a month to give the historic groups time to come up with the money.