Reid Street

310 North Reid Street.

The one hundred-nineteenth in a series of posts highlighting buildings in East Wilson Historic District, a national historic district located in Wilson, North Carolina. As originally approved, the district encompasses 858 contributing buildings and two contributing structures in a historically African-American section of Wilson. (A significant number have since been lost.) The district was developed between about 1890 to 1940 and includes notable examples of Queen Anne, Bungalow/American Craftsman, and Shotgun-style architecture. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1988.

As described in the nomination form for the East Wilson Historic District, this house is: “ca. 1930; 1 story; Thomas Foster house; bungalow with hip roof and engaged porch; Foster was janitor at Wilson post office.”

In the 1925, 1928 and 1930 Wilson city directories, Thomas and Olivia Foster are listed at 310 North Reid.

In the 1930 census of Wilson, Wilson County: owned and valued at $3000, Tom Foster, 45, post office janitor, and wife Oliva, 43.

In the 1940 census of Wilson, Wilson County: owned and valued at $3000, John T. Foster, 60, post office janitor; wife Olivia, 59; and her brother Claude Artist, 53, odd jobs.

In 1940, Du Bissette Best registered for the World War II draft in Wilson County. Per his registration card, he was born 26 January 1922 in Wilson; lived at 308 North Reid; his contact was Tom Foster, 310 North Reid; and he worked for W.G. Taylor, Taylor’s Barber Shop, 106 South Tarboro.

Tom Foster died 17 October 1956 at Mercy Hospital. Per his death certificate, he was born 3 April 1883 in Wayne County to John Thomas Foster and Louise Thompson; was married to Olivia Foster; worked as an elevator laborer; and resided at 310 North Reid.

Olivia Foster died 15 November 1956 at her home at 310 North Reid. Per her death certificate, she was born 4 October 1886 in Wayne County to Jesse Artis and Lucinda Hobbs; was a widow. Informant was Ada Rowe, 1006 Atlantic Street, Wilson.

Tom and Olivia Foster had mortgaged their home early in 1955 and, the spring after their deaths, the loan went into default. Trustee Wade A. Gardner posted this notice of sale in the local newspaper. Among the details: the Fosters had purchased the lot, part of the Rountree Tract, from Levi H. and Hannah Peacock in 1916.

Wilson Daily Times, 9 May 1957.

Around the same time, Tom Foster’s executor advertised a sale of the contents of the house, which offers an interesting glimpse at the typical furnishings of a working-class household in mid-century East Wilson.

Wilson Daily Times, 8 June 1957.

Claude Artis died 16 January 1960 at his home at 310 North Reid Street. Per his death certificate, he was born 3 January 1890 in Wayne County to Jesse Artis and Lucinda Hobbs; was never married; and worked as a laborer. Ada Rowe, 310 North Reid, was informant. (Claude Artis was Olivia Artis Foster’s brother. Did he buy the house, or did he pay rent to whomever purchased it?)

Photograph by Lisa Y. Henderson, July 2019.

406 North Reid Street.

The one hundred-eleventh in a series of posts highlighting buildings in East Wilson Historic District, a national historic district located in Wilson, North Carolina. As originally approved, the district encompasses 858 contributing buildings and two contributing structures in a historically African-American section of Wilson. (A significant number have since been lost.) The district was developed between about 1890 to 1940 and includes notable examples of Queen Anne, Bungalow/American Craftsman, and Shotgun-style architecture. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1988.

As described in the nomination form for the East Wilson Historic District: “ca. 1930; 1 story; bungalow with cross-gable roof and engaged porch; probably built as rental property.”

In the 1930 Hill’s Wilson, N.C, City Directory: Mercer Leroy (c; Mattie) driver C Woodard Co Inc h 406 N Reid

In 1940, Dempsey Mercer registered for the World War II draft. Per his registration card, he was born 19 November 1920 in Wilson; lived at 406 North Reid; worked for Willis Prince, 519 East Nash; and his contact was Leroy Mercer, 406 North Reid.

In the 1941 Hill’s Wilson, N.C., City Directory: Mercer Leroy (c; Mattie) driver Peacock Gro Co h 406 N Reid

Mattie K. Mercer died 24 August 1959 at her home at 406 North Reid. Per her death certificate, she was born 6 May 1892 in Enfield, N.C. to Berry King and Adeline Bellen and was married to Leroy Mercer. Informant was Mattie Best, 807 East Green.

Photograph taken by Lisa Y. Henderson, July 2109.

A Sears catalog house in East Wilson?

408 North Reid Street.

Reader Mela Sims identified the house at 408 North Reid Street as a Sears Honor Bilt catalog home (or facsimile) — the Barrington Model — which explains the dwelling’s unique lines among others in the neighborhood.

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“The Barrington retains the dignity of an old English home and has the practical interior of modern American architecture. Whether you consider economy, beauty or convenience as of first importance, The Barrington home assuredly meets these and every point of merit with satisfaction. Exterior features at once stamp the mark of quality. The well balanced projection at the front forms the entrance, leading to it is a tapestry brick terrace, which is equipped with a porch seat. Sided with wide shingles and exposed fireplace chimney.”

Thank you, Mela! Catalog page courtesy of antique-home.com. Photo by Lisa Y. Henderson, 2016.

309 North Reid Street.

The one hundred-second in a series of posts highlighting buildings in East Wilson Historic District, a national historic district located in Wilson, North Carolina. As originally approved, the district encompasses 858 contributing buildings and two contributing structures in a historically African-American section of Wilson. (A significant number have since been lost.) The district was developed between about 1890 to 1940 and includes notable examples of Queen Anne, Bungalow/American Craftsman, and Shotgun-style architecture. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1988.

As described in the nomination form for the East Wilson Historic District, this building is: “ca. 1930; 1 story; bungalow with hip roof and engaged porch that extends around north side.”

In the 1916 Hill’s Wilson, N.C., city directory: Baines Roscoe carp h Reid cor Carolina [This is the location of 309.]

In 1918, Henry Roscoe Bain registered for the World War I draft. Per his registration card, he was born 5 September 1877; resided on Reid Street, Wilson; farmed for M.H. Lam; and his nearest relative was Minnie Baines.

In the 1920 census of Wilson, Wilson County: on Reid Street, carpenter Roscoe H. Bains, 43; wife Minnie, 44; and children Charlie, 18, and Hattie, 16.

In the 1930 census of Wilson, Wilson County: on 309 Reid Street, carpenter Rosco Baines, 52; wife Minnie, 52; and Charley, 28, auto mechanic.

In the 1940 census of Wilson, Wilson County: at 309 Reid Street, owned and valued at $2800, Roscoe Baines, 62; wife Minnie, 62; widowed daughter Hattie Perry, 36, tobacco factory hanger; and widower Charlie Baines, 38, plasterer.

In the 1941 Hill’s Wilson, N.C., city directory: Baines H Roscoe (c; Minnie) carp h309 N Reid

In the 1947 Hill’s Wilson, N.C., city directory: Baines H Roscoe (c; Minnie) carp h309 N Reid

Wilson Daily Times, 20 May 1960.

Minnie Baines died 5 December 1963 at Mercy Hospital. Per her death certificate, she was born November 1877 in Wilson County to George Barnes and Annie [last name unknown]; resided at 309 North Reid Street; and was a widow. Informant was Hattie Evans, 309 N. Vick.

Wilson Daily Times, 29 May 1968.

Photograph by Lisa Y. Henderson, February 2019.

307 North Reid Street.

The forty-fifth in a series of posts highlighting buildings in East Wilson Historic District, a national historic district located in Wilson, North Carolina. As originally approved, the district encompasses 858 contributing buildings and two contributing structures in a historically African-American section of Wilson. (A significant number have since been lost.) The district was developed between about 1890 to 1940 and includes notable examples of Queen Anne, Bungalow/American Craftsman, and Shotgun-style architecture. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1988.

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As described in the nomination form for the East Wilson Historic District: “ca. 1913; 1 story; L-plan cottage with front-facing gable in side wing; cutaway bay; turned porch posts; perhaps built by carpenter John Reid.”

In the 1930 census of Wilson, Wilson County: 307 Reid Street, rented for $20/month, hospital orderly Henry A. Best, 38, wife Anney C., 40, laundress, and children Thelma, 13, Dubulte, 8, and Reatha, 6; and lodgers Leslie, 23, taxi driver, and Beulah Exam, 20.

In the 1930 Wilson, N.C., city directory: Best Henry A (c) (Annie C) orderly Carolina Genl Hosp Inc h 307 N Reid

In the 1940 census of Wilson, Wilson County: at 307 Reid Street, rented for $14/month, Joe McCoy, 40, barber at Barnes Barber Shop, and wife Mittie, 40, laundress; and, renting at $4/month, Willie Forbs, 22, truck driver for Boykin Grocery Company, wife Goldie, 21, cook, and son Jimmie, 3; daughter Erma G. McCoy, 16; and roomer Thomas Elton, 17.

In the 1941 Wilson, N.C., city directory: McCoy Jos (c; Mittie) barber John B Barnes h 307 N Reid.

In the 1947 Hill’s Wilson, N.C., city directory: Ricks John C (c; Ella) h 307 N Reid [This was actually Jonah Ricks.]

Ella Mae [sic] Ricks died 4 February 1956 at Mercy Hospital in Wilson. Per her death certificate, she was born 5 February 1885 in Nash County to Patrick Henry Bailey and Gatsey Finch; lived at 307 North Reid; and was widowed. Informant was Jonah Ricks, 307 North Reid. [Jonah Ricks, in fact, was her husband.]

Jonah Lewis Ricks died 22 April 1960 at Mercy Hospital, Wilson. Per his death certificate, he was born 24 March 1885 in Wilson County to Joseph Ricks and Nancy Jones; resided at 307 North Reid; and was a laborer. Fannie T. Reid, 307 North Reid, was informant. [For a photograph of Jonah Ricks seated on the porch of 307 North Reid, see here.]

Photograph by Lisa Y. Henderson, February 2017.

Views.

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View, Vick Street Houses, Wilson, North Carolina (1988).

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View, South Reid Street, Wilson, North Carolina (1988).

The top photo appears to depict the 300 block of South Vick Street and the bottom is probably the 200 block on South Reid Street, which runs parallel to Vick to the immediate east.

The Reid Street were demolished in the mid-1990s as part of the redevelopment project that created a new working-class neighborhood of affordable homes called Freeman Place. As shown on the Bing.com map below, almost all of the housing stock in the wedge between Nash and Hines Street was razed. The houses standing now were built in Phases I, II and III of the project. The 200 block of South Reid, however, remains empty.

freeman pl

The 300 block of South Vick, just across Hines Street from Freeman Place, is largely intact, and the shotgun houses circled above are those in the 1988 photograph. After several years of virtual abandonment, they have recently undergone extensive renovation.

Tim Buchman Photographs, 1988-1998 (MC00583), Preservation North Carolina, NCSU Libraries Rare & Unique Digital Collections.