Local Historic Sites
The Mecklenburg Historical Association has been actively involved in the restoration and operation of numerous historic sites across Mecklenburg County.
Hezekiah Alexander Home Site
The Charlotte Museum of History explores Charlotte-Mecklenburg’s rich history during the 18th, and 19th centuries and is home to the oldest surviving structure in Mecklenburg County, The Hezekiah Alexander House (circa 1774). Set on eight acres of grounds, The Museum is also home to the American Freedom Bell, the Backcountry Patriot Statue and historic gardens. it is open to the public. www.charlottemuseum.org
President James K. Polk State Historic Site
In the 1950s, having recognized the desirability of erecting a memorial to James K. Polk, 11th President of the United States, the MHA successfully encouraged the state to recreate his birthplace south of Pineville on Highway 521. As a state historic site, the complex of period log structures and visitor’s center is open to the public free of charge. www.nchistoricsites.org/polk
In the 1970s, the MHA initiated and participated in the restoration of one of the last remaining Catawba River plantation, built around 1800 by James Latta, an Ulster Scot merchant. Latta Place is 12 miles northwest of Charlotte at the end of Sample Road, just off of Beatties Ford Road and across from historic Hopewell Presbyterian Church. It is open to the public. www.lattaplantation.org
Originally part of a 919 acre plantation, Rosedale was built in 1815 by Archibald Frew, who was a merchant, postmaster and tax collector. The house was occupied from the 1830s by D. T. Caldwell and his family. Dr. Caldwell, in addition to his medical practice, ran the plantation with the support of 2 slave families consisting of about 20 people. The plantation remained in the family until 1985. Rosedale is one of the finest examples of Federal period architecture in North Carolina and is noted for its faux grained woodwork and the original French wallpaper that survives in three rooms.
Hugh Torance House and Store
In the 1980s, the MHA fostered the restoration of the oldest surviving store in Mecklenburg County and perhaps in North Carolina. The Hugh Torance House and Store is located on Gilead Road, two miles west of Huntersville (I-77, exit 23), only a few miles north of Latta Place. It is open to the public.
In 1992, the Mecklenburg Historical Association worked with the Charlotte city council to get the park at the “Square” (Trade and Tryon Streets) named for Charlotte’s founder Thomas Polk. The MHA also provided the text for the four plaques at the site.
Sitting on part of the hilltop that comprises the heart of Charlotte, just two blocks from the Square, is the city’s oldest cemetery. Old Settlers’ Cemetery is located on West Fifth Street, between Poplar and Church Streets.