1408 Fayetteville Street – John Morton House

35.979995, -78.900008

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Local historic district
National Register
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Photograph by Heather Slane (hmwPreservation) - December 2009.  

Below, in italics, from the Stokesdale National Register Historic District nomination:

This one-story, hip-roofed house is three bays wide and single-pile with a two-room, gabled rear ell on the northwest corner and a shed-roof addition beyond the ell. The house has a brick pier foundation with concrete-block curtain wall, plain wood weatherboards, and an interior, corbelled brick chimney. It has two front doors, both boarded over, and two-over-two, double-hung horizontal-pane wood sash windows throughout. A hip-roofed dormer centered on the façade has a pair of single-pane windows. The shed-roofed front porch is supported by tapered posts on brick piers; it is accessed by a granite stair. The earliest known occupant is John Morton in 1920; Morton appears to have run an “eating house” out of this location. County tax records confirm a 1920 construction date.

The structure appears to have been used for this commercial purpose for only a few of its earliest years.  In addition to Morton, men named Iredell Williams and James Adams are listed as eating house proprietors here before it seems to have been converted to rental residential use in the second half of the 1920s.  Names listed at this address for city directories for corresponding years (with listed profession in parentheses) include:

1927, 1930 - Nathalie and Robert Dixon (tobacco worker)

1935 - Victoria and Radar Cohen (auto mechanic)

1940 - Victoria Cohen

1950 - Mary S. Justice (maid, E. K. Powe School)

1960 - Mary C. and Robert G. Thomas (barber, New Deal Barber Shop); A. Marie Faulk (public school teacher)

We know from other sources that Ms. Faulk taught at the Lyon Park School for nearly forty years.  She was also a longtime member and Sunday School superintendant at St. Joseph AME Church.  Still living here at 1408 Fayetteville Street in her long retirement, Ms. Faulk celebrated her 100th birthday in 2005.  She passed away the following year.

Durham County Tax Administration photo, September 2017.  

In early December 2021, the Durham Fire Department reported a major blaze had broken out on the 1400 block of Fayetteville Street, with 58 fire fighters responding to 2:30am call.

Looking south down the east side of Fayetteville Street, with the fire engine and trees obscuring 1408 Fayetteville, apparently the source of the smoke. (Photo by Durham Fire Department Assistant Chief Brian Eaton, posted to DFD Facebook.) A portion of the neighboring Scarborough House is visible at the right edge, and it may also have sustained some damage in the fire.  

While there were fortunately no reported occupants or injuries, it does appear the fire caused catastrophic damage to the structure.

1.20.2022 (N. Levy)


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