Huntersville in North Carolina is filled with modern attractions, but it also has a wealth of historical sites. Discover the town’s rich heritage by visiting these historic landmarks:
- Rural Hill
4431 Neck Rd., Huntersville, NC
Here you’ll find the ruins of Rural Hill Mansion, built in 1780 and burned to the ground in 1878. It was once the residence of John Davidson, who served as a Justice of Peace and Mecklenburg County Delegate to North Carolina. It transitioned from being one of the biggest and most profitable plantations in the whole county to being a modest family farm in a span of two centuries.
The property was sold to the county after five generations of Davidson family ownership. Today it is a vibrant events venue with extensive indoor and outdoor amenities that make much of the farm’s rustic charm.
- Cedar Grove Plantation and Hugh Torrance House and Store
8231 Gilead Rd., Huntersville, NC
Cedar Grove is a magnificent plantation home built in 1831. The home had 5,000 square feet of living space and the exterior was made with handmade bricks that had been fired on site. It’s an architectural marvel that combines Greek Revival and Federal style elements. Its interior is just as remarkable as its façade – skilled craftsmanship is evident in the suspended winding staircase that can be found in the home’s center hall.
A direct descendant of Hugh Torrance, the plantation’s original owner, inherited Cedar Grove in 1948 and restored the home room by room, taking care to preserve original elements like the copper gutters. The home serves as a private residence to date.
Right across the plantation home’s garden plot you’ll find the Hugh Torrance House and Store, which Torrance and his son operated as a frontier trading post. The oldest part of the structure is a log cabin that used to have a stone chimney. A two-level Federal-style wing was added to the cabin later on. It has been restored and is open for public viewing.
- Historic Latta Plantation
5225 Sample Rd., Huntersville, NC
Watch re-enactments of the Civil War and World War II at the Historic Latta Plantation, and go on a guided tour of this marvelous historic site. The plantation itself spans 52 acres located within the 1,343-acre Latta Nature Preserve. It is surrounded by Mountain Island Lake and the Catawba River. James Latta, a Scottish-Irish immigrant who found success as a merchant, built his plantation home there in 1800.
There are 11 other outbuildings on the site that will give you a glimpse of daily life in North Carolina in the 1800s. Today it is used for entertainment and educational purposes, with school programs, camps, and special events taking place here throughout the year.
- Holly Bend
3701 Neck Rd., Huntersville, NC
Constructed between 1795 and 1800, Holly Bend served as the residence of Robert Davidson, the eldest son of John Davidson and a commissioner of the Catawba River. Named for the holly trees that populate the area, it is a two-story Federal-style home with a plain exterior, but with an exquisite interior that features intricate vernacular trim. The walls are adorned with delicate cornice moldings, baseboards, and chair rails.
The home was initially designed to face the direction of the river instead of the road, which was the norm among southern river plantations at a time when traveling by boat was far easier than traveling on land. It was included in the National Register of Historic Places in 1972.
For more information on Huntersville’s historic sites, visit the town’s official website.