The Daily Southerner, Tarboro, NC

Local News

January 18, 2008

Free house – but move it

Fist Baptist Church needs the land for expansion

Tarboro is well-known for its abundance of historic homes and its residents’ ability to restore and preserve them. For those interested in painting, replacing and fixing, a historic house in downtown is up for grabs and it’s free.

There’s just one catch – the owner must move it.

The Hagans House, named after its previous owners, was purchased by the First Baptist Church of Tarboro in January of 1989.

Following the flood from Hurricane Floyd in 1999, the church used the house, at 114 St. John St., to serve as the headquarters for the North Carolina Baptist Men’s Association as they organized flood relief efforts.

In the last several years, the church has used the house as a “Youth House” to allow for Sunday school and fellowship for the younger congregation members.

As the congregation reaches approximately 650 members and is projected to have a continued increase, the First Baptist Church needs the space where the house sits.

“This is a part of our future planning for the church. We need more space badly, and once the house is removed we will use the space for constructing a multistory building,” said Lilli Thomas, a member of the Facilities Planning Committee. “The growth of the church demands more space.”

“We decided to allow for the removal of the building because of the nature of what it is, where it is and for the love of the historic district,” said Thomas.

“I have a deep desire to save all of Tarboro that we can. It is such a nice house and it would be great to keep, but we need more space. Rather than tear it down, I asked for permission to give it away,” she added.

The house, worth approximately $150,000 to $200,000 without the land included, was built at the turn of the century. The two-story Hagans House has 3,200 square feet with a total of 10 rooms.

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