Historic Tisdale House will soon move to make way for new Stanley White Recreation Center

Rhem Avenue property where the Tisdale House will be located. Photo by Wendy Card.
Rhem Avenue property where the Tisdale House will be located. Photo by Wendy Card.

New owner of the Tisdale House, Daniel Tower, is excited to announce the move could happen as early as May 6. If all goes as planned, the house will be moved less than a quarter of a mile away, from 1312 Broad St. to 1311 Rhem Ave. in New Bern.

Tower has been working on plans with numerous entities to move the house currently located where the new Stanley White Recreation Center will be constructed. He said the process will involve a lot of people including New Bern Police, Fire, Utilities, Public Works, NCDOT to name a few.

Instead of demolishing it because of its historic value, the New Bern Board of Aldermen offered the house to the public for free and applications were reviewed by the New Bern Preservation Foundation, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit.

The Rhem Avenue property’s fair market value was $43,000. It’s unknown when the board voted to package the Tisdale House and Rhem Avenue properties, but the Craven County property records reflect the NBPF sold the properties to Tower on January 23 for $55,000.

The board originally directed that the house be moved by February 15. Bids for construction on the new recreation center are open until April 25.

Tisdale House located on Broad Street in New Bern, N.C. Photo by Wendy Card.

The process would have taken much longer if Tower had to obtain certificates of appropriateness for the Tisdale House if it was located within the Historic New Bern or Historic Riverside Districts. If that was the case, the owner would have to go through the historic preservation commission “before making significant changes or additions to a property, before beginning new construction, or before demolishing or relocating a property”, per the State Historic Preservation Office.

Tower said the porches will be removed prior to the move. The new foundation is being constructed and after receiving a permit, a large oak tree was removed from the southwest corner of the property. He said it was necessary to cut the tree down because it posed a threat to the house. A small crepe myrtle will be removed and replanted in order to relocate the house.

Tower expressed his excitement saying it will be a historic, monumental move. “I’ll be relieved when it’s over with. I’m trying to make sure everything is covered.”

By Wendy Card, co-editor. Send us an email with questions or comments.