For the Residential Rehabilitation of the South Brick House, 112 East South Avenue, Wake Forest
Since its construction in 1835 the South Brick House has been a landmark in Wake Forest. So named for its 18-inch thick Flemish bond brick walls, the South Brick House stands at the south corner of the original Wake Forest College campus. The State Baptist Convention commissioned Hillsborough contractor John Berry, widely known for his fine brick structures, to build three buildings for the new college. This handsome Greek Revival dwelling is the only one that survives. The South Brick House is significant for its long association with the college and town, and as one of only two brick dwellings predating the Civil War to survive in Wake County. It also provides a tangible link to two regional architectural masters: Berry, and Raleigh architect William Henley Deitrick, who restored the columned front porch and updated the interior around 1960.
By the summer of 2007 the South Brick House had been empty and for sale for close to two years. Demolition of the home was a possibility since its large lot was suited for apartments or townhomes. Fortunately for the citizens and of Wake Forest, Jim and Alexis Cooke purchased the house in the fall of 2007. Jim, a native of Wake Forest, and his wife Alexis were excited to become stewards of one of Wake Forest’s oldest and most historic homes. The Cooke’s immediately began extensive structural repairs and systems upgrades. Once these urgent issues had been addressed the Cooke’s began rehabilitating the interior, working diligently with their contractor, the late Larry Hendrix, to preserve and reuse existing materials. The team carefully restored original plaster walls and ceilings. Window panes, moldings, and floor boards were replaced, where necessary, with historic materials stored on site.
To make the house practical for modern living a second-story rear addition was built. Michael Booth designed the addition containing two bathrooms, a laundry room, and a rear stair. Brick was left exposed at the top of the rear stair to highlight the original exterior of the house, clearly delineating the old and new. Heart pine flooring found in the barn was installed in the addition. The rear porch was re-built reusing the original posts, balusters, and decorative brackets. In one short year, the South Brick House was transformed from a time-worn structure into a comfortable, modernized family home that maintains its historic integrity.
The Board of Directors of Capital Area Preservation, Inc. is pleased to present a 2010 Anthemion Award to Jim & Alexis Cooke; Booth Studio; and the late Larry Hendrix. for the Residential Rehabilitation of the South Brick House, 112 East South Avenue, Wake Forest.