Solomon Robson, a Pitt County carpenter, received a grant for a 100 acres of land north of the Tar River in the Grindal Creek area in the mid-eighteenth century. He built a one-room, one-and-a-half-story frame structure on this land c. 1742. He deeded the property to his son, William, in 1767.
William Robson served as a Pitt County delegate to the Provincial Congress in April 1776 (Halifax Resolves). He also served as an officer in the militia. William reportedly owned a store at the Grindal Creek Crossing. The British plundered the store during Cornwallis’ march to Yorktown.
William’s daughter sold the house to Rueben Moore in 1806. In 1846 the Moore family sold the home to William and Mary Whichard. Their daughter, William (presumably named for her father), married John Taylor.
The home remained in the family until 1986 when the Hemingway Family (descendants of the Taylor Family) enlisted the help of Preservation NC to preserve and sell the structure. Preservation NC identifies at-risk historic properties and resells them to buyers who are willing to rehabilitate them.
Preservation NC reported that the Robeson – Whichard - Taylor house was determined to be the third oldest structure in the state of North Carolina. Dendrochronology dated the structure to approximately 1742. Built by Pitt County carpenter Solomon Robson, it represents a typical style of architecture constructed by the average farmer during the eighteenth century.
The property that the Robeson - Whichard - Taylor House was located on was slated for development. The Hemingway family, with the help of Preservation NC, moved the house to a nearby tract of land, also owned by the family and began to seek a permanent owner.
In June 1997, a local group of historians organized the Robeson House Preservation Association. The group planned to purchase the house and relocate it to a plot of land in Pitt County that belonged to the original Solomon Robson land grant. The Robeson House Preservation Association planned to develop a museum complex to educate the public on early architecture and the history of Pitt County. The North Carolina Museum of History became interested in acquiring the structure. In 1997 the Hemingway family donated the house to the North Carolina Museum of History. In March 1998, the house was moved to the Goldsboro-Wayne Municipal Airport for storage. In 2010, the house was moved to Raleigh and reassembled inside the museum. It was opened for exhibit of April 16, 2011.
Power, Scott, and Sarah Boat. The Historic Architecture of Pitt County, North Carolina. Greenville, N.C.: Pitt County Historical Society, 1991.
Object Text. Robson-Whichard-Taylor House. H.1998.79.1. The Story of North Carolina. North Carolina Museum of History. 2011.
“Robson-Nelson-Lewellyn Family in Revolution.” Pitt County Genealogical Quarterly: PCGQ. Pitt County Family Researchers, February 2012. 3.
North Carolina. Pitt County. 1900 U.S. Census, Population Schedule. Digital images. Ancestry.com. http://www.ancestry.com : 2016.
See additional collections:
Davis Lee McWhorter Papers (#230), East Carolina Manuscript Collection, J. Y. Joyner Library, East Carolina University, Greenville, North Carolina, USA.
John Gideon Taylor Family Papers (#441), East Carolina Manuscript Collection, J. Y. Joyner Library, East Carolina University, Greenville, North Carolina, USA.
John Clayton Taylor Papers (#442), East Carolina Manuscript Collection, J. Y. Joyner Library, East Carolina University, Greenville, North Carolina, USA.