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Haywood Hall, constructed in 1800-1801, is Raleigh’s oldest building that remains on its original foundation. The house was built for state treasurer John Haywood and his second wife Eliza Williams, niece of Governor Benjamin Williams. Its design resembles John Haywood’s home from childhood in Edgecombe County. Haywood, born in 1754, began his legislative work at age twenty-seven as clerk of the North Carolina Senate. He was appointed state treasurer in 1787, a position he would hold for the next forty years.
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As a member of the Council of State, Haywood was required to purchase land in Raleigh, the state’s new permanent capital. He served as the first “intendent of police” or mayor of the city. Haywood served on the original board of trustees for the University of North Carolina. He helped found Christ Church in Raleigh and served as one of its vestrymen. Haywood died in 1827.
The structure at 211 New Bern Avenue, an outstanding example of Federal architecture, was a well known place to congregate for the legislators and dignitaries of the first quarter of the nineteenth century. The building has undergone very little renovation over the years. The house remained in the family until 1977 when it was donated to the National Society of the Colonial Dames of America in the State of North Carolina, which opened the house to the public. Outbuildings on the property include a smokehouse, kitchen, and gardener’s shed.
Linda Mackie Griggs, “Haywood Hall” (unpublished historical research, 3 volumes, North Carolina Division of Archives and History and National Society of Colonial Dames of America in the State of North Carolina, 1984)
Walter M. Stearns, Haywood Hall (1948)
Elizabeth Reid Murray, Wake: Capital County of North Carolina (1983)
Catherine W. Bishir and Michael T. Southern, A Guide to the Historic Architecture of Piedmont North Carolina (2003)
Haywood Hall website: http://www.haywoodhall.org