Where in Carolina Country is This?

October 2012
October 2012

A good number of you from various places in the state recognized the photo of a collapsing building in Sampson County, sent to us by John and Bonnie Diebert of Morehead City. It's at the intersection of US 13 (Fayetteville-Newton Grove Highway) and Hollerin' Road just west of Spivey's Corner. The winning entry, chosen at random from all correct submissions, was from Angela Futrell of Mt. Olive, a member of Tri-County EMC.

Who would have thought that the sight of a falling-down old building would inspire not one, but two people to write poems about it? The building is shown in our October magazine, the subject of the "Where Is This?" contest. Donnie Spell of Dunn told us "It was a store run by the owner, Pernon Jackson, until he died in 1956. It had previously been run by Pernon's father, Willie Jackson, who died in 1947. It was moved farther away from the highway in the 1990s."Various storms and old age have caused the building to lean a little more each year since then. Johnnie Maretta Vaughn of Fayetteville and D. Leigh Sumner of Newton Grove each sent us poems they have written about this building. Here they are.

where-2012-10-02"It must have known that it would make its last stand in the Carolina Country," said Linda Jackson by phone a few days after the building collapsed onto itself on Oct. 18, 2012. Amy Rhodes sent us this picture of the building the day after it came down.

Linda Jackson told us that "Mr. Willie" Jackson built the store in the late 1800s or early 1900s from timber he cut from his farm. "The wood inside is fantastic," she said. She should know: she spent some years inside finishing furniture after the building outlived its usefulness as a store. "He built it to have provisions for the people who lived around here and who couldn't get to town very easily," Ms. Jackson said.

Soon after Mr. Willie died in 1947, at a time when people could more easily drive to town, the store was converted to a dwelling for Jackson Farm workers. His son Pernon ran the farm then. Later it was used for storage and for Linda Jackson's furniture-stripping activities. Mr. Willie's grandson, the late Richard Jackson, was Linda's husband, and their son, Richard Jackson Jr., owns the former store now.