Historic Carson House
Backstory and Context
The original logs used to construct the Carson House came from the Walnut trees along nearby Buck Creeks. This helped contribute to its sturdy structure and is certainly one reason that the house is still standing today. When Jonathan Carson inherited the house, he added a unique style to the house. The Charleston Plantation styled houses influenced him, and so he added a two-story veranda and covered the logs in clapboard and Greek revival trim.
Three years after the house served as the courthouse of McDowell County during its creation in 1842, the Carson’s donated a portion of nearby land to found the permanent county seat of Marion. For almost a century, the Carson home served as a roadside inn and tavern and many believe that Davy Crockett and Andrew Jackson walked through its historic hallways. In addition to being owners of the magnificent house, many of the Carson’s were prominent members of society. Three of Colonel Carson’s sons served in the state legislature and one became the first Secretary of State for the Republic of Texas.
The Carson House now hosts several exhibits including one on African American history, titled “Remembering Slavery and the Emergence of African American Culture in the Up-County.” The Mary M. Greenlee Genealogical Research and History room provides many people with access to history found nowhere else. Today, the Carson House is a member of the National Register of Historic Places.