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This beautiful stone Tudor Revival home has the distinction of always being owned by the same family. Built for Frank Smoot Easley, this 1919 Alex Mahood design has been known as “The Breezes,” because there is always a breeze, thanks to the many angles of the design. Mr. Easley was president of Bluefield’s Coal and Coke Company. He was also an active member of the West Virginia Turnpike Commission. The bridge that extends from Cherry Street to Bluefield State University was named for Frank S. Easley.

A beautiful bird is associated with this historic property. At one time, more than 25 peacocks roamed the property. The stone for the first two floors was extracted from the site of Bluefield University, before the campus had been established. Italian stone masons from McDowell County hauled 90 wagonloads of stone as they built one of the grandest homes on College Avenue. The stone for the third floor came from the hillside behind the house.

The story is told that Mrs. Frank Easley’s father, Walker Wilson Tyler, saw an auction listing in the New York Times for furniture for sale, imported from England. Easley purchased the collection and had it shipped to Lynchburg for his new wife, Ellen Rucker Tyler. The beautiful furniture was later given to Frank and Elizabeth Easley and brought to Bluefield.

The house has five bedrooms, seven bathrooms, and several closets that “put every angle to use.” For four generations, the Easley family has always had a long association with Bluefield College, now Bluefield University. The campus library is named The Easley Library.


The Easley House in Bluefield, WV

The Easley House in Bluefield, WV

Building, Plant, Window, House

  Despite some additions and renovations to the property in 1970, the Easley House in Bluefield, WV remains an excellent example of Tudor Revival architecture. Also known as "The Breezes," the home was designed by architect Alex Mahood in 1919 and construction was completed by 1922. Mahood himself was a significant figure in the development of Bluefield. He was already a prominent figure in the state by the time he moved to the city in 1912. The West Virginia Hotel is another of his more notable projects. Born in Virginia, Mahood went on to study in Paris where he would have largely learned Renaissance and Classical Revival styles. The Easley home is a unique example of Mahood's work as he did not frequently design homes in the Tudor Revival style. 

  At the time of the home's construction, Bluefield was in the midst of a development boom. This growth was spurred in part by Mahood's work and an economic upturn in the area. The neighborhood in which the Easley home was built was one of the fastest growing areas at the time. A country club was also being developed nearby and is indicative of the wealthy residents who were moving to southern Bluefield. The home was one of many lavish structures to be built at the time. 

  The Easley family was headed by the wealthy Frank Smoot Easley. The Easley family moved to the area in the late 1800s when Frank still lived with his parents. He was a graduate of the WV State Normal School in what is now Concord. After finished school, Easley spent many years working as a manager for the American Smelting and Refining Co. and later Pocahontas Fuel Co.'s coke department. Relocating to Bluefield, Easley took a management position in Bluefield Coal and Coke Co. and eventually became president of the company. Easley was a well-known contributor to the Bluefield community. He served on committees for a variety of groups including Bluefield College, the Chamber of Commerce, Rotary Club, Country Club, and several transportation committees. Like Mahood, Easley was also involved in the regions developmental boom and helped bring to life the West Virginia Hotel and Bluefield College. 

  The Easley home was built for Easley and his family after he had obtained his fortune. The home was nominated to the National Register of Historic Places in 1991. Over the years, the home has remained the property of the Easley family. The Easley Bridge on US Route 52 is also named for Frank Easley. 

Gioulis, Michael. Easley House National Register of Historic Places Nomination Form. WV Department of Arts, Culture, and History. http://www.wvculture.org/shpo/nr/pdf/mercer/92000879.pdf.

Take Our Driving Tour. Bluefield Historical Society. July 16, 2015. Accessed May 01, 2019. https://www.bluefieldhistoricalsociety.org/tour2.htm.