The Ultimate Guide To Asheville and the Western North Carolina Mountains
The Ultimate Guide to Asheville & the Western North Carolina Mountains

The Online Version of the Best-selling Regional Guidebook

All about coral reefs and the oceans

 Main Street District

Prints and note cards of Hendersonville NC

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Hendersonville Historic Districts
Historic Flat Rock    Main Street    7th Avenue   Other Historic Sites


Hendersonville NC, pen and ink drawing by Lee James Pantas
To purchase a print of this drawing by author/artist Lee Pantas, visit Cherry Orchard Studio

This district will be presented in the form of a self-guided walking tour. The best place to start is to park at the Hendersonville and Flat Rock Area Visitors Information Center located at 201 South Main Street. From there your tour will take you up and back on Main Street. Allow about an hour for the stroll. Leaving the Visitors Center proceed north up Main Street. One block up on your left will be the Historic Henderson County Courthouse.

Historic Henderson County Courthouse, pen & ink drawing by Lee James PantasHistoric Henderson County Courthouse (NRHP) 113 North Main St.
    Built in 1905, the historic Henderson County Courthouse overlooks Main Street. Graced with a gold dome and a statue of Lady Justice, this imposing building was constructed by W.F. Edwards, father of A.V. Edwards, who served as Hendersonville’s mayor for 36 years. Neo-Classical Revival in style, this building replaced an earlier two-story stuccoed brick structure. The architect was Richard Sharp Smith and is Smith’s only structure in Hendersonville. The most notable feature of the courthouse is the gold domed three-stage cupola, which consists of a columned drum and domical roof, crowned by a statue of Lady Justice. This Lady Justice is thought to be the only one in the United States that does not wear a blindfold.
    Although its main function was as a courthouse, the graceful building served other purposes over the years. The main courtroom was used in the early 1900s for various purposes, including speeches by governors, and as a gathering place for church congregations. Although it no longer is Henderson County’s courthouse, it remains a dignified and majestic reminder of the past. The sophistication and grandeur reflect the past aspirations of a small county seat at a time when the economy was booming and whose population was beginning to soar. Farther up Main Street in the next block you will see the People’s National Bank Building on your left.

People's National Bank Building, Hendersonville NCPeople’s National Bank Building (NRHP) 227-231 North Main St.
This building, dating back to around 1910, is a two story Neo-Classical structure of cream colored brick and was built by W.F. Edwards. It has a recessed central entrance beneath entablature supported by Ionic columns, and storefronts to either side. The bank building was the earliest use of Neo-Classical style and reinforced concrete construction for a commercial building in Hendersonville. Continuing on up North Main Street to the end, look for the Maxwell Store Building on your left, which is now home to Mast General Store.

Maxwell Store Building, Hendersonville NCMaxwell Store Building (NRHP) 529 North Main St.
This building once housed a fancy grocery business run by Maxwell Brown, a longtime proprietor. It was built around 1910 and is a two-story pressed brick structure. Highlights are round and segmentally arched windows with fanlights. Turn around at this point and continue south on North Main. Turn left at 5th Avenue and look for the Hendersonville City Hall on your left.

Hendersonville City HallHendersonville City Hall (NRHP) 145 5th Ave. East
Built between 1926 and 1928, this Neo-Classical Revival building was designed by Erle Stilwell. A flight of stairs leads up to the main entrance which is under a tetrastyle portico, on which is inscribed ‘”Erected by the People, Dedicated to the Perpetuation of Civic Progress, Liberty and the Security of Public Honor.” This building reflects the prosperity of Hendersonville during the 1920s and the architectural refinement that Stilwell brought to the city. After viewing the City Hall, return to Main Street, and turn left. Proceed south on Main. The Ripley-Shepherd Building will be three blocks down on your left.

Ripley-Shepherd Building, Hendersonville NCRipley-Shepherd Building (NRHP) 218 North Main St.
This building is believed to be the second-oldest building on Main Street, one of several buildings built by Colonel Valentine Ripley and once known as the “Ripley Brick Store House.” It is said to have served as a district commissary under a Major Noe during the Civil War. Later it was also a post office for Hendersonville. Later still it was the home of Shepherd and Hart’s furniture store and undertaking business. Notable features are the high hip roof and bracketed eaves.

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