Preservation Durham To Host "Hidden Durham Tour" of Historic McPherson Hospital
Attendees will get a special look inside the old, former hospital on Main Street.
October 7, 2013 (Durham, NC) -- The circa 1926 McPherson Hospital on West Main Street will be the site for Preservation Durham’s “Hidden Durham Tour” on Tuesday, October 15, beginning at 5 p.m. with tours every half hour until 7 p.m.
In the mid-1920s, Dr. Samuel D. McPherson built the historic eye, ear, nose and throat hospital, designed by architect Frank Milburn of the prolific Durham firm Milburn & Heister, between the 1906 Sweaney House and the former Beverly Apartments. A Georgian-style masonry structure, the hospital is adjacent to Durham’s Trinity Park historic district.
The original hospital was modified in the 1940s. In 1968 the Sweaney House was converted to hospital use. Another addition was built in 1969. The 1940s and 1960s additions have since been demolished.
McPherson Hospital eventually became North Carolina Eye and Ear Hospital and moved in stages to Independence Park near Durham Regional Hospital in north Durham.
Preservation Durham sponsors “Hidden Durham Tours” of special Durham places periodically throughout the year -- “places you don’t ordinarily get to see,” says Wendy Hillis, executive director of the non-profit organization, “such as these renovation projects, previews of new spaces about to open, and cool historic spots you didn’t even know were there.”
“Hidden Durham Tours” are open to Preservation Durham members only, but attendees may join online at http://preservationdurham.org/support-us/become-a-member/, by calling (919) 682-3036, and even at the door on the day of the tour. Hillis notes that these tours fill up quickly, so she cautions against waiting. These events are one-time only tours that Preservation Durham has arranged by special permission and they may have limited attendance. Attendees may also be required to wear hard hats.
For more information on “Hidden Durham Tours” and other Preservation Durham events, visit www.preservationdurham.org.
About Preservation Durham:
Preservation Durham is a non-profit membership organization dedicated to preserving Durham’s architectural heritage. The organization was founded in 1974, originally as the Historic Preservation Society of Durham. Preservation Durham has worked to establish historic districts in Durham that provide tax credits for homeowners of historic houses. Preservation Durham ’s Endangered Properties Fund helps buyers and sellers of historic properties protect them with preservation covenants. Its Renovators Network provides information and expertise to homeowners and other renovators. For more information visit www.preservationdurham.org.