For 115 years, the Grimsley-Fry House has been perched up on a hill facing a park in the small city of Greensboro, North Carolina. The local landmark, in the Neoclassical Revival style, was built in 1907, and has had only three owners since. As expected, then, many of its Neoclassical Revival features, such as the Ionic columns on the porch, the formal and symmetrical entrance (the door flanked by sidelights and a transom), the bay window, and use of louvered shutters both inside and out, have been retained.
The style grew out of America’s centennial in 1876. Classical architecture designed around the founding of the nation became extremely popular. The Columbian Exposition of 1893, held in Chicago, also featured Neoclassical architecture, so it’s unsurprising that architect Richard Gambier employed this stately style when designing a home for a local family.
Cynthia and George Grimsley were the first owners; George was superintendent of schools in Greensboro and also president of an insurance company. The second owners were Fanny and Fielding Fry. Fry was not only the founder of a bank but also the 30th mayor of Greensboro.
Besides the plethora of Neoclassical details, the house also includes stonework made from local granite, quartersawn oak trim, and both classical and French style mantels. Tall ceilings, original lead-beveled glass windows, five antique fireplaces, and an attic with cedar closets and chests are some of the other special features.
With about 3,600 square feet of space, there is plenty of room for any activity. The first floor boasts two parlors, a formal dining room, a powder room, and a large eat-in kitchen; while upstairs are four bedrooms, an office, and two bathrooms. Sited near the center of town, Greensboro’s restaurants and shops are just a short walk away
Asking $1.295 million, the Grimsley-Fry House is listed by Randy Carson of Allen Tate Realtors.