Endangered Properties Our Projects Preservation Vincent Allen Project

Saving Allen House: Volunteers needed.

June 19, 2018

There have only been a few properties that I have felt passionate about. The Vincent Allen house in Vance County, North Carolina has definitely taken over my top spot. I believe part of the reason is the man I have met, Mr. Amato. I feel like I need to protect his interests, his investment, make sure he doesn’t get taken advantage of. Not kidding, but when I think of someone taking advantage of him, I get very choked up. Not sure exactly what it is, but I think he definitely met me for a reason. Fate stepped in on this one. He truly is a very sweet man, has a hard time getting around, yet looks after me and my well being. And we’ve only known each other since March. 🙂

Why should this house be saved? It has a build date of 1790. We are questioning that a bit with the main house. But for me, the summer kitchen out front is definitely older than the main house. We aren’t entirely sure it was a summer kitchen to start with. It had plastered walls, which means it was a significant building. The two fireplaces in it are almost large enough for me to walk inside.

The house was the Vincent Allen House. Vincent fought in the Revolutionary War under his father. Vincent was married to Mary Bowdoin. (I’ve seen multiple spellings for her name) Her great grandfather, or some relation like that, was Thomas Jefferson. She is buried in the side yard along with Vincent.

Vincent’s father was Captain Charles Allen. He fought in the Revolutionary War and the French Indian war. During the Revolutionary War, George Washington was having a hard time traversing the North Carolina swamps and forests. He requested help from someone that knew North Carolina. Captain Allen was summoned to help George Washington. In genealogy records it is stated that they became fast friends and Captain Allen helped George Washington form our nation. I saw Captain Allen’s grave a few weeks ago. He is 1/2 mile from the Allen House.

We believe to see this house continue to crumble would be a huge travesty for not only Vance County history, but also for NC History and our nation’s history. Amazing to me that a relative of Thomas Jefferson is buried in a side yard, and I tripped down in her grave a few months ago.

What is happening next. We are looking four weeks out for a big clean up day, inside and outside the house. We need lots of volunteers! I think we are looking at Saturday, July 21st. This will be an opportunity for everyone to be able to get their hands dirty and help save a house!! This will be a HUGE undertaking. But one I feel is so worth it. Whenever I talk about volunteers to Mr. Amato, he gets teared up and feels incredulous that anyone would want to help. He entrusted that house to a lady that promised to fix it up. Unfortunately, he did not have it put in the deed. He spent many nights crying thinking about the house. His wife was an Allen descendant. So let’s show him how a community can pull together!!

What will we need. Lots of weed eaters, chainsaws, hands, and more hands. If anyone knows of a landscape company that would be willing to donate services, they will get a sign placed on the property. I will also be doing a big post promoting any company that donates anything to this cause. We will need two crews, an inside crew and an outside crew. So let’s start spreading this post around and get some volunteers!!!

If you wish to volunteer, private message me on Facebook, or email me through my website. One disclaimer, we cannot have anyone under 18 on the property. It is not safe. I haven’t had my kids out there and I won’t for some time to come. All volunteers will need to sign a waiver. Don’t wait to let me know about volunteering. At some point I will have to cap it just for safety reasons inside the house.