North Carolina Architects and Builders - A Biographical Dictionary

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Rogers, Willard G. (1863?-1947)

Birthplace: Cincinnati, Ohio, USA
Residences:
  • Charlotte
Trades:
  • Architect
NC Work Locations:
  • Concord, Cabarrus County
  • Cabarrus
  • Mount Pleasant, Cabarrus County
  • Cabarrus
  • Lenoir, Caldwell County
  • Caldwell
  • Newton, Catawba County
  • Catawba
  • Shelby, Cleveland County
  • Cleveland
  • Fayetteville, Cumberland County
  • Cumberland
  • Durham, Durham County
  • Durham
  • Belmont, Gaston County
  • Gaston
  • Cherryville, Gaston County
  • Gaston
  • Gastonia, Gaston County
  • Gaston
  • Greensboro, Guilford County
  • Guilford
  • Kinston, Lenoir County
  • Lenoir
  • Charlotte, Mecklenburg County
  • Mecklenburg
  • Aberdeen, Moore County
  • Moore
  • Chapel Hill, Orange County
  • Orange
  • Greenville, Pitt County
  • Pitt
  • Union County
  • Union
  • Raleigh, Wake County
  • Wake
Building Types:
  • Educational;
  • Fraternal;
  • Industrial;
  • Public;
  • Religious;
  • Residential
Styles & Forms:
  • Egyptian Revival;
  • Mission;
  • Renaissance Revival

Four Acres [Durham]

View larger image and credits

Four Acres [Durham]

Biography

Willard G. Rogers (1863?-1947), a native of Cincinnati, practiced architecture in Charlotte, N. C. for many years, for a time as a partner in Hook and Sawyer with Charles Christian Hook and then on his own.

Relatively little is known of Willard G. Rogers's early life. According to a biographical dictionary of Cincinnati architects he was the son of architect Solomon Willard Rogers and grandson of the famed Massachusetts and Ohio architect Isaiah Rogers. Willard presumably learned his profession from his father.

Solomon Willard Rogers and his family moved about during Willard's youth. The United States Census of 1880 showed Willard G. Rogers, aged 18, in Tate, Ohio, the son of Solomon W. and Susan Rogers; Solomon was identified as a native of Connecticut and a farmer. The family moved to Atlanta, where city directories show them in the early 1890s. In 1900 Solomon Rogers was living in Mississippi, identified as an architect from Connecticut, working as an architect, and living at a boarding house. The rest of the family may have stayed in Georgia; in 1900, Solomon W. Rogers, architect from Massachusetts, aged 71 and his wife Susan Rogers, aged 66, were living in Edgewood, DeKalb, Georgia. The 1910 census, which recorded Willard G. Rogers as an architect in Charlotte, put his birth year at about 1866 and his father's birthplace as Massachusetts.

Around 1900 Willard G. Rogers and his wife Eva, a native of Kentucky, moved to Charlotte, where he soon affiliated with the growing city's leading figures. He worked initially as an architect for the engineering firm of Stuart W. Cramer. In 1905, he joined architect Charles Christian Hook in the architectural firm of Hook and Rogers. Hook and Rogers's practice, which continued until 1916, covered a broad area and included a wide range of building types and styles including many college projects.

Rogers was active in professional organizations. In 1912 he served as president of the North Carolina Architectural Association, of which William H. Lord of Asheville was vice-president and Franklin Gordon of Charlotte was secretary-treasurer. He was also a Scottish Rite Mason as early as 1913. Mrs. Rogers's social activities and travels were frequently noted in the pages of the Charlotte newspapers.

After Rogers's partnership with Hook ended, he went on to practice on his own. Beginning in 1916, he frequently advertised his services as a "registered architect" with his office at 502 Trust Building in Charlotte newspapers. In 1921, he advertised that he had an office in Charlotte and another in Kinston, North Carolina, where Liston L. Mallard was the manager, thus enabling the firm to accomplish projects in eastern North Carolina.

Rogers's work on his own encompassed a variety of building types, especially in the western Piedmont. Several were among the most prominent in their communities at the time, including courthouses and leading banks. Rogers appeared regularly in Charlotte city directories as an architect, and in 1940, the United States Census recorded Rogers, an architect aged 71, and his wife Eva, aged 62, still residing in Charlotte. Shortly after this, he moved to Atlanta, where he died on November 28, 1947, aged 83.

Author: Catherine W. Bishir.

Published 2016

Building List

Spencer Hall (Greensboro, Guilford County)

Guilford Greensboro

1904

Variant Name(s):
  • New Dormitory
Contributors:
Dates: 1904;1907
Location: Greensboro, Guilford County
Street Address: University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Greensboro, NC
Status: Standing
Type:
  • Educational
Images Published In:
  • Marvin A. Brown, Greensboro: An Architectural Record (1995).
Note:

Spencer Hall is the principal surviving building by Hook and Sawyer at present University of North Carolina Greensboro (the State Normal and Industrial College), where Hook also planned other buildings including an auditorium, a library, and other dormitories. When completed it was described as largest women's dormitory in the country under one roof. The Julius Isaac Foust Papers at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro University Archives and Manuscripts includes correspondence with the firm of Hook and Rogers (1910s) and Thomas Sears (1920s) about campus buildings and landscaping.

Spencer Hall

D. L. Bost House (Concord, Cabarrus County)

Cabarrus Concord

1905

Contributors:
Dates: 1905
Location: Concord, Cabarrus County
Street Address: 154 S. Union St., Concord, NC
Status: Standing
Type:
  • Residential
Images Published In:
  • Peter R. Kaplan, The Historic Architecture of Cabarrus County, North Carolina (2004).

Misenheimer-James House (Mount Pleasant, Cabarrus County)

Cabarrus Mount Pleasant

1800

Contributors:
Dates: Late 19th century; 1915 [remodeled]
Location: Mount Pleasant, Cabarrus County
Street Address: 311 S. Main St., Mount Pleasant, NC
Status: Standing
Type:
  • Residential
Images Published In:
  • Peter R. Kaplan, The Historic Architecture of Cabarrus County, North Carolina (2004).
Note:

The eclectic house and its outbuildings constitute the principal ensemble of fine stonework by Robert Franklin Lynn, in this case in an architect-designed house built for a leading white citizen. The complex began with a simpler house built for J. J. Misenhimer, but it was greatly altered as the residence of industrialist Augustus N. James who moved to Mount Pleasant from Charlotte. He employed the Charlotte architectural firm of Hook and Rogers to redesign the house in a combination of Craftsman and Colonial Revival modes. Its special character derives from the abundant use of Lynn's stonework for the foundation, porches, outbuildings, and a retaining wall as well as a fireplace.

Lenoir Building (Lenoir, Caldwell County)

Caldwell Lenoir

1908

Contributors:
Dates: Ca. 1908
Location: Lenoir, Caldwell County
Street Address: 808 West Ave., Lenoir, NC
Status: Standing
Type:
  • Commercial
Images Published In:
  • Catherine W. Bishir, Michael T. Southern, and Jennifer F. Martin, A Guide to the Historic Architecture of Western North Carolina (1999).

Lenoir Building

East Duke Building (Durham, Durham County)

Durham Durham

1910

Contributors:
Dates: Ca. 1910
Location: Durham, Durham County
Street Address: Duke University, Durham, NC
Status: Standing
Type:
  • Educational
Images Published In:
  • Claudia P. Roberts (Brown) and Diane E. Lea, The Durham Architectural and Historic Inventory (1982).
Note:

The East Duke Building is the right, tan-colored building pictured in the bottom right corner of the image.

East Duke Building

West Duke Building (Durham, Durham County)

Durham Durham

1910

Contributors:
Dates: Ca. 1910
Location: Durham, Durham County
Street Address: Duke University, Durham, NC
Status: Standing
Type:
  • Educational
Images Published In:
  • Claudia P. Roberts (Brown) and Diane E. Lea, The Durham Architectural and Historic Inventory (1982).
Note:

The West Duke Building is the left, tan-colored building pictured in the bottom right corner of the image.

West Duke Building

Four Acres (Durham, Durham County)

Durham Durham

1908

Variant Name(s):
  • Benjamin N. Duke House
Contributors:
Dates: 1908
Location: Durham, Durham County
Street Address: Chapel Hill St. at Duke St., Durham, NC
Status: No longer standing
Type:
  • Residential
Images Published In:
  • Joel A. Kostyu and Frank A. Kostyu, Durham: A Pictorial History (1978).
Note:

The immense residence called Four Acres was built for tobacco industrialist Benjamin N. Duke on the site of his previous residence. The North Carolina Mutual Insurance building now occupies the elevated, prominent site.

Four Acres

Greystone (Durham, Durham County)

Durham Durham

1911

Variant Name(s):
  • James F. Stagg House
Contributors:
Dates: 1911
Location: Durham, Durham County
Street Address: 618 Morehead Ave., Durham, NC
Status: Standing
Type:
  • Residential
Images Published In:
  • Joel A. Kostyu and Frank A. Kostyu, Durham: A Pictorial History (1978).
  • Claudia P. Roberts (Brown) and Diane E. Lea, The Durham Architectural and Historic Inventory (1982).
Note:

Built for an associate of the Duke family, Greystone is one of the few examples surviving of Durham's pre-1920 mansions.

Abel Caleb Lineberger Sr. House I (Belmont, Gaston County)

Gaston Belmont

1910

Contributors:
Dates: 1910
Location: Belmont, Gaston County
Street Address: 203 N. Main St., Belmont, NC
Status: Standing
Type:
  • Residential
Images Published In:
  • Kim Withers Brengle, The Architectural Heritage of Gaston County, North Carolina (1982).

Piedmont and Northern Railway Depot (Belmont, Gaston County)

Gaston Belmont

1915

Contributors:
Dates: 1915
Location: Belmont, Gaston County
Street Address: 4 N. Main St., Belmont, NC
Status: Standing
Type:
  • Transportation
Images Published In:
  • Catherine W. Bishir and Michael T. Southern, A Guide to the Historic Architecture of Piedmont North Carolina (2003).
  • Kim Withers Brengle, The Architectural Heritage of Gaston County, North Carolina (1982).

Piedmont and Northern Railway Depot

John Love Buildings (Gastonia, Gaston County)

Gaston Gastonia

1904

Contributors:
Dates: 1904; ca. 1906-1908
Location: Gastonia, Gaston County
Street Address: 213-223 W. Main Ave., Gastonia, NC
Status: Standing
Type:
  • Commercial
Images Published In:
  • Kim Withers Brengle, The Architectural Heritage of Gaston County, North Carolina (1982).
Note:

In 1899 and 1906 the Manufacturers' Record carried news of Hook's firms designing office buildings for John Love, which may be these.

Cole Manufacturing Plant (Charlotte, Mecklenburg County)

Mecklenburg Charlotte

1909

Contributors:
Dates: 1909-1911
Location: Charlotte, Mecklenburg County
Street Address: Charlotte, NC
Status: Standing
Type:
  • Industrial

YWCA Building (Charlotte, Mecklenburg County)

Mecklenburg Charlotte

1912

Contributors:
Dates: 1912-1914
Location: Charlotte, Mecklenburg County
Street Address: 418 E. Trade St., Charlotte, NC
Status: No longer standing
Type:
  • Recreational
Images Published In:
  • Mary Norton Kratt and Mary Manning Boyer, Remembering Charlotte: Postcards from a New South City, 1905-1950 (2000).

YWCA Building

VanLandingham House (Charlotte, Mecklenburg County)

Mecklenburg Charlotte

1913

Contributors:
Dates: 1913
Location: Charlotte, Mecklenburg County
Street Address: 2010 The Plaza, Charlotte, NC
Status: Standing
Type:
  • Residential

Masonic Temple (Charlotte, Mecklenburg County)

Mecklenburg Charlotte

1914

Contributors:
Dates: 1914
Location: Charlotte, Mecklenburg County
Street Address: 329 S. Tryon St., Charlotte, NC
Status: No longer standing
Type:
  • Fraternal
Images Published In:
  • Mary Norton Kratt and Mary Manning Boyer, Remembering Charlotte: Postcards from a New South City, 1905-1950 (2000).
Note:

The imposing Egyptian Revival style Masonic temple was among the state's premier examples of its style and type. It was razed in 1987, and its massive lotus columns were reused in Rock Hill, South Carolina.

Masonic Temple

John Blue House (Aberdeen, Moore County)

Moore Aberdeen

1888

Contributors:
Dates: Ca. 1888; 1903
Location: Aberdeen, Moore County
Street Address: 200 Blue St., Aberdeen, NC
Status: No longer standing
Type:
  • Residential

Masonic Building (Greenville, Pitt County)

Pitt Greenville

1902

Contributors:
Dates: 1902
Location: Greenville, Pitt County
Street Address: Greenville, NC
Status: No longer standing
Type:
  • Fraternal
Images Published In:
  • Michael Cotter, ed., The Architectural Heritage of Greenville, North Carolina (1988).

Jarvis Hall (Greenville, Pitt County)

Pitt Greenville

1909

Contributors:
Dates: 1909
Location: Greenville, Pitt County
Street Address: East Carolina University, Greenville, NC
Status: Standing
Type:
  • Educational
Images Published In:
  • Michael Cotter, ed., The Architectural Heritage of Greenville, North Carolina (1988).
Note:

Jarvis Hall is one of the most intact of several buildings designed at present East Carolina University by Hook and Rogers and Herbert W. Simpson, typically in red brick with red tile roofs. The college was established in 1907, and these architects designed the earliest part of the campus.

Proctor Hotel (Greenville, Pitt County)

Pitt Greenville

1912

Variant Name(s):
  • Minges Building
Contributors:
Dates: 1912
Location: Greenville, Pitt County
Street Address: 300 block S. Evans St., Greenville, NC
Status: Altered
Type:
  • Commercial
Images Published In:
  • Michael Cotter, ed., The Architectural Heritage of Greenville, North Carolina (1988).

Proctor Hotel

Banks Presbyterian Church (Union County)

Union

1911

Contributors:
Dates: 1911
Location: Union County
Street Address: SR 1315, Marvin, NC
Status: Standing
Type:
  • Religious
Images Published In:
  • Suzanne S. Pickens, ed., Sweet Union: An Architectural and Historical Survey of Union County, North Carolina (1990).

Eliza Pittman Memorial Auditorium (Raleigh, Wake County)

Wake Raleigh

1906

Contributors:
Dates: Ca. 1906
Location: Raleigh, Wake County
Street Address: St. Mary's School, Hillsborough St., Raleigh, NC
Status: Standing
Type:
  • Educational
Images Published In:
  • Linda L. Harris and Mary Ann Lee, An Architectural and Historical Inventory of Raleigh, North Carolina (1978).

Eliza Pittman Memorial Auditorium

Chapel Hill Graded School (Chapel Hill, Orange County)

Orange Chapel Hill

1915

Contributors:
Dates: 1915
Location: Chapel Hill, Orange County
Street Address: Franklin St., Chapel Hill, NC
Status: No longer standing
Type:
  • Educational
Note:

The school was located on Franklin Street, southwest of the intersection with Columbia Street, where University Square is currently. It became Chapel Hill High School in 1936, and was demolished in the 1970s.

Catawba County Courthouse (Newton, Catawba County)

Catawba Newton

1924

Contributors:
Dates: 1924
Location: Newton, Catawba County
Street Address: Courthouse Square, Newton, NC
Status: Standing
Type:
  • Public
Images Published In:
  • Catherine W. Bishir and Michael T. Southern, A Guide to the Historic Architecture of Piedmont North Carolina (2003).
Note:

The Renaissance Revival style edifice is faced in Indiana limestone.

Catawba County Courthouse

Masonic Building (Shelby, Cleveland County)

Cleveland Shelby

1923

Contributors:
Dates: 1923
Location: Shelby, Cleveland County
Street Address: 203 S. Washington St., Shelby, NC
Status: Standing
Type:
  • Fraternal
Note:

The building of buff colored brick is one of the state's chief examples of Egyptian Revival style, with lotus columns and a frieze of wings. It recalls the imposing Masonic Building (1914) in Charlotte planned by Hook and Rogers.

National Bank of Fayetteville (Fayetteville, Cumberland County)

Cumberland Fayetteville

1922

Contributors:
Dates: 1922
Location: Fayetteville, Cumberland County
Street Address: Fayetteville, NC
Status: Unbuilt
Type:
  • Commercial
Note:

Among the projects cited to Rogers in the Manufacturers' Record was the 13-story National Bank in Fayetteville, in association with Stiles S. Dixon (MR July 13, 1922). The Fayetteville Observer reported on June 27 that the company planned to build a 10 or 12-story bank, and that on display was a picture of a bank building "drawn by Willard G. Rogers of Charlotte and Stiles S. Dixon of Fayetteville, and presented to the bank," giving an idea of the future building. This project evidently stalled, for a short time later, the National Bank of Fayetteville (1923-1926) was built 10 stories tall from designs by Charles C. Hartmann of Greensboro.

First National Bank of Cherryville (Cherryville, Gaston County)

Gaston Cherryville

1916

Contributors:
Dates: 1916
Location: Cherryville, Gaston County
Street Address: 100 S. Mountain St., Cherryville, NC
Status: Standing
Type:
  • Commercial

First Baptist Church (Gastonia, Gaston County)

Gaston Gastonia

1918

Contributors:
Dates: 1918
Location: Gastonia, Gaston County
Street Address: 201 W. Franklin Blvd., Gastonia, NC
Status: Standing
Type:
  • Religious
Images Published In:
  • Piper Peters Aheron, Gastonia and Gaston County, North Carolina (2001).
Note:

The brick church with tile roof is an unusual use of the Mission style in a church in Piedmont North Carolina.

Adler Brothers Building (Kinston, Lenoir County)

Lenoir Kinston

1922

Contributors:
Dates: 1922
Location: Kinston, Lenoir County
Street Address: 126-128 N. Queen St., Kinston, NC
Status: Unknown
Type:
  • Commercial
Note:

The 4-story Adler Brothers Building was announced in the Kinston Daily Free Press as one of eastern North Carolina's largest department stores, with a front of glass and polychrome terra cotta. Architect Liston Mallard was directly involved, as "eastern manager" for architect Rogers.

Willard G. Rogers House (Charlotte, Mecklenburg County)

Mecklenburg Charlotte

1907

Contributors:
Dates: Ca. 1907
Location: Charlotte, Mecklenburg County
Street Address: 524 East Blvd., Charlotte, NC
Status: Standing
Type:
  • Residential
Note:

Rogers designed the shingled, gambrel roofed dwelling as his and his wife's residence.

Addison Apartments (Charlotte, Mecklenburg County)

Mecklenburg Charlotte

1926

Contributors:
Dates: 1926
Location: Charlotte, Mecklenburg County
Street Address: 831 W. Morehead St., Charlotte, NC
Status: Standing
Type:
  • Residential
Note:

The J. A. Jones Construction Company acquired two lots at the corner of E. Morehead and McDowell Streets in 1922, a key location in the expansion of the Dilworth suburb. J. A. Jones formed a real estate company with his sons to develop the apartment building, which was designed by architect Willard G. Rogers, who had previously been in partnership with architect C. C. Hook. The company and the building were given the name Addison, J. A. Jones's middle name. See Charlotte Historic Properties Report for the Addison Apartments by William H. Huffman, Dan L. Morrill, and Sherry J. Joines (1994, 1997) at http://www.cmhpf.org/S&Rs%20Alphabetical%20Order/surveys&raddison.htm.

Addison Apartments

Rankin Apartments (Charlotte, Mecklenburg County)

Mecklenburg Charlotte

1921

Contributors:
Dates: 1921
Location: Charlotte, Mecklenburg County
Street Address: East Ave. and Davidson St., Charlotte, NC
Status: Unknown
Type:
  • Residential
Note:

In 1921, several local businessmen formed the Rankin Apartments Company, which proposed to build an 8-story, modern apartment building for which Rogers drew the plans. The Charlotte News of March 16, 1921, referred to it as the "Million Dollar Apartment House" with "many new features." It is not clear whether the project was accomplished.

Willard G. Rogers's Work Locations

Bibliography

  • Catherine W. Bishir and Michael T. Southern, A Guide to the Historic Architecture of Piedmont North Carolina (2003).
  • Thomas W. Hanchett and William B. Huffman, "W. G. Rogers House" (1984), Charlotte-Mecklenburg Historic Landmarks Commission Survey & Research Reports, http://www.cmhpf.org/S&Rs%20Alphabetical%20Order/surveys&rrogershouse.htm.
  • William H. Huffman, Dan L. Morrill and Sherry J. Joines, "The Addison Apartments" (1994), Charlotte-Mecklenburg Historic Landmarks Commission Survey & Research Reports, http://www.cmhpf.org/S&Rs%20Alphabetical%20Order/surveys&raddison.htm.
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