LINCOLNTON – Several historic homes and a church in Lincolnton will be featured in the Speak Up For Children Holiday Tour of Homes on Friday. This event offers a unique opportunity to view the inside of these private homes, as well as the historic church, all decked out for the holidays. The tour is self-guided, and each location will have volunteers to provide additional information about each home.
Most of the homes on this year’s tour are in the downtown Lincolnton area such as the Mauney-Rudisill-Long house, officially recorded as being built in 1910. It’s a mix between a Queen Anne and Colonial Revival style home. It’s a one-and-a-half story structure built with locally made brick. The interior of the house retains much of its original wood flooring, trim, detailing and layout. Exposed brick walls remain in many of the first-floor rooms that include the parlor, bedroom and bathroom on the north side and the living room, dining room and kitchen on the south side. Original fireplaces are located downstairs in the foyer, parlor, living room and bedroom.
Benjamin Mauney and Mary Elllen Mullen Mauney were one of the houses first occupants. Mr. Mauney was a tax collector for the City of Lincolnton, as well as chief of police and later the town mayor.
One of the Mauney’s daughters, Maude Ellen Mauney, married Judge Lawrence E. Rudisill in 1919. He was a recorder judge in Lincolnton. They raised their family there and occupied the house until their deaths. Lawrence Rudisill, Jr. obtained the property in 1954 and sold it to Dennis and Janice Long in 1956.
Dennis Long was an engineer with WLON radio station in Lincolnton. Coincidentally, there was a brick structure in the backyard that was used to broadcast a radio show during a world war before the Longs owned the property. This building had to be removed for safety reasons due to being in a state of disrepair. The owners at the time, used the bricks from the building to build the pillars at the end of the driveway and to build part of the foundation for the added on master closet. After Mr. Long’s death, Mrs. Long continued to live in the home until 2000.
Brad and Whitney Davis and their family have lived in the house since October 2021. They moved to Lincolnton from Oklahoma and have found it a perfect home for their family. Brad Davis is the pastor at Living Word Church in Maiden.
“We were looking quite a bit during our transition,” Whitney Davis said. “There wasn’t a lot on the market. We found a house near the country club that we’d kind of settled on, then this one came on the market. I walked in the front door and saw the grand staircase and fell in love. I told Brad that it was my southern girl dream come true.”
The house was already in perfect condition, so the Davis family was able to move right in.
“When we found out about the tour and that it was for foster children, we wanted to be on the tour,” she said. “We love the house and wanted to share it with others. Christmas is my favorite holiday.”
The other sites on the tour are Woodside Plantation owned by Rick and Myra Jane Ramseur, the Frank and Rose Budd Chamberlain House owned by Tom and Betty Flohr, the Alexander-Carter-Kurtz house owned by Marc and Kim Kurtz and St. Luke’s Episcopal Church.
“Speak Up For Children is a nonprofit that was started by Lincoln County guardians ad litem,” Jill Eaddy who is the Speak Up For Children vice president said. “As guardian ad litem, you can’t give the children anything or do anything for them, so we started the nonprofit so we could give them opportunities and materials that would help them to have more normal lives.”
The money raised by Speak Up For Children is used for things like sending foster children to summer camp, purchasing clothing, tutoring, and other items.
“The foster parents, frankly, don’t get enough money for keeping them to do these extra things and the Department of Social Services doesn’t have the money,” Eaddy said. “They provide the basics, but we try to do these things that normally wouldn’t be available to them. We try to add normalcy to their lives.”
Transportation is not provided and the homes are not handicap accessible. Children without tickets won’t be admitted nor will children in strollers or being carried by an adult. No animals, including service animals, will be permitted. No photography is allowed inside the homes.
Ticket prices are $20 in advance and $25 the day of the event. They may be purchased online at http://www.speakupforchildren.us or in person at the following locations the Lincolnton, 7th Moon Boutique, Treasures on Main, Burton Farms General Store, Homeplace, and the Cultural Center.
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