Carmichael works on restoring historic plantation home
MAKING PLANS Meridian businessman Gil Carmichael talks with his sister, Myrna Horton, outside the Woolverton-Boyd House, off Highway 513 east of Enterprise. Carmichael is renovating the historic home. Photo by William F. West / The Meridian Star
By William F. West / community editor
Sept. 2, 2002
ENTERPRISE A longtime Meridian businessman hopes to restore as accurately as possible a plantation home on the National Register of Historic Places just east of here.
Gil Carmichael is asking for help with the Woolverton-Boyd House. Plans call for having the house restored by November or December and ready to show to the public next spring.
A crew has restored the building's supporting brick piers and is replacing rotting beams with new ones. The crew will also reconstruct the roof with shingles that look like the original ones.
On Friday, workers were doing major restoration work on the back porch. The home is unusual because the front columns appear to be octagon-shaped, but actually have seven sides each.
Carmichael said that carpenters and craftsmen who originally built the home liked to do those kinds of things as signatures of their works.
The National Register's Web site doesn't list the year the Woolverton-Boyd House was built. But it does say the home was significant in the 1850s to mid-1870s for its sound construction and Greek Revival style.
The home was first owned by the Woolverton family and has been in the Boyd family for generations. But it has not been occupied in recent years.
The home's current owner, Stephanie Boyd Mayet, is a policeman in the south Louisiana town of Lockport. Mayet didn't want to sell the home, which is surrounded by 90 acres of land.
Mayet liked restoration work that one of Carmichael's sisters, Myrna Carmichael Horton of Enterprise, had done to her own home. So the three formed a partnership.
In June, restoration began on the two-story structure off Highway 513.
A master craftsman, Chris Grayson of Quitman, is in charge of the labor. Grayson's uncle, Charles Schrimpshire, is also making special doors and special moldings.
Another man, Brother Wallace, has a nearby sawmill and is converting pine trees into massive new support beams.
When the restoration is complete, plans could include making the home a place for a bed-and-breakfast, social gatherings and weddings.