About Magnolia Manor Plantation Bed and Breakfast
Larry and Sheila Carver are the innkeepers at Magnolia Manor Plantation Bed and Breakfast. The Carvers acquired the house and the adjoining 13 acres of land in June 1997. They opened Magnolia Manor Plantation in February 2003, and named the house for the magnificent magnolia tree in the front yard. The 13 acres include several of the original out-buildings, an orchard of 21 mature pecan trees, and antique, white oak trees.
The Carvers and their children worked on the manor house every weekend for five years before moving into the home in June 2002. During the restoration, they completely gutted the house to repair structural damage. The original wood work was replaced or reconditioned as it was in 1859. The Carvers also replaced the 2,000 square feet of antique heart pine flooring with flooring milled from an 1880 cotton mill in Roanoke Rapids. The restoration process also included updating the house with all modern conveniences.
At Magnolia Manor Plantation, guests experience true southern hospitality in the simple elegance and serenity of an authentic plantation manor house. Magnolia Manor Plantation Bed and Breakfast has become the premier destination wedding venue in the North Carolina Piedmont area. The manor house is listed on the U.S. National Register of Historic Places.
The Innkeepers at Magnolia Manor Plantation
Sheila holds a BS in Home Economics with an emphasis in Family Resources. She provided private early childhood education in Raleigh, North Carolina for many years and now tends to the needs of Magnolia Manor full time. Sheila serves as Magnolia Manor’s primary wedding coordinator and manages the manor house with Larry.
Larry holds a BS in Business Administration with an emphasis in Industrial Management from West Virginia University (where he met Sheila). He completed a long career with Nortel Networks and was the Town Administrator for the town of Warrenton, North Carolina for four years. He recently completed three years as the Town Manager for Franklinton, North Carolina. Larry is now retired, but helps Sheila manage Magnolia Manor.
THe John Watson House
The original manor house was built about 1815. It stood as a two-bay federal-style farm house on a stone foundation. The original house consisted of what is now our family room, dining room and the country hall. John Watson acquired the property in the 1830s along with roughly 2,100 acres.
In 1859, Watson commissioned the architect Jacob Holt to oversee the Italianate-style overbuild. These additions included the left and right wings, which contain the Ladies Parlor, the Gentleman’s Parlor, the Grand Hall with magnificent stair case, and the enlargement of rooms upstairs. The overbuild was erected on a brick foundation and gave the home the appearance of a house within a house. The house deteriorated as it passed from generation to generation, and from owner to owner. The 2,100 acre property was reduced to about 600 acres. Much of the original stone foundation still exists under the house. The Carvers are slowly accumulating and displaying furnishings and artifacts owned by John Watson.
- View a history of John Watson
Before and After Restoration Photos
At the insistence of their children, who were instrumental in the restoration process, Larry and Sheila have included a few before and after photos for your enjoyment.