On Saturday, Dec. 22, 2018, the Nolensville Historical Society (NHS) held a special membership meeting regarding their role in the preservation of the historic Morton-Brittain house. Members took action and funded the initial portion of the fee for a structure moving company to move the home within the Town of Nolensville.
Fundraising efforts are immediately underway. Tax deductible contributions will help raise the remaining balance due for the moving fee as well as the money needed for stabilizing the home on site. The Morton-Brittain house is one of the few remaining structures in Nolensville that is on the National Register of Historic Places.
Saving the Morton-Brittain house means preserving the architectural and cultural heritage of Nolensville. We have lost so many original historic buildings already, such as King's Inn. Originally, the Morton home was a two-story grand home around 1870. It was hit by a tornado in the early 1900s, owned by the Brittain's, and is the single-story home it is today. It was built with "Italianate detailing in the doors, windows, and decorative elements,” according to the article in the National Register. The property was purchased in 1859 by George W. Morton, with the house constructed around 1870. The property was sold to the James Brittain family in 1882. In February of this year when the home was to be demolished, the Nolensville community new and old came out to express the value of preserving history while growing. The NHS mission is to promote a knowledge and awareness of the historical heritage of Nolensville and the surrounding areas and to promote the preservation and restoration of historic sites in and around the Nolensville community.
The Nolensville Historical Society has successfully saved and restored the old school and gymnasium. The historic Nolensville School was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 2012 and the official historical marker was erected on site in 2018. The property has become a significant event center, a community venue and houses the Nolensville Historical Society Museum which showcases a timeless classroom, a 1937 kitchen display, Nolensville memorabilia and a gift shop.
Museum hours and updates on the Morton-Brittain project may be found on the following Nolensville Historical Society website:nolensvillehistoricalsociety.org
The Nolensville Historical Society is partnering with the Heritage Foundation in this effort to preserve this home with their guidance and experience. CEO Bari Beasley, has been instrumental in advising the NHS and has confirmed the Heritage's Foundation's commitment to preserve all of Williamson County's historically significant structures.
According to the Heritage Foundation, moving the home would put its National Register of Historic Places accreditation in jeopardy, however, there are "cases where a home could maintain accreditation if the home is in grave danger but is moved to a similar setting."
Due to recent legal developments, moving the home is the only recourse to save it, and is also an opportunity for a community to lovingly restore it for generations to come.