SURVEY AND RESEARCH REPORT
The Yandell Hotel and Grocery Store
and location of the property:
known as the Yandell Hotel and Grocery Store is located at 331
Main Street, Pineville, North Carolina.
and address of the present owner of the property:
present owner of the property is:
W. A. Yandell Rental and
PO Box 386
Pineville, NC 28134
Representative photographs of the property:
contains representative photographs of the property.
Photographs are available at the Charlotte-Mecklenburg
Historic Landmarks Commission office.
4. Maps depicting the location
of the property: This report contains a map
depicting the location of the property.
deed book reference to the property:
The most recent deed to this property is recorded in
Mecklenburg County Deed Book
on page 293. The tax parcel number of the property is
6. A brief
historical sketch of the property:
This report contains a brief historical sketch of the
7. A brief
architectural description of the property:
contains a brief architectural description of the
Documentation of why and in what ways the property meets
criteria for designation set forth in N. C. G. S.
Special significance in terms of its history,
architecture, and/or cultural importance: The
Commission judges that the property known as the Yandell
Hotel and Grocery Store does possess special significance in
terms of Charlotte-Mecklenburg. The Commission bases its
judgment on the following considerations:
1) Built in 1925 by W.A.
“Willie” Yandell, the Yandell Hotel and Grocery Store holds an
important and prominent position in the Town of
Pineville’s commercial core.
2) The building
has a close association with W.A. “Willie” Yandell, a
business man who was instrumental in the non-textile
commercial development of the town of Pineville during
the twentieth century, building and owning much of the
town’s commercial core.
Yandell Hotel and Grocery Store is closely associated with W.A.
“Willie” Yandell. The businessman maintained an
office, operated a hotel, and ran several other
businesses in the building.
Integrity of design, setting, workmanship, materials,
feeling and/or association:
Commission contends that the physical and architectural
description which is included in this report
demonstrates that the Yandell Hotel and Grocery Store
Valorem tax appraisal:
Commission is aware that designation would allow the
owner to apply for an automatic deferral of 50% of the
Ad Valorem taxes on all or any portion of the property
which becomes a designated "historic landmark."
The current total appraised tax value of the land and
improvements is $1,010,400. 331 Main Street occupies
9037 square feet of the 20,105 total square feet of
improvements on the tax parcel.
Portion of property recommended for designation:
The exterior of the building, the land on which it sits,
and the sidewalk directly in front of the building are
recommended for historic designation.
preparation of this report:
April 6, 2006
Stewart Gray and Hope Murphy
Pineville, North Carolina is located approximately eleven miles south
of the city of Charlotte. The small town had its
beginnings as a train stop when the Charlotte and South Carolina
Railroad opened a depot in 1852. The town,
incorporated in 1873, became a busy center for
agricultural support and textiles in the next few
In 1890 businessmen from Charlotte opened the Dover Yarn
Mill in Pineville. By the time the Mill had added
a weaving department in 1902 over two hundred people
were employed at the Mill.
In 1903 the population of Pineville had reached 700,
most of them involved in some way with the cotton
industry. Those not employed by the mill labored
as cotton farmers. Autumn would bring farmers to
Main Street where they would form long lines in order to
have their cotton ginned. Saturdays would also
bring farmers to town shop, pay debts, or trade mules.
For most of its history the south side of Main Street
has been owned by the Yandell family. W.A.
“Willie” Yandell began acquiring land on the
south side of Main Street in 1919. In
that year he purchased one half acre from C .H. Griffin
and his wife Rana
During the next four years Yandell acquired additional
Main Street frontage from the Wherry and Bailes
In a 1987 interview in the Charlotte Observer, Willeen
Yandell, W. A.’s daughter, recounted that when her father
arrived in Pineville in 1912, Main Street was only a
wagon path. The elder Yandell, recognized that the
growing town needed services like grocery stores and
began to develop them.
Main Street became more connected to the outside world
beginning in 1927 when a bridge was built over the
nearby Big Sugar Creek. With this bridge Main
Street became part of the main route between Charlotte
and Columbia, South Carolina. W. A. Yandell
realized a boom in his burgeoning business when work
crews arrived in Pineville to begin labor on the project. Yandell recounted to newspaper reporter Joe Flanders in
the 1960s that he remembered the day shortly before
Christmas of 1927 when the road contractor arrived in
Pineville. The contractor had with him 50 teams of mules and
enough men to run them. Faced with no place to
house his men, never mind the mules, the contractor
turned to Yandell. For the year that it took to build
the bridge and attached road Yandell housed men at his
hotel and found space to feed and keep the mules.
In June 1929 the business owners along the street
petitioned the Mayor of the town and Board of Alderman
to “grade and pave” the street. The property
owners, Mr. Yandell being the largest with 250 feet of
frontage, agreed to pay one-quarter of the cost of the
Into the 1930s Main Street in Pineville remained only
one of two paved streets in Pineville, the other being
By the 1930s Pineville housed along its two block
business district: five general stores, a dime
store, a drug store, a doctor’s office, hardware store,
pool room, livery stable, blacksmith, post office,
icehouse, movie theatre, and funeral home.
The south side of Main Street had a barbershop, a
theater, and a post office. There was also a
grocery store run by Yandell, over which there were
hotel rooms. Yandell’s business office was next door.
Joe Griffin recounts local residents “could get a loan,
cash a check, pay rent, or seek legal advice” there
Such services would have been vital in the community
lost its only bank, Pineville Loan & Savings Company, in
1929 at the outset of the banking crisis that preceded
the Depression. Griffin recounts that as a young boy in
Pineville, during the 1930s, most people who lived in or
near Pineville, shopped on Main Street.
Trips to uptown Charlotte were rare and became more so
during World War II when gas became rationed.
Griffin recounts that the sidewalk on either side of
Main Street was about four feet wide. Trees and
grass were planted between the sidewalk and the road.
This grassy strip served as a place for the stores to
display items on nice days.
Street Pineville 1915
Tom Eubanks, who grew up in the residential section of
Main Street, recounts that the character of the business
district remained intact until the 1960s, and changed
most radically in the 1980s. Eubanks recalls that
cotton-laden mule-drawn carts still often lined Main
Street after he returned from the Korean War in 1954.
As Charlotte grew from the north, some of Pineville’s
small town character began to wane. In 1972 Pineville
was home to 2000 people within its one square mile
corporate limits. The erection of apartment complexes,
malls, and the Carowinds amusement park three miles west
of the city brought traffic congestion to the sleepy
A 1987 Charlotte Observer article posits that the shift
in the type of retail stores located along Main Street
began in 1983. In that year the W.A. Yandell
Rental and Investment Co. rented 329 Main Street to
Betty Hiltz. She opened the China Connection, an
antique shop. Within five years every address on
the South side of Main Street, except two, would be
occupied by antique stores.
In 1987 Eubanks, in an act that signaled the end of
Pineville’s rural character, helped a local farmer remove
his cows from the land on which the Carolina Mall would
be erected, and brought them to auction. The connection of
Pineville to Charlotte and local towns by the completion
of the I-485 connection with I-77, along with the
widening of N.C. 51, the Main Street of Pineville, completed
the transformation of Pineville from a rural cotton
trading and production center to a thriving suburb.
Yandell Hotel and Grocery Store
During the 1930s the south side of Main Street in the
300 block was owned by Yandell. The building at
331-333 Main contained Yandell’s Grocery Store and W. A.
Yandell’s business office where Griffin recounts local
residents “could get a loan, cash a check, pay rent, or
seek legal advice.” Such services, as noted above, would have been
vital in the community that lost its only bank.
The only two-story building on the block was the Yandell
Hotel and Grocery Store. The second
story was a hotel. The hotel served some long-term
residents, among these was the Childers family, who
operated the nearby State Theater.
This building also held Yandell’s general store.
The store supplied groceries, hardware, notions, and
shoes. Eubanks recalls that his mother Lila
Eubanks would telephone the store and have groceries
delivered by truck to their house, located just outside
the business district of Main Street.
Faced with gas shortages during the Second World War, the
enterprising Yandell began to have groceries delivered
by a specially built bicycle. The bicycle
outfitted with a large basket at the front replaced the
delivery truck during the war years.
From his office at 333 Main Street Mr. Yandell built a
business that lasts until today. In its early days
his businesses included the general store, hotel, and
rental company. Yandell additionally conducted a
hog butchering operation from his backyard. Though
Yandell’s son Charles would serve on the Pineville Board
of Alderman in the late 1940’s, Yandell seems to have
had little patience for bureaucracy. He appeared
before the Board of Aldermen in December 1937.
At that meeting Yandell explained that he was refusing
to pay his taxes. It appears that Pineville
policeman, O.I. Furr, owed him. $145.00 for groceries
and back rent, which Yandell felt should be deducted
from the public coffer. The Board directed Yandell
to pay his taxes and then collect the debt owed from
W.A. Yandell Rental and Investment Company remained at
its location at 333 Main Street until 2002.
Though it is not clear when Yandell ceased to operate
his general store at 331 Main, beginning in the late
1960’s the space was occupied by food establishments,
including Marie’s Restaurant.
 In 1984, as part of the
shift in the types of stores on Main Street, George and Clarisse Morgan opened
The Antique Cupboard
at 331 Main, where it remains until now.
Hotel and Grocery Store was built in 1925. The two-story
solid-masonry building faces north on an angled lot
formed by Main and Dover Streets. The building
follows the obtuse angle of the lot. The rear
elevation is wider than the façade. The east
elevation of the Yandell Hotel and Grocery Store abuts 329 Main, a
one-story brick building. A steel lintel from 329
Main rests in a pocked cut into the brickwork of the
Yandell Hotel and Grocery Store.
The façade of
the Yandell Hotel and Grocery Store is composed of two nearly equal
bays that are separated by a single unadorned brick
pier. Hidden steel lintels support the upper
brickwork. All of the brickwork on the façade is laid
in running bond. Above the openings is a single
recessed brick panel that is bordered on all sides by a
single row of headers. The panel is composed of
soldier bricks laid in an offset pattern. The
east storefront opening has been infilled with later
brickwork, and the glass and trim appear to have been
replaced over the years. The west opening features
wooden door and transom frames that may be original.
Panels above the west opening may hide some original
woodwork. The second floor is pierced by six
evenly space boarded-over window openings with angled
brick sills. The wall is topped with a stepped
parapet that rises to a low peak. Vents or
scuppers are located below the parapet’s simple masonry
cap. The angled brickwork on the building’s northwest
corner is rough, with voids between each row of bricks.
The west side
elevation presents a variety of wall openings. Like
the façade, the west elevation features running-bond
brickwork. Coming from the front, the first bay
holds a large store window supported with an angled
corbelled sill. A short version of the brick panel
found on the façade is located above the window.
To the south of the first bay, five window openings with
replacement windows and a simple door opening pierce the
elevation. A substantial storefront-bay is located in
the rearmost bay of the west elevation. Recessed
partial-height walls with brick sills border a door
opening that has been narrowed with an infilling of
plywood. Wood framing in this bay may be original.
Plywood also covers woodwork above the doorway.
Another recessed brick panel tops this bay. The
second story is pierced by numerous single and double
window openings. Two stepped and peaked raised parapet
sections accent the large window and storefront
to the running-bond brickwork, decorative panels, and
parapets of the front and west elevation, the building’s
rear elevation is strictly utilitarian. The
brickwork is laid in common bond with seven rows of
stretchers laid between the rows of headers.
Conduit, rain gutters, and vent pipes run across the
rear elevation. Several window openings on the
first floor have been infilled with brick or covered
with plywood, leaving just two unobstructed door
openings. The second floor features six window
openings, all of which have been covered with plywood.
The east elevation is largely obscured by the adjoining
building. However, the second story of the
elevation is still exposed revealing eleven original
metal-framed windows. Each window is composed of
two six-light casements topped by a fixed eight-light
sash. The parapet wall steps down three times
toward the rear.