|James Harvey Carson
came to Charlotte in the 1820's to live with his uncle. Here he is
as an elderly gentleman sitting in his home on South Tryon Street.
Carson became a wealthy man, and for a time he owned the Rudisell Gold
Mine in Charlotte. Carson Boulevard is named for him. Carson,
his family, his servants, and his home reveal what it was like to be a
wealthy Charlottean at the turn of the last century.
|This is a priceless
photograph. These are the four sons of James Harvey Carson sitting
with "Mammie," a former slave who stayed with the family after
freedom. She is sitting on the steps of her house that stood in back
of the main house on South Tryon St. Some might find it patronizing,
but the relationship between black servants and their employers could be
very warm and personal. Notice her attire. She no doubt
adopted this form of dress in slavery days. See the kerchief on her head.
|Here are James Harvey Carson's
grandchildren with two more black servants. They are standing atop a
Joggling Board. This was a favorite pastime for children in the late
nineteenth century. They would jump up and down on the board and
have a great time bouncing.
|Here is the Carson's house on
South Tryon St. right across from where the Charlotte Observer building
now stands. It looms through the trees like a ghost. It was a
grand Italianate style mansion.
|We have so few photographs of
the interiors of houses from the turn of the last century. This is
the Carson's dining room. Notice the picture molding with the
wallpaper above. Lots of glassware is above the mirror. Very
few Charlotteans lived in such luxury.