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Home North Carolina Hertford County City of Murfreesboro Historical Markers Murfree House

Murfree House

Main Street and Wynn Street, Murfreesboro, NC, USA

Latitude & Longitude: 36° 26' 32.5212", -77° 6' 3.7476"
  North Carolina State Historical Marker
    North Carolina State
Historical Marker
    Marker Text:
"Home of William Hardy Murfree, member of U.S. Congress, 1813-1817; N.C. House, 1805 & 1812; presidential elector, 1812. House stands 1 block N."
      William Hardy Murfree, attorney and congressman, was born at Murfreesboro on October 2, 1781, the son of Hardy and Sally Brickell Murfree. His father, a Continental army veteran, stressed education, and insisted that his son enter the University of North Carolina, where he graduated from in 1801. Murfree read law for a year in Edenton before he opened a law practice in Murfreesboro.

      In 1805 Murfree entered politics upon his election to the state House of Commons. He was reelected in 1812, and also served as a Democratic elector in the presidential campaign of 1813. That same year he was elected to Congress, where he introduced several unsuccessful plans for internal improvements in eastern North Carolina. In 1820, discouraged his lack of success, Murfree moved to Tennessee, settling in 1823 on lands given to his father for his service in the Revolution. Murfree survived only three more years, before dying on January 9, 1826, leaving a widow and one son.

      Murfree’s house, known as “Melrose,” a two-story brick building in the Greek Revival-style, was built in the first decade of the nineteenth century. In 1813 Murfree sold the house to Brigadier General Joseph Dickinson, who commanded all American forces in the vicinity of Norfolk, Virginia, during the War of 1812. Dickinson constructed several additions to the house before his death in 1822.

William S. Powell, ed., Dictionary of North Carolina Biography, IV, 344-345—sketch by Thomas C. Parramore
John H. Wheeler, Historical Sketches of North Carolina from 1584 to 1851 (1851)
Biographical Dictionary of the American Congress (1961)
Catherine W. Bishir and Michael Southern, A Guide to the Historic Architecture of Eastern North Carolina (1996)
National Historic Register Application for Melrose (1970)
Murfree House Historical Marker Location Map, Murfreesboro, North Carolina