Completely surrounded today by the beautiful campus of Piedmont College, this Queen Anne house, built by C. R. Pyle, is one of the last surviving relics of a planned prohibition community that never completely materialized. In 1889, a corporation called the Demorest Home, Mining and Improvement Company acquired the vast estate of Henry A. Rosignol for the purpose of creating a model town free from alcohol and vice. The community was to be named Demorest, for prominent prohibitionist and philanthropist William Jennings Demorest of New York. A depression in the 1890s eventually led to the bankruptcy of the corporation but the town grew in spite of it.
After C. R. Pyle sold the house to L. H. Laughton in 1899, a procession of owners followed until it was purchased by Ross Davis in 1939. As early as 1896, during the Pyle’s ownership, rooms were rented in the house by students and faculty at the Demorest Normal School and the J. S. Green Collegiate Institute (now Piedmont College). This tradition continued into the late 20th century. The Davis family always made the house a welcoming space to students and to the community for a host of events and it remains one of the most beloved landmarks in Demorest.
National Register of Historic Places