1632 Patton Avenue

 

This is a draft, now being reviewed by members of the McCrorey Heights Neighborhood Association. Please share comments with Tom@HistorySouth.org 

Built 1965-66 for Second Ward High School principal E.E. Waddell, one the city’s top educators and civic leaders, and his wife Frances C. Waddell, also a teacher. Educational facilities today are named in Dr. Waddell’s honor in both Albemarle, N.C., and in Charlotte.

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Dr. Elbert Edwin Waddell received bachelor’s and master’s degrees from North Carolina A & T State University and the Doctor of Education degree from Duke University. After serving as principal of Kingville High School in Albemarle, N.C.  from 1943 to 1963, he was recruited to Charlotte. Dr. Waddell led Second Ward High School as principal from 1963 to 1969 when the building fell to “urban renewal” bulldozers. He moved into CMS administration, first as Assistant to the Superintendent and later Assistant Superintendent for Auxiliary Services, until retirement in 1982. He died in 1988.

Two buildings honor his impact as a community leader. In Albemarle, the former Kingville High campus became E.E. Waddell Community Center in 1976 and remains in use in the 2010s. In Charlotte, E. E. Waddell High School on Nations Ford Road opened in 2001.

Principal Waddell’s wife Frances Caldwell Waddell was also a life-long educator, teaching in the public schools first around Albemarle, then around Charlotte. She held degrees from Barber Scotia Seminary, Winston Salem State, and NC A&T University. Her volunteer work with First Baptist Church West resulted in her being named the church’s Woman of the Year in 1977.

Dr. Waddell’s second wife Joyce Davis Waddell became a political leader. A graduate of South Carolina University with a B.S. degree, she earned an M.S. degree from A&T University; a M.A. degree from Appalachian State University and a PhD degree from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. After retiring from a teaching career, Dr. Joyce Waddell won the first of two terms on the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Board of Education in 2009. She moved up to an NC Senate seat in 2014 and in 2016 won reelection.

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Architecture

One of the few two-story houses in McCrorey Heights, this large dwelling commands a slight rise at one of the highest points in the neighborhood. The design uses Colonial massing — a central block with a two-story tall white-columned portico across the front (vaguely reminiscent of George Washington’s Mount Vernon), flanked by a shorter and smaller two-story wing on each side. The large front door is topped by a “broken” pediment, another Colonial touch. Otherwise the detailing of the house owes more to Ranch style design than to Colonial precedent.

Building permits

Patton-1632-permit
Date issued: November 4, 1965
Owner: E.E. Waddell
Contractor: H.W. Carriker
Architect or Engineer: Owner
Estimated cost: $27,000
Other permit info: Build residence

Patton-1632-permit-a
Date issued: June 24, 1969
Owner: Elbert E. Waddell
Contractor: Same
Estimated cost: $900
Other permit info: Build swim pool

Building permit files, Robinson-Spangler Carolina Room, Charlotte Mecklenburg Library.

First appeared in city directory

1967 – Elbert E. Waddell & Frances C.
He:Principal, 2nd Ward High School
She: Teacher, Lincoln Hgts Elem School
(Also Phyllis D, student)

City directory collection, Robinson-Spangler Carolina Room, Charlotte Mecklenburg Library.

Resources

“E.E. Waddell High School,” Wikipedia. On-line at: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/E._E._Waddell_High_School

“Closing Schools’ Principals Placed,” Charlotte Observer, August 1, 1969.

“Schools Reject Bid to Reconsider Plan,” Charlotte Observer, August 1, 1969.

“Second Ward PTA May Seek Injunction,” Charlotte Observer, March 20, 1969.

“Senator Joyce Waddell,” profile on-line at: http://lowratesnc.com/legislatordetail.aspx?LegisID=WADDDJXXXXXXNC

“Waddell-Davis” wedding announcement, Charlotte Observer, May 1, 1980.