The James B. Duke Mansion in Charlotte
Before James Duke became the primary benefactor of Trinity College, later named Duke University in honor of his father, he was already involved in hydroelectric power generation in North Carolina. He was a very rich man, and he needed a house that would show his great wealth. In Myers Park, the most exclusive neighborhood in Charlotte, he built his palace. It was the place where his daughter, Doris, would spend her teenage years. Presidents and scions of industry and politics would visit there.
Today, the mansion is a luxury Bed and Breakfast, and is the perfect place for weddings and other special occasions. I was there for a fund raiser for WDAV-FM, the classical music station at Davidson College. It was sunset, with Hurricane Florence churning in the Atlantic.
Doris Duke’s portrait…
James B. Duke
When the house was built in 1915, it was the grandest residence in Charlotte. It is on the National Register of Historic Places.