Historic Home Making Way For Goodwill Expansion

Roanoke, VA - A rare home that dates back to before the Civil War is no more as "Nestle Brook" is razed to make room for a community garden.150 years ago next month General David Hunter and his Union troops marched past this Roanoke home. They burned many in the valley... not the one at the corner of the Salem Turnpike and 24th Street."It's antebellum - or dates before the Civil War. And Roanoke City and this area does not have a whole lot of those. I'd say we have about a dozen still left... at least in the city," said Alison Blanton, President of the Roanoke Valley Preservation Foundation. One less as this one is now being razed to make room for a community garden and maybe, one day, a community center as well. Blanton says the home first appeared on their endangered list in the late 1990's. Her group finally surrendered trying to save it after meeting with Goodwill leaders following its purchase last fall"At that time we found out the interior had been gutted by the previous owner before it was sold to Goodwill," said Blanton.Gutted as part of the television series, "Salvage Dawgs", which left little option for the new owners in trying to salvage the home itself. "To be fiscally responsible we could not redo that house. We're a non-profit and all of our revenues go back to supporting our community and helping people get back to work," said Kelly Coleman, Director of Marketing with Goodwill Industries. But even in the loss of Nestle Brook both currently interested parties see a silver lining. Preservationists say this promotes awareness for remaining landmarks. Goodwill Industries sees it as furthering their mission. "It is sad to see a house go but we do see a vision for something that is going to be much, much more important to the community in the long run," said Coleman.Nestle Brook is said to have been started in the 1830's and finished around 1850. In recent years the property was subdivided into apartments. In all, it sold... after the house was gutted of its antique furnishings, for $330,00 dollars which included three buildings and three acres of land.