History of the Inn
Elizabeth City Bed & Breakfast
L. S. Blades, Jr. House
108 E. Fearing Street
Realtor Mack Sawyer bought this lot in November 1895 from the Anchoree Lodge Odd Fellows to the west and had a two-story building erected by June 1896, when the vacant building was illustrated on the Sanborn map. That November he sold the property to the Virgiliant Lodge #3993 of the Grand Order of Odd Fellows, on of Elizabeth City’s earliest black fraternal lodges. Their trustees were William E. Martin, John A. Demsey and Cicero White. The lodge remained here until 1910 when the property was purchased by Dr. Lemuel S. Blades (1866-1954), who lived in an impressive Colonial Revival house immediately to the north. Blades had the lodge moved about ten feetaway from the corner and completely renovated for residential rental purposes. Among the stylish elements added to the house were elaborate Victorian “maple leaf” moldings and an extraordinary faux-marble slate Eastlake mantel.
The house was rented to Dr. Zenas Fearing (1873-1928) and his wife, Emily (Hollowell) Fearing until 1929. It was then occupied by Blades’ son L. S. Blades, Jr. (1904-1974) and his wife Eliza O’Hagan Laughinghouse) Blades. An attorney, Blades was president and chairman of the board of the Norfolk and Carolina Telephone and Telegraph Company from 1940 until 1972. He also served one term as mayor from 1955-1957. His widow resided here until 1988 and in 1989 it was purchased by Joe and Darla (Elliott) Semonich. After rehabilitation, they will operate the house as the Elizabeth City Bed and Breakfast.
On the Shores of the Pasquotank: The Architectural Heritage of Elizaeth City and Pasquotank County, North Carolina. Thomas R. Butchko Copyright 1989