History of the Grice-Fearing House

Francis Grice purchased the lot at 200 South Road Street in 1798 from John Hamilton, and construction on the house started soon after. Built as a two-story, single-pile frame house, it originally was only one room deep on both stories. Mr. Grice had come to Elizabeth City from Pennsylvania and became a partner with Charles Grice (relationship unknown) in Charles Grice and Company, Elizabeth City's pioneer mercantile concern.
      When Francis Grice died ca. 1808, he willed the house to his widow, Mary Tisdale Grice. Later she married Isaiah Fearing, the first of five generations of the Fearing family to live in the house. Fearing was a native of Massachusetts, having come to Elizabeth City in 1814. He was a successful merchant in Elizabeth City. After his wife died, he married Submit "Mittie" Woodruff Bartlett in 1824. In 1840, the Fearings substantially enlarged the house, by adding two rooms to the rear, adding the present roof structure, and erecting the present front two-story porch.
      The original two-story, single-pile front part of the house retains its nine-over-nine sash windows which are enframed
by flat, three-part Federal surrounds with rounded sills. In the house's interior, the only surviving element is the dog-leg
closed-stringer staircase with diagonally-turned balusters, raised panels, and modest Federal surrounds.
      In about 1840, the southern wing was added to the house; this wing was originally sited on the Poole property, neighboring the Fearing property. This wing was rolled on logs to its present position and attached to the Grice-Fearing house. It was built in the 1770s and the original pine floors are still in the house today - the floorboards run the length of the room, each board one entire piece of wood.
      The mantel in the parlor is not original to the house, and is thought to be from Louisiana; the mantel in the dining room, also not original to the house, is from Camden County (NC).
      Another wing was added in 1885, to the north end of the house. This wing had been a doctor's office and a separate apartment. The present owners, the Falcons, have remodeled this wing for their present living suite.
      The Fearings resided here until their deaths, at which time the property was acquired by their eldest son, John Bartlett Fearing (1827-1888). Later, the house became the home of Enoch Pratt Fearing (1882-1952), a son of John and Mary Eliza "Mollie" Fearing. The Enoch Fearings resided here until 1970. Fearing family members then occupied the house, including Edward Fearing, until it was sold to Michael J. and Linda L. Ludden.
      The Falcons bought the house from the Luddens in 2004 and remodeled it in order to make it a two-suite bed and breakfast. That process took over two years and entailed installing central heat and air conditioning, and replacing the plumbing and wiring. Additionally, a new bathroom was added to the second floor, and a sunroom was added to the south wing.

Much of this information has been taken from On the Shores of the Pasquotank, by Thomas R. Butchko

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