VILLA RICA, Ga. - A group of Carroll County residents are fighting to save a historic building older than the county itself.
According to tax records, the Hart House was built in 1824, one year before Carroll County became a county. About a dozen Villa Rica Area Historical Society Members are working together to save the historic house.
“The Hart family was instrumental in bringing the Baptist faith to Georgia and the location is important too,” said Jodi Mount with the Villa Rica Area Historical Society. “It’s on a major thoroughfare that's been a major thoroughfare since the Creek Indian Nation.”
The Hart House sits on the property of the 160-year-old First Baptist Church Villa Rica. According to city documents, the church was going to demolish the Hart House for additional parking. Asbestos, termite and water damage also played a role in that decision, but after some community members raised concerns, the church began working with the historical society on a plan to save Hart House.
"The church has been very gracious with us and working with us exploring the possibilities of moving it,” said Mount.
The church is allowing the house to be moved to another location or moving the house to another part of their property until a permanent place is found. The church is even willing to contribute funds it had set aside for the demolition.
“We'd love to see the house where it is, restored and opened to visitors," said Mount. "To use as a teaching tool for people all over, to be a connection to our past, to our history, to who we are.”
The historical society has until June 23 to raise money and come up with a solution to save the Hart House.
"It's important that we have these structures how they were built to symbolize the hard work that our country was built on, the sacrifices that people made and it will be an incredible learning tool for future generations," said Mount. To learn more about saving the Hart House go to the Villa Rica Area Historical Society Members Facebook page “Save Hart House.”