Matthews commissioners have designated the Barnum and Sara Sustare House, at 13700 Idlewild Road, an Historic Landmark.
That means current owners, Stuart Phelps and Charity Hope Brown Phelps, can apply for an automatic deferral of 50 percent of their property taxes as long as the home holds the historic landmark status. A letter from the Mecklenburg County Assessor's office says based on the current tax rate and property value, the Phelps are eligible to apply for almost $1,800 in deferred taxes from Mecklenburg County and the town of Matthews.
Charlotte Mecklenburg Landmark Commission's Stuart Gray says the Queen Anne style home, built around 1899, is a rare remaining example of a turn-of-the-century farm house in a rural environment. Before the middle of the 20th century, Gray says these sorts of homes on large tracks of land were prevalent in the Matthews area.
Original owner Barnum Sustare was well known in the Matthews community. He was a trustee and stockholder in the Bank of Matthews and served for many years as a town aldermen and member of the school board.
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He helped organize Mount Harmony Church and later built a recreational and entertainment center in Matthews known as Sustares.