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The history of Dix Park’s stone houses

A look into what they used to be and what they will become.

A photo of the historic Superintendents House in Dix Park.

The former Superintendent’s House.

Courtesy of Dix Park Conservancy

Three long-abandoned, historic stone houses in Dix Park are being transformed as part of the park’s master plan. The houses — built 100 years ago — will be repurposed into a visitors center, office and education space, and public restrooms. There will also be outdoor seating and classroom space, gardens, and an accessible connection to the nearby Rocky Branch Greenway.

We bet you’re wondering... what did these structures used to be?

The houses were built in 1923, when the park’s 308 acres housed Dorothea Dix Hospital, NC’s first mental health facility. They served as the Superintendent’s House, Physician’s House, and Gatekeeper’s Cottage. The former dwellings acted as an entry point for thousands of patients and guests to the hospital.

The $5 million restoration project broke ground in late January and is expected to take approximately one year to complete.

Click through the slideshow below to see the current state of the houses compared to what they will become.

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