How often have you driven on Hendersonville Road and wondered what this or that site used to look like before twenty-first century development? Let’s look at one address: 866 Hendersonville Road. This is what you see today.
866 Hendersonville Road was originally owned by Frank Mears. In 1945 Reginald O. Dodd purchased the stone building. Mr. Dodd was involved in various hospitality ventures during his career in Asheville. The post card below of the stone clad building appears in every image of the development on Hendersonville Road. You may have to look hard to find it though!
In April of 1946 Mr. Dodd was fined in Police Court for selling “liquor by the drink”. 21 pints of tax paid liquor were siezed. Later that year he changed the name to “The Patio”. By June of 1948 Mr. Dodd was employed by the George Vanderbilt Hotel in charge of banquets and parties.
In 1949 the stone building at 866 was purchased by John E. Metzger. Mr. Metzger tapped into the postwar boom in motel building for tourism. The first listing for The Forest Manor appeared in the city directory of 1951.
Colonel Hugh Beaton Jr. and his wife operated the Forest Manor from 1954 to 1957. The Forest Manor Restaurant was added to the site in 1955.
In 1957 the Forest Manor was purchased by J. Paul Kirk who owned Mountain Terrace near Enka.
Here’s the only post card featuring the Forest Manor Restaurant that I’ve found so far. It dates from the early 1960’s by the looks of the cars. In the mid-1970’s my two dearest friends and I would treat ourselves to fine dining in the restaurant. We were younger and easily impressed.
Posted by Terry Taylor, Board Member of Friends of the North Carolina Room