The team behind the Magnolia House, a historic landmark in Greensboro, is raising the funds necessary to bring it back to life as an inn this fall.
The house was home to the Magnolia Hotel in the 50s and 60s. It was owned and operated by the Gist family and featured throughout the years in the Green Book – a publication outlining safe places for Black travelers to stay and dine during the Jim Crow era.
Ike and Tina Turner, Ray Charles, and James Baldwin are only a few of the famous individuals who stayed there.
The house is now owned and run by Sam Pass and his daughter Natalie Pass Miller. It's open for lunch and brunch and special events. Historic site manager and curator Melissa Knapp says the goal is to honor the home's history in renovations.
“When you walk in through the front door, you're really walking into the floorplan of the Green Book Hotel," she says. "It's exactly how the Gist family had it aside from the fact that we have a commercial kitchen now, so there are a few small tweaks.”
Knapp says they'll be expanding their educational offerings as well. This Saturday there will be a community walk-through from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. The ticketed event will highlight the vision for reopening the inn.