Hickory Flat is one of the oldest communities in Cherokee County. In recent years, it has experienced tremendous growth. As a result, most of the historic buildings in the community have been lost. The Hickory Flat Store and Masonic Hall was one of the last remaining historic buildings that once supported a thriving farm community.
This former store, gas station, and Masonic Hall was built in 1950 at the intersection of Highway 140 and East Cherokee Drive. The store was originally owned by the Quarles family, and it was run by Jim and Myrtie Pinyan and Laurence Turner, among others.
The second floor of the store was used as a Masonic Hall, and the Hickory Flat Masons installed the cornerstone when it was built. This brick building replaced an earlier wood structure that stood on one of the four corners that was the epicenter of historic Hickory Flat.
In recent years, the building had become vacant and neglected. When nearby development threatened, the Cherokee County Historical Society placed the store on its Sites Worth Saving list (RockBarn.org/historic-sites-worth-saving/). When it became known that there were plans to demolish it, the community rallied around efforts by the Historical Society to save the structure. Over 1,200 people signed an online petition and shared remembrances about the store.
Despite overwhelming support to save the building, it was demolished in June by the owner. At present time, there are no laws protecting historic buildings in Cherokee County. The Historical Society is a nonprofit organization dedicated to historic preservation and education, and we will continue to campaign for stronger measures to safeguard the historic landmarks that define Cherokee County. To support the Historical Societys efforts, please join/donate at RockBarn.org, or call 770-345-3288.