you're reading...

Cornelius News

Cornelius families treasure that beautiful farmhouse on Meta

Rebecca Carr, Jerry Carr and Kim Sailors

By Dave Vieser. Before Cornelius was a lake town, it was a mill town and before that a farming community centered on large working farms and churches like Bethel Presbyterian and Mt. Zion United Methodist.

With so much development under way, the icons of Cornelius’ agrarian past are disappearing.

While it’s almost certain the old Alexander homestead will disappear, members of the Carr and Sailors families are making sure the classic white farmhouse on Meta Road will stand proud for years to come.

The casually elegant 2,800-square-foot home is used as an office by  semi-retired businessman Jerry Carr, a former owner of Badger Sportswear.

It was the old Bustle family homestead, the centerpiece of a working farm. Nearby Bustle Road gets its name from this old Cornelius family.

It’s exquisitely restored with perfect hardwood floors, formal rooms and a carefully updated country casual kitchen. The house sits on more than nine acres, complete with an extensive family garden with brussels sprouts and collards right now.

Daughter Kim Sailors, with her husband Mark, co-founded The TopDeck Foundation with Bridgett and Don Rainey. TopDeck’s newest fundraising campaign, “We Got Your Back,” will provide new, lighter-weight body armor for Cornelius Police officers.

“The reason my father actually chose this house was because he wanted some land to be able to have a garden. The house was an added bonus,” Kim says.

Sailors lived in the home from 1999 to about 2003. Although it’s been renovated, the house retains such original details as push button light switches.

Saturdays in the fall are special days at the house. “We entertain here for football on Saturdays when we are not at an Alabama home football game,” Sailors says. The whole family looks after the extensive gardens.

“We spend a lot of family time together doing that.”

Sailors and her mom, Rebecca Carr, enjoy cooking fresh, chemical-free garden vegetables. “There’s nothing like home-grown tomatoes from our organic garden for sauce or peas or butterbeans to go with our nightly dinners,” Sailors says.

A favorite family recipe is chicken and dumplings. “Both of my grandmothers had these for us every holiday and to this day, we love making them on the holidays. “Making the dough from scratch as well as the broth reminds me of true love! The conversations and laughter that came out of the kitchen really makes me smile when I remember them as I cook them now.”

The Sailors children enjoy having “the nine acres of land to ride the four wheelers and gator around.” Rebecca and Jerry Carr live on Peninsula Point, while the Sailors family lives on Jetton Road.

Will this rich piece of Cornelius’ history disappear in the near future? Not a chance, according to Sailors. “This house will stay in our family forever… it is a peaceful piece of property that we can all enjoy.”