Durden House, Circa 1900, Cobbtown

This well-maintained Folk Victorian in Cobbtown was built circa 1900. Its fascinating story was shared with me by Hudak Hendrix, the son of owner Mary Joyce Durden Hendrix.

The Durden House was purchased by Lester Eason and Louvenia Youmans Durden sometime in the early 1930’s.  The family had moved to Cobbtown in the late 1920’s.  According to family lore, the move from Norristown in Emanuel County was prompted by an incident that had occurred at a local baseball game where Mr. Durden’s father, John Fitzgerald Durden, Emanuel County Tax Collector, was attacked by a man with a knife.  His son rose to his defense and beat the attacker with a baseball bat.  Later, the man died from his injuries.  Apparently, the families decided that the best course of action would be for my grandfather to take his family to Cobbtown to provide some distance and minimize the possibility of further aggressions.

While the Durden family had two children, Tom and Nannie Lou, upon their arrival to Cobbtown, another son, Lamar Eason,  was born during their brief stay in the Coleman Hotel in December of 1929.  Later, after the family purchased the Durden House, two more children, Kenneth Lawson Durden(1932) and Mary Joyce Durden (1934), were born.  Mary Joyce (Durden) Hendrix currently lives in the house.

While in Cobbtown, Mr. Durden operated a “rolling store” throughout the local area of northern Tattnall County while Mrs. Durden was a cook at the Cobbtown School that was located across the street from the Durden House until a lightning strike in 1968 caused a fire which burned the school.  

Originally, the house included several acres of land that stretched down Railroad Street to the corner of Collins Street but over the the years, several parcels were distributed to family members who built houses that remain under the ownership of direct descendants of the original family

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