By Dr. Dan L. Morrill
July 2, 1980
On February 28, 1912, the Charlotte Observer annouced that Floyd M. Simmons of the Simmons Company, a local real estate firm, had purchased a tract of land which was contiguous with Myers Park, the elegant streetcar suburb which the Stephens Company had recently begun. John Nolen (1869-1937), the landscape architect for Myers Park, also designed the Simmons developement, which was named “Hermitage Court.” 1 Hermitage Court opened on October 10, 1912. 2 Among the amenities of the suburb were massive entrance gates at either end of the boulevard. 3 “It is believed by the developers these gateways will lend a tone and exclusiveness to the suburb which could be derived in no other way, “the Charlotte Observer reported on March 21, 1912. 4 Construction of the gateways was in progress by early September 1912. 5 They were finished before the offical opening of Hermitage Court on October 10, 1912. The Charlotte Observer was expansive in its description of these edifices.
At either entrance to Hermitage Court is a handsome granite gateway, pointed with red cement mortar. The work on these was done by two Scotchmen who came here for the purpose from Aberdeen Scotland last June. On one Gate appears the inscription, ‘Ye Easte Gayte,” and on the other, “Ye Weste Gayte.” They are designed after the entrance ways to Andrew Jackson’s old home near Nashville. 6
1 Charlotte Observer (Feb. 28, 1912), p. 6.
2 Charlotte Observer (Oct. 10, 1912), p. 5.
3 For an early photograph of the western gate, see Charlotte Observer (Nov. 3, 1912), p. 9.
4 Charlotte Observer (Mar. 21, 1912), p. 6.
5 Charlotte Observer (Sept. 2, 1912), p. 5.
6 Charlotte Observer (Oct. 10, 1912), p. 5.