Wake Forest adds third day to Juneteenth Celebration, opens Ailey Young House for tours Monday afternoon

Friday, June 16, 2023 - 11:15am

The Northeast Community Coalition and the Town of Wake Forest have added a third day to their June 16-17 Juneteenth Celebration by opening the historic Ailey Young House to visitors on the Juneteenth holiday, Monday, June 19, from 1-6 p.m.

Located adjacent to the Wake Forest Cemetery at 400 N. White St., the Ailey Young House was scheduled to be open for tours Saturday afternoon, June 17, as part of the second day of Wake Forest’s Juneteenth Celebration. The festivities begin today (Friday, June 16) at 4 p.m. with a Community Gathering at Taylor Street Park, 416 N. Taylor St. However, on Thursday afternoon, organizers learned about a funeral at the cemetery on Saturday that will prevent visitors from accessing the historic home.

As a result, Juneteenth organizers agreed to open the house Monday from 1-6 p.m. Anyone interested in touring the home should note the following:

  • Tours are free and open to the public.

  • Parking is available in two lots inside the cemetery at the bottom of the main driveway.

  • Parking is not permitted along the cemetery’s main drive.

  • Visitors must walk to the house from the cemetery parking lot.

  • Due to the small size of the house, only a few visitors at a time are allowed inside.

  • The site and house are not considered accessible for wheelchair users or persons with mobility or physical disabilities. Contact Town staff at 919-435-9516 for additional information and alternatives.

The Ailey Young House is considered the oldest remaining African American historic building in Wake Forest. It has historical significance as the dwelling of Allen Young, one of the town's most important African American citizens.

Constructed as rental housing by Wake Forest College Professor William G. Simmons, the house was one of several along a stretch known as "Simmons Row." Following Professor Simmons' death, his widow sold these houses to families and subdivided the land in the area which formed the beginning of what is now known as the Northeast Community.

To learn more about the Ailey Young House, visit https://bit.ly/WFAileyYoungHouse or email Senior Planner for Historic Preservation Michelle Michael at [email protected].

For more information about Wake Forest’s 2023 Juneteenth Celebration, visit https://bit.ly/WFJuneteenth or email Tilda Caudle at [email protected].

Ailey Young House