Amenities and Features
- half-acre park
- located within the Crenshaw Manor subdivision
- picnic shelter
- picnic tables
Park open daily from dawn to dusk.
Alcoholic beverages are prohibited.
Smoking is limited to parking areas only.
Use of personal grills (gas and/or charcoal) is prohibited.
Dogs must be on a leash. Also, please clean up after your dog. Dog waste receptacles and bags are provided.
Plummer Park, 965 Wynd Jones in Wake Forest, was acquired by the Town of Wake Forest in 1988 and was named after Thomas Plummer Jones. However, it not clear if it is named for the father (Sr) or the son (Jr). The Park is located on the original 1400-acre farm owned by the Crenshaw family.
Plummer Park itself is on a parcel designated with a well on it. It may be a spring since the area all around the park is rather wet. A gazebo on the property marks the location of the well. According to a long-lost sign from the park, the well may have supplied the original 1400-acre farm with water. A rock under the gazebo has TB Nowell inscribed on it and is dated May 8, 1936. I could not find any significance of that date or name in my research. In 2006 or 2007, Andrew Hale from Boy Scout Troop 5 constructed a picnic shelter in the park as part of an Eagle Scout project. Andrew Hale’s father Matthew emailed me and let me know that there was an article about it in the Wake Weekly and a short clip in the News and Observer. At that time there was a large metal tank on the site that had to be removed. Part of the concrete cradle for that tank because the base for the sign. He also indicated that there was an active spring near the shelter, which is where I’m assuming the gazebo is now.
Thomas Plummer Jones (Sr.), son of Joseph Broomfield and Lucy (Plummer) Jones was born December 15, 1865, at “Park Cottage,” Warren County, and died at his home” Crenshaw Hall,” Wake County, July 21, 1937.
Mr. Jones (Sr.) was one of the county’s largest planters and was active in farming until a few weeks before his death. His wife, who was Miss Mattie Marvin Williams before their marriage had six children; three sons, William Martin Jones, Edward B. Jones, and Thomas (Tom) Plummer Jones Jr., and three daughters: Mrs. Charles Macon, Mrs. J.B. Ellis, and Mrs. R. G. Winn. All were from Wake Forest.
Thomas Plummer Jones, who had a large family connection in Warren County, was reared in the Sandy Creek section of Warren County where he lived until his family moved to Wake Forest. He and Mattie Marvin Williams were married in 1896 and lived in Warren County until 1910. When Louisa Crenshaw died in 1910, Mattie and Thomas Plummer Jones moved to Crenshaw Hall in Wake Forest.
Ms. Mattie Marvin Williams was from the local (Wake Forest) Crenshaw family. She was the great-granddaughter of Samuel and Eliza (Harris) Crenshaw. Mattie was the daughter of Sarah Norman (born 1846) and Benjamin Craven Williams who were married in the 1870s. Sarah Norman Williams was the daughter of Louisa Crenshaw. At some point Sarah was disowned by Louisa because Louisa disapproved of her husband. Sarah and Benjamin’s three children spent most of their childhood at Crenshaw Hall, until 1903 when the two older children visited their mother shortly before she died. They were subsequently disowned by their grandmother. (Wake Forest Gazette article, 9/2/2015) Mattie was the only child of Sarah’s to inherit any of the Crenshaw property. Mattie remodeled Crenshaw Hall and it was featured in a Better Homes and Garden magazine article at the time. When she took it over, the farm was a cotton farm. [From June 19, 2008, article Wake Weekly]. According to the Wake County Register of Deeds, in August 1914, an agreement between TP Jones and Mattie W Jones and Louise N Williams was drawn up such that the Jones’s would NOT file a caveat to the will of L.J. Crenshaw, and Louise N. Williams, and Louise N Williams conveyed all her right, title and interest in that estate to the Jones in exchange for a home as good or better than previously furnished as long as Louise should live. There are many more real estate actions recorded in the register of deeds with Thomas Plummer Jones (aka T Plummer Jones, and/or TP Jones in addition to Mattie W Jones). Mattie Jones passed away on or about July 18, 1961.
Thomas (Tom) Plummer Jones Jr was born in 1903 and passed after 1989 (not sure when). The Zebulon Record dated Friday April 24, 1942, lists his draft number on page 6 but it’s not known whether he Was activated to fight in World War II. “One or four children, Jones went to Western North Carolina in the 1920s to attend Mars Hill, which was a junior college at the time. After two years, he returned to attend Wake Forest University, according to Jody Totten, Jones’ first cousin…. He was quite a sportsman…Evidently he was on the basketball team up in Mars Hill.” (News and Observer article, July 6, 2016, Wake Forest business owners find letters from the 1920s in Old Trunk.) Tom had a love for dogs. Mention was made in a Wake Forest 27587 Magazine (Winter 2015) That he had a hunting dog named Spot at one time. Tom Jones Jr lived at Crenshaw Hall with brother Martin his entire life (neither married). Martin inherited the house and 100 acres when Mattie died, and he left his portion to Tom when he died in 1986.
In his later years, his Aunt Louise (sister to Mattie) gave him a “nice but very frisky” black lab puppy for companionship …. named, oddly, Snow White. In Aunt Lou’s waning years, Snow White took to barking one night, she said, alerting the family to what turned out to be a gas leak. The three (Aunt Lou, Tom, and Martin) were known as very cheerful people. “Tom was frugal at home but a spender otherwise…. Tom grew most of the vegetables (for the three of them) in the “low ground”. Aunt Lou froze what they didn’t eat. Tom stocked the cellar for winter with root vegetables bought cheaply from farmers after their primary crop was harvested. … Lou paid for groceries, Tom paid for the utilities, and Martin paid to maintain the house. (Quote from Jody Totten in article).
Prior to the Town’s ownership, developer Steve Gould owned the property. Steve Gould developed Crenshaw Hall subdivision. In addition to being a developer, Steve had a passion for maintaining the history of the Crenshaw Hall plantation and knew quite a bit about the property. “This was known as the thousand-acre farm…It stretched from Richland Creek to Tyler Run.” (Wake Weekly, Sep 3, 1998, article). At one point, Gould intended to video tape a tour of the property led by a nurse who took care of Tom and Martin Jones in their later years (I never did determine if this occurred). In addition to honoring one of the Jones’s it’s probably the case that the wetness of the land prevented building any house on that parcel.
Researched and written by Janet Lowe, Wake Forest Parks, Recreation, and Cultural Resources Advisory Board
Wake County Register of Deeds – online search using TP Jones, Plummer Jones, Plummer, Thomas Plummer
- 03/26/1912 TP Jones was sold a piece of property by 3 Robbins’. Three acres were set aside for a school site, from that property, but not sure exactly where that was?
- In 1913 the Holdings sold proper to TP Jones:
- 3/7/1913 – TP Jones (agent) obtained property adjacent to the WF cemetery
- 1/11/1913 – TP Jones agent .86 acres Main and Foundry Street (Dunn’s corner)
- 8/18/1913 – Section in Rolesville
- 8/8/1913 – TP Jones agent purchased land along South Main Street.
- 11/14/1913 – purchase of property – eastern boundary was Brooks Street; northern boundary was Owen Street.
- 12/1/1913 – Chapel Hill Road (Maiden Lane) property
- 1/12/1914 – 41.5 acres was purchased as TP Jones, Agent. However, due to a default on a mortgage, TP Jones sold some property to Louise N (Norman) Williams.
- 8/5/1914 – Agreement between TP Jones and Mattie W. Jones, and Louise N. Williams (mentioned above)
- 4/17/1917 – E.J. Scarborough and Jennie Scarborough Trust entered an indenture with TP Jones and Mattie W Jones. Total acreage was approximately 200 acres.
- 4/20/1917 – T Plummer Jones and Mattie W Jones deeded a lot as described in the book of maps 1911 page 49 to Jos Blount Cheshire, Bishop of North Carolina, Charles E Johnson and William H Williamson, Trustees of the Diocese of North Carolina. [I’m assuming this was to the Episcopal Church, as Mr. Jones was a lifelong member of that church.]
- 9/24/1917 – TP Jones and Mattie W Jones sold 1 million feet of pine timber growing in Wake Forest on both sides of Richland Creek to A.M. Harris.
- 1933 Mattie W Jones leased some land to the Texas Company for purposes of selling gasoline, for a period of 5 years. See the Lease and agreement in the ROD.
- 1939 – Upon passing of Louisa J. Crenshaw, Mattie w Jones annexed a designated piece of land. W. Martin Jones, E.B. Jones and T.P. Jones witnessed the transaction. All 3 men were unmarried at that time.
- 1954 – Mattie Jones (widow) W. Martin Jones, Edward B. Jones and Beatrice B. Jones signed over a deed to Thomas Plummer Jones. It was possibly a split of Mattie W Jones property. Only 1.12 acres around the intersection of US 1 and NC 98.
- Book of Maps in Wake County 1911 page 49 referred to the deed in 1962. See scanned (poor quality) image. Mrs. TP Jones Estate, 5/2/1962. (On the map it states Book 1962 page 227)
- From 1968 to 1972, TP Jones sold a lot of lots in a neighborhood (Crenshaw Hall subdivision?). in 1974 he registered a survey.
- In 1970 the three brothers surviving Mattie Jones, appeared to release all interest in tracts or parcels of land related to an area, but not sure exactly were. Deed reference 1539 – 156.
- Town of Wake Forest acquired the parcel of the park in May 1988
There are also maps scanned in 1980 (Wake County Map 217-1) and 1989 (Wake County Map 216-13). In the 1989 map you can see the parcel that has the well indicated on it (has a circle marked on the lot).
- Wake Forest Gazette 3/25/2015 Crenshaw Hall falls on hard times
- Wake Forest Gazette 9/2/2015 Crenshaw Hall will be funeral home
- News and Observer 7/6/2016 Wake Forest Business Owners Find Letters from the 1920s In Old Trunk
- Wake Weekly 6/19/2008 article about Crenshaw Hall and referenced Better Homes and Garden magazine
- Wake Weekly, 9/3/1998 article about Steve Gould
- June 25, 26, 27 1872 Commencement flier provided by Jody Totten (Crenshaw folder at Historical Museum)
- Wake Forest 27587 Magazine, Winter 2015 edition.
- The Warren Record July 23, 1937, and July 30, 1937