Preserving History through Real Estate: The Horace Bagg House

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O’Callaghan Historical Restoration & Preservation Inc aims to restore Wilmington’s heritage one house at a time. Their most recent project, restoration of the Horace Bagg House originally owned by Captain Horace Alexander Bagg in 1897, nears its completion and is available for tour and resale.

Tim O'Callaghan of O'Callaghan Historical Restoration & Preservation Inc nears completion of his most challenging project to date: restoration of the 1897 Horace Bagg House located at 114 North 6th Street in downtown Wilmington North Carolina. Since 1993 O'Callaghan has committed to restoring Wilmington's heritage one house at a time. With a historic district in Wilmington stretching over 200 blocks, this is quite the commitment.

The amount of work required by the Wilmington Historic Preservation Commission coupled with the labor required to bring the Horace Bagg House up to 2006 codes were the main challenges in restoring this home, according to O’Callaghan.

"While it's difficult to determine the length of these restoration projects, you just have to finish one to become hooked," he said.

Most notable about the Horace Bagg House is its open L-floor plan and traditional Queen-Anne style architecture. Approaching the house, you are greeted by a wraparound porch, rebuilt and enclosed by original gingerbread trim and freshly refinished posts. Inside, original baseboards and hardwood floors have been sanded and triple stained. An original Eastlake style mirror mantel in the polygonal parlor and refinished barrel closet off the upstairs front bedroom help you step back in time to a more elegant era.

Original owner was Captain Horace Alexander Bagg, born 1828. Captain Bagg's career in Wilmington included public offices as deputy sheriff of the county, city clerk and treasure, chairman of the Board of County Commissioners, and chairman of the County Board of Education. After his death in 1910, the house was passed to his son Horace W. Bagg until 1931. The house was owned by the Bagg Family until 1957.

"Don’t let this history discourage you," said O’Callaghan. "This house has been crafted for modern life."

Each room is wired for cable, all walls are insulated, extra storage has been built-in to the pantry and bathrooms, original windows open with the ease of one finger, the metal roof has been recoated with Hydro-Stop® to prevent leaks, and two HVAC units offer flexibility for heating and air.

The Horace Bagg House is now open for tours and available for resale. For more information visit

O'Callaghan's love for historic restoration began at age twelve 12 while helping his father restore a French farmhouse in the Shenandoah Valley. Today, O'Callaghan targets historical real estate located in promising neighborhoods with sound architecture and style. The majority of these homes are dilapidated and within five years of being condemned.

O'Callaghan has worked on a total of 25 historic homes throughout Wilmington including the Thomas Craft House on 7th Street and Walnut and the Hinton House on 19th and Market. His next challenge is awaits at the Curtis Foster property located at 110 North 6th Street.

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C.B. Johnson
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