Church Accepting Bids on Historic Downtown Grapevine Homes

The historic H.L. Forbes home is one of two properties the First United Methodist Church in Grapevine is taking bids on.

If you’ve always loved the shopping and dining in downtown Grapevine, a local church is unloading two historic homes within walking distance to raise funds.

First United Methodist Church in Grapevine announced this month that it would take bids on the historic H.L. Forbes house and the J.K. Buckner house. Both are on College Street, and both have been used by the church for offices and meeting space, and as a thrift shop, respectively.

The Forbes House, located at 302 W. College, was the home of Harvey Forbes, according to background from a recent Candlelight Tour of Historic Homes held annually in the city. Forbes was born in 1888 and was a successful farmer.

Upon his marriage to Judie Byas in 1918, they bought more than 100 acres and built the house a few years later (after first living in a three-room house).

Forbes was seen as something of an early adopter of whatever new technology came along. They had a windmill and an overhead tank to provide running water in the house and their barn — and they also had electricity.

“They bought an electric Maytag washing machine, freeing Judie from the washboard, and had an electric radio, which all the neighbors enjoyed listening to at the Forbes home,” literature from a recent candlelight tour of historic homes related.

The home was built around 1924, and was moved from the farm in Colleyville to its present site by the church in 1997 to prevent it from being demolished, the church said.

The one-and-a-half story, 2,230-square-foot home has two bedrooms upstairs, and the current downstairs configuration has large open spaces, two restrooms, a dine-in kitchen, enclosed back porch, and a semi-converted garage.

First United Methodist Church-Grapevine is also accepting bids for the J.K. Buckner home.

The J.K. Buckner house, located at 314 W. College, was used until recently as the church’s thrift shop. It was built in 1895, according to tour literature. The one-story home appears to be an L-shape from the street but is actually a cruciform-plan with intersecting gable roofs on a north/south axis and an extended design toward the east, making an aerial view look like a cross, or cruciform.

“The interior features heavily milled trim around tall windows and transformed doors, baseboards, and moldings,” the literature said.

The house has 1,320 square feet of living space, one bathroom, and a detached garage.

The house was the home of Jerome Kirby Buckner, one of the early owners of the property. He and W.D. Deacon established the B&D Feed Mill in 1933. In the late 1930s, the Buckners relocated their family grocery business to Main Street and added a dry goods and hardware department. In 1940, he built the still-thriving Palace Theater on Main Street.

He was also an early booster of Grapevine, helping the town start its cantaloupe festival.

Both homes feed into Grapevine-Colleyville ISD (Cannon Elementary, Grapevine Middle School and Grapevine High School).

Although the church hasn’t offered any interior photos of the home, a slideshow in a Fort Worth Star-Telegram story about the candlelight tour does provide glimpses. Those interested in putting a bid in, or who are just jonesing for a look-see, can attend one of the two open houses the church is offering to show the properties on Wednesday, Aug. 2, or Saturday, Aug. 12. Both opportunities are from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

There is no starting bid, and the sales will be handled via sealed bid. Written sealed bids for the properties must be at the church no later than noon on Aug. 24, and can be brought to the church’s business office at 422 Church St.

More details on the bid process can be obtained from the business administrator, Marcus Bellamy, at  817-481-2559 or marcusb@fumcg.org.

“We voted at a Church Conference that the proceeds from the sale of these properties would go to seed the further renovation and development of our church properties,” the church said in its announcement.