A historic gem at ncma winston-salem

The House Hose Built

Nestled on the scenic grounds of the North Carolina Museum of Art, Winston-Salem (formerly SECCA) stands a 1929 English-style mansion that once belonged to James G. Hanes. Built as the country home of the textile industrialist and civic leader, the Hanes House became the unlikely home of NCMA Winston-Salem, or the “Winston-Salem Gallery of Fine Arts” as it was originally named, when Hanes bequeathed the house and grounds to the gallery upon his passing in 1972.

Since 1977, the Hanes House has welcomed visitors into its wood-paneled rooms for warm conversations, dinner parties, and late-night gatherings. Reimagined in 2023 with a renewed vision and fresh design, the Hanes House weaves new narratives with diverse perspectives through intimate and communal experiences with the visual, musical, and culinary arts.


As the largest space in the historic mansion, the living room is the heart of the Hanes House. The living room boasts a green marble fireplace and ornate pine molding that was hand-carved by a skilled German craftsman who lived on-site during the home’s construction.

In another time, the living room entertained the likes of Dwight D. Eisenhower and Richard Nixon. These days, visitors are more likely to encounter intimate artist talks, chef’s table dinners, or lively musical performances.

Living Room

The library was the favorite room of Mr. Hanes, and many of our modern-day guests feel the same. Paneled in solid mahogany, the library contains a hidden door, prohibition-era wet bar, and a half dozen secret compartments (that we’re aware of).

In 1985, the library was dedicated to Dock Grier, Mr. Hanes’ chauffeur, butler, and confidant. The intimate room is an ideal space for spirited conversation, deep focus, or a drink among friends.

The Library

What originally served as a large bedroom for Mr. and Mrs. Hanes has since been reimagined as an airy space for meetings and business dealings. The Hanes’ elegant tastes can still be seen in three delicately hand-painted tiles adorning the room’s white marble fireplace.

A large south-facing window garners ample natural light, making the boardroom particularly well-suited for discussing your next business venture or art acquisition.


The two-tiered terrace of the Hanes House overlooks a vast lawn leading down to a spring-fed lake. Arguably the premier space for gatherings and celebrations, the terrace blends the beauty of nature with the comfort of modern furnishings for a breathtaking, unparalleled setting.

From weddings and dinner parties to concerts and cocktail socials, the terrace may be the perfect locale for your next party.


Moments in Hanes History

c. 1900

In 1900, brothers John Wesley Hanes (pictured) and Pleasant Henderson Hanes sold their tobacco business to R. J. Reynolds Tobacco and invested their profits in two new separate textile companies.

c. 1903

After the death of his father John Welsey Hanes in 1903, James G. Hanes took the helm of Shamrock Mills. He found the company debt-ridden but within five years helped the company become solvent and renamed it "Hanes Hosiery Mills."


In 1918, the company expanded its product line to include women's socks. In 1938, Hanes introduced nylon into their hosiery and became the first company to start producing pantyhose in the 1960s. With a massive manufacturing facility in downtown Winston-Salem, Hanes became recognized as the world's largest producer of women's seamless nylon hosiery.

c. 1928

In 1928, renowned architects Peabody, Wilson, and Brown began designing an English Hunting Lodge style home for James G. Hanes, an avid hunter, fisherman and polo enthusiast.

c. 1945

James G. Hanes is credited with the company’s famous advertising tagline, “Nature gives you seamless legs. Hanes gives you seamless nylons.”

c. 1949

Ralph Philip Hanes Jr. (“Phil”) returned to Winston-Salem to work in the family business in 1949 after graduating from Yale. A major supporter of the arts, he was appointed to the National Endowment for the Arts council by president Lyndon B. Johnson in 1965 alongside John Steinbeck, Duke Ellington, and Harper Lee. He donated the land that became Stone Mountain State Park to the state of North Carolina.

c. 1950

James G. Hanes served as a city alderman from 1917 to 1921, as mayor of Winston Salem from 1921 to 1925, and as Chairman of the Forsyth County Commissioners for 22 years.

c. 1962

In 1965, James G. Hanes Jr. ("Gordon"), the son of James G. Hanes, Sr., oversaw the merger of Hanes Hosiery Mills and P.H. Hanes Knitting Company into the Hanes Corporation, now known as HanesBrands Inc.

c. 1964

Gordon Hanes and his wife Helen Greever Copenhaver "Copey" Hanes were active in the arts across the state and made numerous gifts to the North Carolina Museum of Art in Raleigh. As a state senator, Gordon introduced legislation to create a state conservatory for the arts, now known as UNC School of the Arts.

c. 1972

James G. Hanes, Sr. passed away in 1972 having stipulated that his house and the surrounding 32 acres be used for the appreciation of art in a home-like surrounding.

c. 1977

After several years of planning, renovation, and construction, SECCA relocated from Old Salem to the country estate James G. Hanes in 1977.

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A Place to Unwind