Welcome to our blog! The House in the Horseshoe, also known as the Alston House, was built in 1772 by Phillip Alston. During the American Revolution Alston proved a fiery leader for the Whig cause. In 1781 the house was the site of militia skirmish between the owner, Whig Col. Philip Alston, and Loyalist Col. David Fanning. The house still bears some the scars from this engagement. From 1798 to 1814 the House in the Horseshoe, under the name Retreat, was home to another Patriot leader and four time North Carolina governor, Benjamin Williams.