Julia Elizabeth Cobb was born on January 27, 1947 to Ira and Frances Cobb of Avondale Estates. She attended Avondale High School and later studied at Brenau University, where she was a member of the Alpha Chi Omega sorority.
Julie’s father was a builder in East Atlanta and she inherited his architectural talent. In 1976, while she was still in her 20’s, Julie and her late husband, Billy Pettit, saved the historic Laboon house in downtown Monroe from demolition and moved it to its current home in Youth. Here she later opened Antiques at Seven Gables, had a yearly tour of homes and hosted a crafts festival with many vendors and visitors each summer.
In 1994 Julie married the late Randy Weaver, a Monroe jeweler who shared her love of old houses, antique furniture and gardening. Together they purchased the old Piermont Inn in Highlands, NC and spent their weekends restoring this historic inn with dreams of opening a bed and breakfast. Today it is known as the Piermont Cottage and is part of the Old Edwards Inn in downtown Highlands.
Julie and Randy resided in another old home built at the turn of the century just outside of Madison. They worked together at The Highland Cottage in downtown Monroe, where Randy operated his jewelry business and Julie sold antiques. Julie served on the board of the Historical Society of Walton County for several years.
In addition to her passion for old buildings and old things, Julie loved to travel. She and Randy were frequent visitors to the coast of Georgia, where Randy grew up fishing as a child. Julie visited Merida, Mexico after reading a travel article about the city and was so enamored with the architecture and people of the colonial city that she purchased a home there. She refurbished and furnished this home, working with local subcontractors and vendors, despite the fact that she knew very little Spanish. She also visited Budapest, Hungary with an old grammar school friend, and the two of them bought an old apartment in the city which they restored together after Randy’s passing in 2016.
Julie’s final restoration project was an old home in Sparta, purchased from the Georgia Trust for Historic Preservation with another dear friend. At the age of 70 she was still climbing ladders and hanging sheetrock, intent on restoring this historic home to its former glory.
Julie was determined and the words “I Can’t” were not in her vocabulary. She always had a project and always had a plan. If she wanted to accomplish something, she found a way to do it. A friend once joked that Julie could see an old 2×4 sticking out of the ground and turn it into a grand mansion. She had the uncanny ability to look at dilapidated house, infested with termites, the walls falling in, and to visualize what it could become. Then she found a way to bring that vision to life. She saw beauty in old, forgotten houses and could not bear the thought of them being torn down.
In 2017 a stroke left her paralyzed on her right side and took away her ability to find her words. She did not let this encumber her, however, and lived independently the last two years of her life. She faced each day with optimism and a positive outlook that amazed her friends and family, right up until her death on August 2, 2021.
Julie is survived by her daughter, Jennifer Pettit Mata and her spouse, Benjamin Mata; her son, Michael Pettit; and five beloved grandchildren, Sarah Beth and Boone Hood, and Emma, Carley and Lindsay Pettit.
There will be a celebration of Julie’s life on Saturday, August 14 at the Cottages on Mergendollar at 1651 Mergendollar Road in Good Hope, Georgia from 1 pm to 3 pm.
Reposted courtesy of Tim Stewart Funeral Home.