Alabama has many old plantations with a rich history, going back
to the early 19th century. Most of those places lost their original
purpose a long time ago - the vast fields where people used to
grow cotton were transformed into destinations of leisure and
tourism. Many of those plantations are very well preserved and
some in fact were turned into museums. Visiting such places can
be a really original way to spend your weekend away.
Belvoir / Saffold Plantation
Belvoir (Saffold Plantation)
Belvoir was established in 1825 as a large cotton plantation.
The house, as it is seen on the plantation grounds at present,
was built around 1850. After the Civil War the property changed
hands several times and in the second half of the 20th century
it was in a state of disrepair. In 1990 it was added to the Alabama
Register of Landmarks and Heritage and has since been repaired
and renovated. "Belvoir" translates from French to English
as "beautiful to see" - and so it is now.
This plantation was set up in 1843 and named after a Roman god
of forests and fields. Shortly after Faunsdale's founding, a wooden
church was built on its grounds. A burial site was also opened
near the church and survived to this day. The main house on this
plantation is a fine example of the Greek Revival style and is
located behind a peaceful grove of trees, along with some other
Montgomery Janes Whittaker House
The plantation boasts a historic Federal style house, currently
turned into a museum. The construction of this house was started
in 1822 and took 20 years to finish. The building is a fine display
of various, inter-crossing styles of architecture, including Colonial
and Greek Revival. In 1974 the house was listed on the National
Register of Historic Places; since 2007 the Autauga County Heritage
Association has owned it and now the Montgomery Janes Whittaker
House welcomes guests from all over the country.
Woodlands (Gosport, Alabama)
The Woodlands Plantation is also known as the Frederick Blount
Plantation. It was set up in the 1840s. The house on the plantation
grounds is a good example of a 'Carolina Cottage' style. The tranquil
location and quaint surroundings are one of the greatest assets
of this place. The Woodlands Plantation was added to the National
Register of Historic Places in 1980.
Joseph Wheeler Plantation
This plantation is one of the oldest in Alabama, dating back
its origin to year 1818. There are twelve historical structures
on the plantation grounds, all built between 1818 and 1880. After
the Civil War the plantation belonged to a former Confederate
general, Joseph Wheeler, who built his house there, adjacent to
the other buildings. The plantation belonged to the Wheeler family
until 1993, when it was donated to the state of Alabama.
Alpine plantation contains a historical house, built in 1858.
Surrounded by mature oaks and other trees, the plantation house
boasts some fine ornaments of the Greek Revival style and contains
more interesting architectonic features inside. The area surrounding
the house emanates tranquillity and peace.
As you can see the Alabama plantations hold a special part of
U. S. history. These plantation homes represent not only life
in the South during simpler times but a culture that needs to
be remembered for many generations to come.