Destinations

Spring Pilgrimage to Natchez, Mississippe

Google+ Pinterest LinkedIn Tumblr

 

Take a 30-minute tour of Stanton Hall, then enjoy lunch at the adjacent Carriage House Restaurant.
Take a 30-minute tour of Stanton Hall, built in 1837 at a cost of $83,000, then enjoy lunch at the adjacent Carriage House Restaurant where I’d be every week if I lived in Natchez.

When my husband and I got married at Peachtree Golf Club in Atlanta, I told my sister-in-law our wedding would be in an antebellum home. “What’s that?” she said. As a native of California, she wasn’t familiar with the term that refers to neoclassical-style homes from before the Civil War, primarily found in the South.

Fans of the gracious architectural style and the history that goes along with the homes have to visit Natchez, Mississippi, which boasts more antebellum structures than any other place. As you may recall from your American history, many of them across the region went up in fiery blazes set by the Yankees. Our wedding venue is one of the few remaining in Atlanta. You’ve seen “Gone with the Wind” so you know what happened there.

This 30,000-square-foot octagonal home was never finished. The war began, the owner died, and his wife lived on the first floor of the uncompleted home.
This 30,000-square-foot octagonal home, known as Longwood, was never finished. The war began, the owner died, and his wife lived on the first floor of the uncompleted home. You can still see the workers’ tools left behind.

While many homes are open year-round, Natchez hosts two pilgrimages a year, in the fall and the spring, when many of the owners open their homes to visitors while costumed descendants of the original owners and family friends greet guests and regale them with intriguing stories of the homes’ history.

The Spring Pilgrimage runs from March 5 to April 5, with 24 homes available for viewing. A ticket for a single home is $18 or you can purchase a package to tour three homes for $45. Other events during the Pilgrimage include an evening of jazz, other musical performances and the Historic Natchez Tableaux, which features the history of Natchez told through music and storytelling.

Dunleith was built in 1856 and now its 40-acre grounds house a restaurant and guest accommodations. Dunleith was built in 1856 and now its 40-acre grounds house a restaurant and guest accommodations. Our guide showed us a glass pane on the side of the home where brides carve their initials.

The truly adventurous can attend “The Haunting of the Towers: A Paranormal Candlelight Tour” with the owners of this home, James and Ginger Hyland, followed by complimentary champagne and refreshments. Lucky for us, when we toured The Towers, the lights were on, all the better to see the massive and magnificent collections Ginger has amassed, including a room devoted to items from “Phantom of the Opera.”

 

 

Leave a Reply

Subscribe For Latest Updates

Signup for our blog and get notified when we publish a new one!