Natchez MS

Natchez, MS is such a beautiful city. The beauty lies with combination of the Mississippi River along with the Antebellum Homes it is known for. We were a week early for their annual Spring Pilgrimage, where, from March 7 to April ll, 25 of the historical homes, including those private residences not available at other times of the year, are open. We took advantage of the ones that were open, and drove by several others.

Melrose, now located in a national historical park, was built in 1849 by a lawyer and plantation owner. You are not allowed to take inside pictures at most of the homes. However, this particular one, pictures were allowed without flash. These came out better than expected for using no flash.

I love the gold leaf valances

Check out the air conditioning!

According to what the ring was, slaves knew who was being called and where to report. (Too bad our bell I used for calling the kids didn’t have that option!)

The largest outhouse we had seen prior to this was the one at Hermitage, which is a three-seater

Auburn , and 1812 mansion was not open, but was donated along with the land, for a city park.

was the most intriguing. It is the grandest octagonal house in America! It is mid-19th century Oriental style. It has the original furnishings on the basement level, which is the only completed floor.
We could not take pictures inside the basement, but the first floor, we could.
It was started just before the War Between the States, in 1860, and was never finished. Workers from the North dropped their tools where they were working and left when the war began.
Local workers were hired to complete the basement level. Mr. Nutt died in 1864, but his wife and their eight children lived in the basement until her death in 1897. The basement and each of the first two floors is 10,000 square foot. It sure did not seem that large!!
Stanton Hall is considered to be the most palatial mansion in Natchez. It was built in 1851.

Rosalie was built in 1820 at the site of the original Old Fort Rosalie

Paul decided to ring the dinner bell. He had ringing in his ears for a few hours !

Windsor Plantation
, built in 1860, is just west of Port Gibson. Another sad story of the owner dieing without enjoying his new home! In 1890 the main structure was accidentally destroyed by fire, leaving only the columns.

The Bontura home was built in 1851. It has a wonderful spot on top of a bluff overlooking the Mississippi River.

All important homes have names, but some were just not named, so they either did not have a notable past or it is just a mysterious past! This one had no signage, and no one seemed to know anything about it. It was to beautiful not to take a picture!

The home of the Barber of Natchez, the William Johnson Home, which was built and owned by a black man in 1841. He wrote diaries over 16 years of his life and includes invaluable information on antebellum Natchez history.

Among other interesting sites in Natchez, include the Temple,
and a slavery auction site at the Forks, complete with shackels!

Great eateries that we tried were the Carriage house at Stanton Hall,
The Pig Out Inn

I love the wall!
and the Isle of Capri, a casino boat had a great buffet

Port Gibson survived because General Grant declared it “too beautiful to burn”. It really does have some beautiful buildings!!

Check out this golden hand on top of the steeple.

Grand Gulf Military Monument, not far from Port Gibson had museum, campground, several out buildings. The town was originally settled in early 1700’s. In 1843, the yellow fever epidemic claimed the lives of many citizens, then a tornado ravaged the area, and ultimately the Civil War destroyed what was left.

Views from the observation tower were fantastic!

Mounds at Grand Village is located just outside Natchez. A State park, it is a time capsule for the Natchez Indians’ past.

We decided to take the Natchez Trace all the way home. I only took pictures of the sites we had not seen before, from Natchez to Jackson. (see October 08 blogs for fall pictures on the Trace) Just off the Trace near our campsite were.

Emerald Mound

Although Grand Gulf, Windsor, and Port Gibson are all just off the Trace, we visited them prior to beginning our trip home.
Other stops along the way included
Canton Home of filming of A Time to Kill, O Brother Where Art Thou, and My Dog Skip We asked about the museums and got a history but and shown the room a restaurant scene was made, but that was it. We were disappointed and determined that the museum is now defunct!

Ruins of Female Academy,

Mount Locust, restsored historic inn

, birthplace of Elvis

The thirteen upper waterspouts symbolize his life in Tupelo, the rest his life in Memphis.

We can now say we have taken the entire Trace. We just missed the spring colors… they were just beginning to come. It will not be the last time we travel on this wonderful road.

3 thoughts on “Natchez MS”

  1. What great history!
    I’ve thought about taking the Natchez the whole way, just to say we did it!
    I like the bell! Yeah, too bad we didn’t each have our own ring!

  2. Natchez, brought back great memories of the tours I took and the casino I also took for a few dollars. Keep up the great history book. Love it.

  3. Hi there!
    Love your pictures. I grew up in Natchez and wanted to add that the house "no one seemed to know anything about", is Glen Auburn. It was once owned by actor George Hamilton. I was told that he bought it for his mother though I cannot confirm. It was a bold shade of eggplant when I was young and it was my absolute favorite in town! My friend lived down the street and we'd often walk around downtown and occasionally would knock on the door of "the purple house" as we called it, in hopes that someone, anyone, would answer and we'd get to peek inside. No one ever did. (Sighs) Some time ago it was purchased by a local doctor and repainted. It will always have a very special place in my heart. Glad to see that it was photo-worthy for you. Natchez is a gem.

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