Once Grand Victorian House…

Pendleton Graves House

Sparta, GA – Driving through Hancock County on a dreary day, happened upon this Victorian.  No I didn’t go inside of this one as it’s unoccupied.  It looked kinda spooky to me, and if I’d heard a noise inside here, it would have been “RUN FORREST, RUN!” time.  In all seriousness, I see houses like this and just see the potential to be restored to it’s former grandeur.

This is known as the Pendleton-Graves House, originally built in 1820 in a much plainer style.  The upstairs of the house is only one room deep, which is in keeping with homes built at that time in our area, the “I” house as it’s sometimes called.  2 stories tall, one story deep.

It was expanded, and then given a Victorian facelift sometime around 1880. I mean, look at the octagonal spires on the roof!

I couldn’t find a lot of information on this house, but did find a photo from 1973 that shows it in better days (and way fewer paint colors) courtesy of UGA digital archives.

UGA Digital Archives


Lots of history and historic homes throughout Sparta and Hancock County, so will be sharing those here with you soon!

Nuts about Nutwood


LaGrange, GA – Why did they name this Nutwood?  What’s up with that?  I was curious, and learned that when this antebellum house was built in 1833, they planted the first pecan trees in the county here on what became a 440 acre plantation.  People made the trek to this house to look at the pecan trees!

Looking down the long driveway, it almost looks like it’s from a movie set.  When you go around the side of the house you then realize it was built in an “L” shape. A couple of the outbuildings have also survived, the kitchen building and the smokehouse.

I went to Nutwood shortly after it was sold last year and it was just under renovation to become an event facility.  Good to see a home that was once “at risk” being saved

Reynolds-Perry House, Waynesboro

Reynolds-Perry House

Waynesboro, GA – Did you know that Waynesboro is the Bird Dog Capital of the World?  Me neither!

Welcome to Waynesboro

Nor did I realize that Burke County was one of the original 8 counties when Georgia was formed.  And George Washington slept in Waynesboro.  AND this house has a tie to Washington’s visit.

The Reynolds-Perry House was built in 1824.  It has had a couple of renovations (we’re talking 1890 for the first big renovation though) and has been owned by 5 generations of the same family.

See the wood paneling in this room in the gallery below?  This wood was salvaged from the Inn that George Washington stayed at.  The Inn was demolished some time back to build a convenience store, and the owner of Reynolds-Perry was able to include this piece of local history into the house.

This is Munnerlyn House, the old Inn that George Washington stayed at in town (Courtesy Vanishing Georgia, State of Georgia Archives)



The first thing I loved about this house – the true rocking chair front porch.  That says Old South to me!  Can you imagine the conversations that have taken place in the last 190 years???

Front Porch

Once you walk in the house – you realize immediately how big this house is – deceiving from the front curb.  It’s about 3,600 SF!  The Center Hall gives you an idea of the scale of this house.

WIDE Center Hall


Violet Bank House – Griffin GA


Violet Bank in Griffin GA

Griffin, GA – This house is known as Violet Bank, had an opportunity to visit this one in the fall.  It was originally built in 1890 is a large farm house, and still has about 13 acres (including some really nice formal gardens in the back) of property despite being an “in town” location.

Gardens - Violet Bank

They say that the homeowners went to Europe in the 1920s and left they architects to turn it into a Georgian Revival Mansion.  The inspiration for the home is Hanbury Hall – located in Worcestershire (as in the sauce!), England.  Found a picture of the inspiration home and had to add this place.  Wow.


"Hanbury Hall 011" by Glen Bowman from Newcastle, England - Where was this?. Licensed under CC BY 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons - http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Hanbury_Hall_011.jpg#mediaviewer/File:Hanbury_Hall_011.jpg
“Hanbury Hall 011” by Glen Bowman from Newcastle, England

Violet Bank is a private home, so was glad to have the opportunity for a tour!

Covington Homes, Part 2 (and a 1947 unsolved murder)


Hope you had a chance to read Part 1 of the quick trip to Covington from earlier this week.  There are so many historic homes in Covington I had to split the article!  This is the Usher House, built around 1845.  One thing I learned is that many of the families on Floyd Street were related by marriages etc.  Usher House is a good example: Mrs Usher was the sister of Judge Floyd, who lived across the street.  And one of her daughters married a Henderson from across the street as well.  Can you imagine most of your family all living on the same street?


The house above is the Cook-Adams-Williams House, but it’s also known as “The Cedars”.  Built around 1880 and enlarged around 1900, it’s unusual in that it has a bayed front entrance with victorian double doors.  Kinda interesting look!


Now if you watch The Vampire Diaries, you look at the house above and say “hey, that’s Lockwood Manor!” – and yep, it sure is the location they use for it.  It’s Worthington Manor, built around 1850.  One of the highlights of the house is it’s disappearing windows – remember, way back before air conditioning folks could walk through the huge windows when they were open.  Side note: don’t even google “disappearing windows” unless you want lots of info on Microsoft Windows LOL.



This is the King House, built in 1890.  It was originally a 1 story house and a mirror image of the house across the street (see, houses looked alike back in 1890 too).  In 1930, the owners did a major restoration oft he house and added the second story.  I am curious if the windows are really low on the second floor?


Now the house above – this one has a story.  It is related to an unsolved murder from 1947!  But first, I gotta say I think this house was wanting to hide from being photographed. It’s called Magnolia Terrace for a reason – it’s got some serious old magnolia trees out front.  Originally built in 1846, it was remodeled in 1923 to the current Dutch Colonial Look.  When I think Dutch Colonial, I picture the  Amityville Horror house.

So yeah – an unsolved murder in Buckhead has a link this house.  Paul Refoule, a French artist had married Peggy Alston, the daughter of a prominent Atlanta family.  She was found in the creek behind their Buckhead home.  He was investigated and subsequently released.  He actually filed a suit against the state of Georgia for $50,000 for violating his civil rights.  Lots of 1947 newspaper articles on this and subsequent discovery that he was having an affair etc.  Reads like a soap opera.

To this day, this remains an unsolved murder.  Paul Refoule painted mural scenes in the breakfast room of this house, which was owned by the Callaway family at the time.

Lots more to Covington, and there are some cool tours offered in town.  If you live in Atlanta, it’s just 35 miles away so make the trip!