Historical Homes in Mississippi
Take a tour of Mississippi’s historical homes and immerse yourself in American history. You'll find numerous antebellum homes in varying architectural styles in Natchez, including Longwood, the largest octagonal house in North America. You can also visit Beauvoir, the Biloxi home of Confederate president Jefferson Davis; Rowan Oak, the Oxford home of writer William Faulkner; and the Tupelo birthplace of Elvis Presley before his amazing home of Graceland.
Natchez is noted among America's historic cities for its wealth of historically significant antebellum architecture. You can tour the magnificent antebellum homes and opulent mansions that stand centre stage on the Natchez Historic City Tour. The guide will show you over 50 antebellum homes and churches on a 10-mile odyssey through this historic river city. Or for something a bit different why not enjoy the romance of Natchez at night. Take a horse-drawn carriage tour around beautiful antebellum homes and historical downtown Natchez.
Explore Biloxi, rich in history. See Beauvoir, the stunning home of the only President of the Confederate States of America, Jefferson Davis, and the place where he penned his memoirs. The 51-acre estate, fronting the Gulf of Mexico, was also once the site of the Mississippi Confederate soldiers’ home, which cared for hundreds of Southern veterans and their wives. The beautifully restored Beauvoir house, dominates the sprawling complex that includes a gift shop, historic cemetery, the Tomb of the Unknown Confederate Soldier and the magnificent view of the Mississippi Sound. Beauvoir truly lives up to her name, French for ‘beautiful view’ or ‘beautiful to see’.
Visit Rowan Oak, which became home to Nobel Prize winning author William Faulkner in 1930. Faulkner christened the house “Rowan Oak” after the legend of the Rowan tree, believed by Celtic people to harbour magic powers of safety and protection. While residing there with his family, he wrote such masterpieces as As I Lay Dying, Absalom, Absalom!, Light in August, and A Fable. Rowan Oak, built by Robert Sheegog in 1848, remained home to Faulkner until his death in 1962. The house is now owned by the University and maintained for memorial and educational purposes.
Built in 1859 by William Turner, architect of the University’s Lyceum, Cedar Oaks is a Greek revival structure that has survived a tumultuous past. Molly Turner Orr gathered a fire brigade to save the home in 1864, set aflame by occupying Union troops. Nearly a century later Cedar Oaks was moved 2.2 miles from it’s original location to survive business development. Presently, the home is maintained by the Oxford-Lafayette Historic Homes, Inc., and is available by reservation for civic clubs, teas, receptions, weddings, and tours.
A teacher and administrator at the University of Mississippi, Lucius Quintus Cincinnatus Lamar (1825–1893) lived in this home until 1888. Lamar drafted Mississippi’s 1861 Ordinance of Secession, but he is best remembered for his 1874 eulogy of Massachusetts Senator and former abolitionist Charles Sumner, which called for reconciliation between North and South. President John F. Kennedy included Lamar in his book Profiles in Courage. One of the South’s most distinguished statesmen, Lamar died while still serving on the U.S. Supreme Court. The house was purchased by the Oxford-Lafayette County Heritage Foundation and will be restored with grant money from the Save America’s Treasures program.
The birthplace of Elvis Presley in Tupelo, Mississippi is the only location in the world where you can see, feel and touch where the King of Rock & Roll began his musical journey. Only in Tupelo can you walk into the room where he breathed his first breath, take a stroll to his favourite location as a boy to relax looking over Tupelo, and experience his childhood gospel church service. See first hand how it all shaped this young boy from Mississippi into the international rock & roll music legend he is today, and before he set up home at Graceland.