Stately Oaks, Circa 1839, Jonesboro

This house, built by Whitmill Phillips Allen (6 November 1811-January 1868), was once the center of a plantation located four miles north of Jonesboro on the Atlanta Road. Allen sold the property to Robert McCord in 1858; McCord answered the call to Confederate service not long after settling onto the property. During the Battle of Jonesboro, Union soldiers set up camp on the grounds. The house survived the Civil War and when McCord returned home, he resumed operations of the farm, selling the property in 1879. My understanding is that the next owner was John Columbus Orr. It remained in the Orr family until Emily Orr Haynie transferred it to Historical Jonesboro, Inc. In 1972 the house was moved to its present location and is operated as a museum today. Georgia architect Edward Vason Jones was responsible for the restoration and noted of Stately Oaks: The house is a simple but well-proportioned country house done in the Greek Revival style. From the provincial quality of the details, it appears to have been built, as well as designed, by a capable but untrained carpenter-builder about the year 1840…The mass of the house is pleasing and the plan basically good, being typical of the majority of the rural Greek Revival houses throughout Georgia…

Some contend that the house was the inspiration for Tara in Gone with the Wind, though this can’t be proved since Margaret Mitchell didn’t confirm it [to my knowledge]. She would have known this house, however, and it is certainly of the type she would have drawn inspiration from when writing the book.

National Register of Historic Places

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