Category Archives: –TROUP COUNTY GA–

Hills and Dales Estate, 1916, LaGrange

Fuller & Ida Cason Callaway’s Hills and Dales Estate is one of the great landscape and architectural treasures of Georgia, not to be missed. Ferrell Gardens, from which the property evolved, was established in the 1840s and developed and nurtured over decades. Owned by Judge Blount Coleman Ferrell (January 1816-19 September 1908) and his wife (and double first cousin) Sarah Coleman Ferrell (October 1817-7 December 1903), the gardens were the creation and domain of “Miss Sarah”, as Mrs. Ferrell was affectionately known. They are characterized by boxwood parterres formally set into a gently sloping terrain.

During the time of the Ferrells, the gardens were open to the public and were nationally known. They were even the setting of a novel, Vesta, written by Sarah’s sister, Florida P. Reed, in 1894.

It is considered one of the best preserved 19th century gardens in the United States and is a masterwork of landscape architecture.

Fuller Callaway, who spent time in the gardens with “Miss Sarah” as a boy, purchased the property in 1912 from the Ferrell estate and commissioned Neel Reid and Hal Hentz of the firm of Hentz, Reid, and Adler to design a home that would be worthy of the surrounding landscape.

The end result was this 13,000-square-foot mansion, inspired by the work of Charles Adams Platt and designed to complement the gardens. The Callaways named the estate Hills and Dales, for its sunny hills and shady dales.

Dwarf English Boxwood (Buxus sempervirens ‘Suffruticosa’) is the signature plant in Ferrell Gardens.

Other species include American Boxwood, Tree Boxwood, Spanish Boxwood, and Curly Leaf Boxwood.

There are over 2 1/2 acres of boxwood parterres on the grounds.

A few other iconic species present include: China Fir, Tea Plant, Southern Magnolia, Gingko, Camellia, Banana Shrub, and Tea Olive.

This hedge spells out the word GOD.

In addition to the boxwood parterres, flowering plants can be found in season scattered around the estate.

The gardens have brought much joy in their nearly two centuries of existence and show no signs of slowing down.

Ida Cason Callaway and her daughter-in-law Alice Hand Callaway would be very proud of the legacy they have left behind.

Upon Ida’s death in 1936, her son Fuller Jr. and his wife, Alice Hand Callaway, moved into the home and raised their family here.

After Fuller Jr.’s death in 1992, Alice spent much of her time restoring the house and maintaining the gardens.

It was their wish that the property, while remaining in the family, would be open to the public, and since Alice’s death in 1998, that vision has become reality.

Thanks are due to Mark McDonald of the Georgia Trust for Historic Preservation, Hills and Dales Executive Director Carleton B. Wood, and all the wonderful staff, for making my visit such a memorable experience. If you haven’t been to Hills and Dales, you should seriously consider a visit. There’s nothing else like it in Georgia.

Vernon Road Historic District, National Register of Historic Places

Traylor House, Circa 1832, Long Cane

This is one of the oldest surviving houses in the Long Cane community, which was settled around the time of the 1827 land lottery. I believe it was built by George Hamilton Traylor and was subsequently the home of his son, John Thomas Traylor.

The dominant architectural style of the house is Federal, but as 1832 is relatively late in the Federal period, the transition to the Greek Revival is evident. It is beautifully proportioned example, anchored by a large tetrastyle portico.

Thanks to Kaye Minchew for her assistance in helping me locate the house via the Troup County Archives.

Long Cane Historic District, National Register of Historic Places

Long Cane Baptist Church, 1830s, Troup County

The Long Cane Baptist Church was constituted in 1829 by Reverend James Reeves. It was a union of Baptists and Presbyterians. The structure, still in use today, was erected in the mid-1830s and still retains its slave gallery, where enslaved people worshiped until the Civil War. The Presbyterians continued to worship here with the Baptists until forming their own congregation, Loyd Presbyterian, in 1887.

Long Cane Historic District, National Register of Historic Places

 

 

Eclectic Victorian House, West Point

This house, though decidedly Victorian in appearance, appears to be of earlier [probably antebellum] construction; hence my identification as an Eclectic Victorian. It’s possible that it was a Plantation Plain that was expanded later; it features nine-over-nine windows and the entryway has a transom and sidelights. I hope to learn more about it and will update it when I do. It’s an impressive house.

Miller-Price House, Circa 1875, West Point

This transitional Greek Revival-Victorian cottage was built for Alva C. Miller. It was purchased and restored by Miss Gladys Ozley in 1935.

 

Cobb-Ingram House, 1919, West Point

Neel Reid, one of Georgia’s most important 20th century architects, designed this home for local Coca-Cola bottler and distributor George Cobb in 1919. It has been owned by the Ingram family since 1974.

Lanier-Parr House, 1910, West Point

This home was built by Will Lanier, son of Elijah Frank Lanier and president of the Bank of West Point. His wife, Charlie Belle Collins Lanier, was a first cousin of Philip Trammell Shutze, one of Georgia’s most notable 20th century architects. The Lanier family were among the earliest investors in the local textile industry and had interests in banks and other businesses.

Lanier Building, 1884, West Point

When constructed by brothers Lanier and Ward Crockett Lanier in 1884, this commercial block was the tallest building in town, at three stories. A bank and several other businesses occupied the first floor. The general offices of the West Point Manufacturing Company were located on the second floor until the 1950s. The third floor served as the city’s 600-seat opera house; it was destroyed by a tornado on 28 March 1920 and was never rebuilt.

West Point Commercial Historic District, National Register of Historic Places

 

Bank of West Point, 1907

Presently being renovated, the old Bank of West Point building is typical of small town banks in the first decade of the 20th century.

West Point Commercial Historic District, National Register of Historic Places

LaGrange City Hall, 1926

Architect Otis Clay Poundstone was in partnership with the Atlanta firm of T. F. Lockwood at the time he designed LaGrange City Hall. The Alabama native designed numerous public buildings in Georgia, including several in Cedartown.

LaGrange Commercial Historic District, National Register of Historic Places