This Greek Revival home was built in the 1840s for Dr. William Lockhart Cowan. William Cowan and his wife, Anna, had eight children. Five of them lived to adulthood. Their second eldest daughter, Laura, married a local doctor, Dr. Robert Fleming. Fleming moved into the Cowan home. Known as a sleepwalker, he awoke one night and fell off the balcony. Paralyzed by the fall, he and his wife moved to live with his relative to get care. Her mother and sister followed them.
The family sold the home to Jacob Ramser, a Swiss craftsman. Ramser was known for his carpentry skills. He built the first theater in town.
The Ramser family lived in the home until they sold it to the White family, who turned it into a funeral home. The Colonel White and Sons Funeral Home was in business until 2004. The building has been vacant since. It is listed as an Alabama Place of Peril. It’s sustained damage from storms, and the roof has been breached.
It was documented in 1934 as part of the Historic American Building Survey. It is one of the last remaining Greek Revival homes in the area.
The Petty-Roberts House, commonly known as The Octagon House, is one of two octagon houses built in Alabama. It is the only one that still stands. The home was built between 1859 and 1861 using a method called “gravel walls,” a mixture of sand, gravel, and water. The seventeen-inch thick walls helped keep the house cool in the summer and warm in the winter. It is a three-story home with a cupola. A basement serves as a living space, too. At the time of the 1860 Slave Census, Petty enslaved two men in their thirties. I could not find any information as to where they stayed on the property.
During the Civil War, it was occupied by Union Brevet Maj. Gen. Benjamin H. Grierson. Benjamin Franklin Perry, the first owner of the home, offered it to the Union troops in hopes it wouldn’t be destroyed while the town of Clayton was occupied.
This Gothic Revival Church was completed in 1876 on land donated by Henry DeLamar Clayton, the town’s namesake and former president of the University of Alabama. It was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1995.
Built as a townhouse for John H. Miller in 1858, this Gothic Revival home was also owned by Judge Henry Clinton Russell and John Council Martin. Martin served as Clayton’s mayor from 1926-1930. It was put on the National Register of Historic Places in 1974.
When Jimmy Carter left the Navy in 1953, he and Rosalynn Carter returned to live in Plains. Since they had no guaranteed income, they applied to live in public housing. Located at the corner of Paschal and Thomas Streets, they lived in public housing Unit 9A for the first year.
For people familiar with the Sautee Nacoochee Indian Mound, they may not have seen the numerous photos from the dig. While I was familiar with the survey conducted of the mound in the early 1900s, I never thought to look at it until recently when I was trying to find information about a church in White County and stumbled across a pdf of the report.
I didn’t read the document fully, but some interesting information was in it. Dr. L. G. Hardman granted the archeologists permission for the dig only on the condition that they turned over any gold discovered to Hardman. Additionally, they could not complete the dig in 1915 and asked to return. Hardman refused to grant access to the land again.
Additionally, at least three feet had been removed from the mound that did contain skeletal remains. These were gone before the arrival of the researchers. No one could tell the researchers where the remains went.
Seventy-five skeletal remains were identified in the dig. The first set of remains was found approximately three feet down. Some, like the top photo, were found with different objects. This one is believed to have a pendant at its neck. The bottom photo shows a copper armband around the top part of the arm.
Below are images of different items found in the mound. I am particularly intrigued by the “effigies” and the heads.
There are more images in the report. I highly suggest taking a look if you want to see more.