COLBERT COUNTY, ALABAMA
Contributed in 1999
by Fred Smoot
About 1840 Mr. Armstead Barton built his mansion down in the "Nation" on the Natchez Trace, near the town of Buzzard Roost. The old mansion still standing is two stories high with roof garden which was used as an observatory for watching the negros on the plantation. Underneath is a solid stone foundation. The porch is of solid stone with large columns extending to the second floor. The floors of the double parlors and hall are of solid black walnut, and at the time they were laid were two inches thick; but when the home passed out of the hands of the original owners these planks were removed, sawed in two, the one inch planks replaced and the other half sold. The floors in these rooms were laid "log cabin style" and were very attractive. The windows for these rooms cost $100 each. The timber for the mansion was selected in Mississippi and was drawn by oxen for a distance of two hundred miles and sawed by hand. Around the walls of the double parlors was a molding of pure gold leaf, which also was removed long since. There was a double winding stairs leading to the roof garden.
In its original state, the home had a very large and beautiful lawn
with box-bordered walks to the gate, a distance of a quarter mile, and
drives on each side shaded with cedars. At the rear was a barn large
enough to accommodate fifty horses. The vegetable and flower gardens
were in keeping with other surroundings. The orchard containing all
kinds of luscious fruits covered twenty acres of land.
[From: "Two Hundred Years at Muscle Shoals" by Nina Leftwich, 1935]
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