Thursday, September 18, 2008

Drive Bys & AL History

The drive over to Leeds from our house is about 30 minutes and I've driven it many times since we've lived here. Peter's mom and Grandma Eleanor live over that way and so the main road from here to there is very picturesque and just a beautiful scenic drive. Closer into the small town of Leeds, I've passed by this house many times and noticed the historical sign out front. One recent day driving over, I noticed that the sign said that this beautiful old home is a museum, so I stopped by and took pics. It wasn't open at the time, but I walked around and got some nice photos. You can read the sign to get an idea of the history of this house.

It's a beautiful white farmhouse style home and as you can see dates back to 1863. I love to see homes like this that are restored and kept alive for future generations to enjoy.
A beautiful wooden front door greets visitors coming up the steps.
I love the sweeping front porch with 4 rocking chairs across it. I can imagine the rocking that's gone on here over the years. This house sits right on the main road going into Leeds.
Large shutters
Closeup of the beautiful door.
And the front railing of the porch.
This old brick red chimney has seen a lot of fires, I'm sure.
The little garden area to the side is very quaint too.
I thought these blue/white checked curtains were precious.
And on the back porch hangs the tools of the house, probably well used over the years.
Two outbuildings are in the back, probably a barn and maybe a tiny guesthouse, I'm using my imagination.
This old bell sits in the middle of the yard. Not sure what the significance is for it. I'll have to stop by there again one day when they're open so I can see inside this pretty place.
On down the road is another place that has caught my eye for a long time. It's called The Sonnet House and I decided to drive in there this time and take some pics. We couldn't tell what this place was, but watched as a parking lot was built and things began to change. It almost looks like a church on the lefthand side with the steeple, but then the farmhouse itself is SO pretty.
I saw they had a sign up with a website, so I checked it out and it's a special events house now. Built in 1924, it's been renovated for parties, weddings, and receptions. You can check it out here.
I'm glad I finally found out what this place is used for. It's a gorgeous piece of history too.
I've got some more fun Grandma Eleanor stories to share with you next week, as well as a peek into their attic. And I finally got a pic of the aqua chair. You will not want to miss that!
Hope you enjoyed sightseeing with me in Alabama!

Stumble Upon Toolbar

49 friends stopped by:

Layla said...

Ooooh! Thank you for posting about these great Alabama homes! I would love to see them in person sometime. The double doors on the first one make me weak in the knees.... :-)

Layla
The Lettered Cottage

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the tour, can't wait for more Grandma stories...

Have a great week-end Rhoda,
Kathy :)

ps any yardsales planned for the week-end?

Kim~"HomeIsWhereTheHeartIs" said...

What wonderful homes...thank you for sharing them with us, Rhoda!

Mrs. Trixi said...

Beautiful homes, absolutely beautiful. Thank you for sharing.

Pikes Pickles said...

Okay, you did it. I think I want to move to Alabama!

Sandi @the WhistleStop Cafe said...

We do live in a beautiful area!

Joanna said...

What lovely homes. I love those doors, they are just beautiful!

Darlene - Our Creative Life said...

Thanks Rhoda for the great Alabama photos. Made me think of my dad & grandma who are now both in heaven. Dad was born & raised in Alabama but later moved to Calif. So we took many trips from Ca. to Alabama to visit grandma when I was a child. Dad always wanted to move back to Alabama & he finally got that chance when he was 67, but unfortunately he passed away 1 yr later. Alabama will always have a sweet spot in my heart!

mrsjones6 said...

I love all of the old houses the Birmingham area has to share. These two you have pictured are just so cute. There are some beautiful elements (like the wooden double doors) that are so desirable in both.
Hope you have enjoyed the cooler temps this week,
Jen

ROXY said...

wow, I love the door with the huge glass transom. It has so much character. Love your blog:)

Tracy said...

Ohhhhhhhh I love the Sonnet house, sometime when we're around B'ham we'll have check these places out.

Tracy

A Hint of Home said...

What beautiful old homes! I could see myself living there. I'm glad they are kept and being used for people's enjoyment.
Your Fall decorations are sooo cute and you got some nice things from Grandma's house.
Can't wait to see what you do with them.

Liz said...

Why oh WHY dont they build houses like that anymore?

Ms. Tee said...

Oh, what beautiful photos. I love farmhouses and also big porches with rocking chairs. Thank you for the tour! :)

MIMILEE said...

THANKS for the tour! You are just right down the road from me.....I will definately have take a 'road trip' soon!

Very Interesting post!

MIMILEE<><

Maya said...

The wooden front door of this home is amazing -I just redid the front door of my old dutch colonial home, had to paint it though.

Beverly said...

My husband and I went out for a drive in a small nearby town this morning. It was a lovely drive with beautiful countryside.

I enjoyed your drive.

Inspired Kara said...

The first house, I'm pretty sure, is where I dream about living.

The second house...oh the second house. WHY, why do they not have great places like this for a wedding in the mid-west. I want so badly to get married on the grounds of an old estate, or in a barn!

Thanks for a break away to day dream :)

carolyn at cranberry crossings: said...

Love this! Can't wait to see more!

Amanda said...

Thanks for the info on the paint color. Its so funny b/c I have a Sherwin Williams paint swatch book-and the one color I kept going to was the exact color you used! Also LOVE all the yard sale finds- cant wait to see the blk and wht room. TJ Maxx had these beautiful damask lamp shades that would go perfect with those lamps- they were $13 a piece -I think. I too am sooo in love with all things black and white. I am thinking of spray painting a huge garden urn I have all in black (to make it look like those old cast iron planters that cost a fortune)then planting orange mums in it for fall.

The Quintessential Magpie (Sheila) said...

Rhoda,

Thanks for the Alabama house tour! Loved seeing those two well preserved homes.

You asked about the bell in the yard of House #1. Not sure about that bell in particular, but here's what I know about them...

Years ago, those bells were used on plantations and farms to signal the farm hands. The ringing could be heard in the fields. In cities, they had steam whistles on some factories that would tell you when to come to work, when it was noon, when the lunch hour was over, and when it was quitting time. The farm bell was the country equivalent of a factory whistle.

In terms of these bells, in addition to using them for every day signals, they could also be used in case of emergencyl like when a barn or house was on fire. Throughout the South during the War Between the States, both church and plantation/farm bells were sometimes melted for bullets.

Hope this helps!

XO,

Sheila :-)

the undomesticated wife said...

I love those old farmhouses! Love the porches, the windows around the doors, everything!

nel said...

I would love to sit in those old rockers and try to imagine who else has sat there and what their life must have been like... lovely old farmhouse and so lovingly restored.

The second home is so, so gorgeous. It must be absolutely beautiful inside. Must go and check out the website.

Thanks for the tour!
Nel

Pat@ Back Porch Musings said...

I love the window with blue gingham curtains. The old farmhouse is beautiful.

Claire, said...

So charming!
That's not very witty of me, hu?

Laura @ the shorehouse. said...

I love, love the style of the Bass house. It's my total favorite, and doesn't really exist around me, which makes me love the style more (I always want what I can't have :-)

Great photos...and I can't wait for Grandma Eleanor stories!

Nancy Hood said...

what a neat way to brighten my day! loved the pics and info ~ do share some more!!

Diane@A Picture is Worth.... said...

Hi Rhoda,
Love the outside tour of the homes. My favorite pic is the birdbath in the garden.
Thanks for sharing.
Diane

sarah @ a beach cottage said...

oh I love to come house travelling allover the States in blogland lol!

particularly enjoyed this tour, love the deck with the chairs and most of all the blue check curtains, right up my street...

I would love to come visit, we are planning a trip to the states at the end of next year and I'm hoping to get down south...

Sarah

Cottage Rose said...

OMG; what lovely photos, I just love old homes that have be restored. Such history in them. I thank you for the sight seeing tour, loved it.
have a great friday.

Hugs;
Alaura

Hooked on Houses said...

What a fun post! I love seeing places like this and learning a little about them. Thanks, Rhoda! -Julia :-)

Reese and Marie said...

Hi Rhoda! What fun for me to armchair travel to Alabama and what amazing character and style in those old homes!

Thank you for coming to visit my blog and I hope to hear from you again sometime!

-Kari
~Reese & Marie~

Stacey said...

Love those front doors and the old red brick chimney. Neato!

Kat said...

Rhoda..I bet you were itching to get inside that house. I would have loved to see that ceiling.

Leigh said...

Next time you go to Leeds check out "The Straw Hat" do a search for it on my web site, search Leeds-great shop. Cute things. Sale is good. And the ladies that work there wonderful.

Buzzings of a Queen Bee! said...

Such beautiful houses. I love them both. They don't have too many of those out here in Colorado...at least not that old and charming!
Carrie

Mary said...

Oh how beautiful -- both of them! Thanks for sharing, Rhoda. :)
xoxo,
Mary

Bear said...

Hi Rhoda,

I have a cousin who lives in Leeds. One of these days I am going to get down to visit her and when I do I cannot wait to meet you! I love your blog and look on it daily.

God Bless, Genah

Ms. Tee said...

I have something for you over on my blog. :) Have a great weekend!

Amanda said...

hope you dont mind- but I just tagged your beautiful white pumpkins in my post. I loved the idea of painting them!!!!

Sandy said...

Way cool pictures. Love the drive by. I have those same pears (in your banner photo).
Just saying hi Rhoda! Happy Weekend!

Imperfect said...

Wow, these are beautiful houses! It has always been my dream to own one like them, though I doubt it will ever happen. Thanks for sharing!

The Decorated House said...

Fabulous old homes. You can feel the history just looking at them.
Have a great weekend!
Donna

Kristi said...

Both those houses are breath taking! One day... oh... one day I hope to have something even a little that special!

Miss Sandy said...

I did enjoy the little side trip with you. That white window frame with blue gingham curtains looked so inviting. I could well imagine a sweet plump grandmother with silver hair twirled up in a bun baking away behind that kitchen curtain!

Joy said...

Beautiful tour. I loved it!

Thanks for your kind comments on my blog. You're so sweet!!!

Karen said...

Sweet Home Alabama ...

I like the old birdbath, no telling how long it has been there. And the front porch with the rockers, just imagine how many life problems were solved while rocking. Thanks for sharing our State with others.

Blessings, Karen
Montgomery, AL

Catherine said...

Hi Rhoda. I was just shot a wedding at the Sonnet House. Their primary business is weddings. The furnishings are sparse, as they need room for caterers to set up and guests to move about. The grounds are immaculatly maintained. They lived upstairs in the attic while rennovating and one of the owners now keeps a green house there, which looks out onto the balcony at the back of the house. One cool feature: there is a RED bathtub in the downstairs bath. We did a few shots of the bride and groom in the tub (dressed in wedding attire, of course:)I'll post some of the pics on my website this afternoon. The upstairs bedroom, the bride's room, is very nice. Decor reminds me of Pottery Barn.The house was built in 1923, I think.

"Maggie" said...

Wonderful photos of Alabama. Is there anything better than a long expanse of porch with two rocking chairs? No! I live for a porch that big.