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The largest Octagonal house in America.  the mansion was designed in 1859 and work began in 1860 for wealthy cotton planter Haller Nutt and his wife Julia.  The Philadelphia architect Samuel Sloan and his Philadelphia craftsmen made rapid progress until April 1861.  When the Civil War began, the Philadelphia craftsmen dropped their tools and fled north.  The tools and material remain on site as they were in April 1861.

Haller Nutt and local workers finished the 10,000 square foot basement as living quarters.  He died in 1864 but Julia and their eight children lived on in the basement till her death in 1897.  No pictures are not allowed in the basement living quarters which is a shame.  Many of the families original furnishings are on display and the finished area is remarkable.  This was one of many homes owned by the Nutts.  Winter Quarters was one of their plantations.

The tour was very interesting and really provides a point of reference to the glory and tragedy associated with the war in the south.  The house was never finished, in fact due to tax debt Julia Nutt lost most of the plantation holdings after the war.

On many levels, this is a very worthwhile attraction to visit.  Having owned and worked on some older residential buildings, I found the craftsmanship to be fascinating.  The bricks were fired on site, the wood was harvested locally and milled in Philadelphia then shipped back to Natchez.  Those folks had their stuff together back then.

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Our trip to Natchez included a walking tour.  There are a variety to choose from and the streets are marked so it is easy to follow the route.  The Commercial Bank building was an impressive structure dating back to 1836.  It included living quarters.  It was vacant and for sale so we were not able to see inside.

View the original album click here then click any picture  for a slide show.

Main street is interesting and there is a whole block of buildings that largly resemble what they looked like in the mid 1800’s.  As I say there are a number of walking tours and the city has done a great job of marking the routes.  Each is about a mile to a mile and a half.  Signs and pictures tell the stories.  Due to a later start than we had planned, we only had time for one.

We headed to one of the casinos for a late lunch / early supper and it was soon time to get back to the campground.


There are two towns in Louisiana named Waterproof.  Judging from the above picture, my guess is the first attempt did not meet with success and they tried a second time.

Many of the communities have museums filled with local history.  The above picture of Waterproof came from the Library/Museum at St. Joseph, LA.  Another great stop worth taking the time for.

Today and tomorrow then we roll north.  Hope the snow has ended there by now.  More to come, stay tunned.