Ron & Elena's 2007-2010 Travels travel blog

 

Capitol building viewed from the Huey P. Long memorial.

Huey P. Long Memorial

Main entrance area with 50' ceiling.

House Chambers

The beautiful ceiling is made from pressed sugar cane stalks.

Way up there you can barely see a pencil stuck in the...

Senate Chambers

Mississippi River from the 27th floor outdoor observation deck. Can you see...

 

The next several photos are views of Baton Rouge from the observation...

 

 

That's the Huey P. Long statue in the center of the photo.

Downtown area where we went for a walk and lunch.

 

 

 

 

 

The long alley of Live Oak trees draped in Spanish Moss leading...

Closer to the house.

Rosedown Plantation

On the front porch looking back down the oak alley.

Some views of the 27 acres of gardens developed by Martha Turnbull.

Tall camellia trees in the garden.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Another view of the Rosedown Plantation.

Smaller home built by the last surviving granddaughter.

Rosedown had its own doctor. This was his office.

Cookhouse where the slaves prepared the food.

The original fireplace used for cooking along with original utensils.

 

Our tour of the inside of the home. The lady in the...

Main staircase to the second floor.

Dining Room. The home never had indoor plumbing or electric until it...

 

Every room was full of elegant furnishings.

Stairway used by the slaves. Very well worn threads!

The Turnbull's kept very detailed records of everything purchased for the home,...

 

 

 

Large mirrors were used in most rooms to make the interior seem...

 

Daniel added this shower. Just pull on the cord ....

.... and water heated on the roof dropped from this tank.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Small tapestry fit into a fire screen is thought to have been...

The men's den, where gentlemen enjoyed tobacco, brandy, cards, and conversation.

Original whale oil lamps were converted to electric in the 1950's.

One of the many pieces of fine old furniture.

Several views of the grounds taken from the 2nd floor balcony.

 

 

 

 

 

How did this oak try manage to grow out of the big...

One of three lattice "summer houses" in the gardens.

The lattuce work was done by slaves using hand tools. All finely...

 

 

 


(Ron Writing) This morning we drove to the nearby AAA travel office and picked-up a new supply of maps and tour books for the next leg of our travels. For several years we paid our “dues” to AAA without needing many of their services. Since we started full-timing we feel like we've earned our money’s worth and are making up for past years. Their maps and tour books are great resources.

We drove to the downtown area of Baton Rouge and toured the state capitol building and grounds. Louisiana has the tallest state capitol building and it’s rated a gem by AAA. We had a nice tour of the building and we were able to go out on the 27th floor observation deck to get a nice 360° view of the city and the Mississippi River. However, we certainly didn’t think the design of the building ranked nearly as high as most other state capitols we’ve visited. Most have a large dome, and impressive rotunda, and beautiful stairways. None of those were incorporated into the design of Louisiana’s capitol.

We took a walk around downtown Baton Rouge and stopped for lunch at Harrington’s. We both had the shrimp and crab fettuccini which was delicious.

After lunch we headed north on US-61 to St. Francisville, LA. This area has several historic plantations that have been restored and are open to the public or have been converted to B&Bs. We toured what is probably the finest one, Rosedown, which is rated a gem by AAA. It is a state historic site owned and operated by the state of Louisiana. This plantation was developed and operated by Daniel and Martha Turnbull by acquiring land through a series of seven purchases between 1820 and 1850. At its peak it had 3,455 acres planted mostly in cotton and was operated with the help of 450 slaves. The Turnbulls were considered on of the wealthiest families in the country at that time.

The Civil War changed all that – without slaves the operation of such a large plantation was not economical. The Turnbulls and two succeeding generations sold off most of the land and made great sacrifices to keep the plantation home and the beautiful gardens surrounding it. When the last granddaughter died the plantation became the property of nieces and nephews who sold it to a very wealthy Texan, Catherine Underwood, who spent several million dollars restoring the property.

The gardens and the home are beautiful. What really makes the place unique is that 95% of the furnishings are original. The descendents of Daniel and Martha kept all the original furniture and most of it was custom made in Europe. During the restoration some of the furniture was refinished but some of it was still in fine original condition. Wall coverings were reproduced from samples taken off the walls behind furniture where they were not exposed to much light.

The tour guide was very knowledgeable and did a fantastic job as she showed us all the rooms in the house.

After our tour we continued north on US-61 to the Mississippi border and then across the southwest tip of Mississippi to Natchez. We are parked for the night at the Mississippi Welcome Center right on the Mississippi River. It started raining just about the time we arrived.



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