Sunday, December 29, 2013

Guest Writer On Magnolia Grove

Magnolia Grove 

Guest Writer
:DeAnna Stevens:

Historic buildings are found throughout the United States.  From the White House to the rubble of a house in Georgia, each building is a unique piece of American history.  The majority of the buildings are in varying states of disrepair; however, several of these buildings have been purchased by local historical societies and have been or are in the process of being renovated.  This is what has happened to Magnolia Grove in Greensboro, Alabama.  Purchased by the Alabama Historical Commission, Magnolia Grove has been preserved so that future generations of Americans can enjoy the house. 
Built by Colonel Isaac Croom, the exact age of Magnolia Grove is unknown.  However, a historical survey completed in 1936 states that the house was built in the early 1830’s (Burkhardt, 1936).  The architect of Magnolia Grove is unknown.  Located in Hale County, Alabama, Magnolia Grove sits on fifteen acres filled with magnolia trees.  After Isaac Croom’s wife died in 1878, the house passed to their niece, Sarah Hobson.  It was Sarah’s son who made Magnolia Grove a historical landmark due to his achievements as an adult.  Richmond Pearson Hobson grew up in Magnolia Grove and was a naval hero in the Spanish-American War.  Richmond Hobson retired from the navy and was elected a United States Representative.  In 1933, he was awarded the Medal of Honor for his actions during the Spanish-American War.  During his time in office, Hobson proposed several constitutional amendments to ban alcohol and became known as the “Father of American Prohibition” (Hanson) (Hobson, Richmond Pearson, (1870-1937)).
The design of Magnolia Grove is typical of Greek Revival style.  Six Roman Doric columns frame the front of the house and the two story portico.  There are eight windows on the front.  Each window is a 6 over 6 blind sash window.  There are two sets of double doors found on the front of Magnolia Grove.  One set is the main entrance and one set leads to a second story balcony.  The doors are identical and each set is framed by sidelights and a transom window.  The second story balcony is slightly wider than the doors and there is a decorative wrought iron railing surrounding the balcony.  The front of the house and the columns are stuccoed. 
The sides and back of Magnolia Grove are exposed brick.  There are four single chimneys, two on each side of the house.  Magnolia Grove has a very simple square floorplan.  On the first floor, a central hall splits the house in half.  On the left side, a parlor and a dining room share equal space.  A larger living room and small study occupy the right side.  Each room has its own fireplace.  There are fifteen windows on the first floor, four in each room except for the study, which has three.  The hallway is lit by the sidelights and transom window as well as a chandelier.  There are double doors at the end of the hall leading out to the rear porch.  Magnolia Grove’s rear porch is also two stories and framed by six cast iron columns.  There is a detached kitchen and cook’s house located just off the rear porch.  The rear of the house also boasts four 6 over 6 blind sash windows.  The other nineteen windows are 6 over 6 sash windows. 
The second floor is the same floor plan as the first floor.  The central hall bisects the house into two sections.  The left side contains two bedrooms of identical size.  There is a fireplace and four windows in each bedroom.  The right side contains one large bedroom and smaller fourth bedroom.  There is a fireplace in both of these bedrooms.  The larger bedroom has four windows and the smaller bedroom has three windows.  There is also a window located above the stairs on the second floor.  Other than the crown molding throughout the house and the beautiful curved staircase, the interior of the house is plain in its ornamentation.  Decorative trim frames each doorway.  Magnolia Grove still contains all of the original Hobson family furniture and pictures of the Hobson and Croom families are located throughout the house.


Burkhardt, E. W. (1936, November 11). Magnolia Grove, 1002 Hobson Street, Greensboro, Hale County, AL. Retrieved December 29, 2012, from Library of Congress:
Hanson, P. D. (n.d.). Richmond Pearson Hobson. Retrieved December 29, 2012, from Alcohol Problems & Solutions:
Hobson, Richmond Pearson, (1870-1937). (n.d.). Retrieved December 29, 2012, from

Originally written for Class at APUS: December 30, 2012.

Guest views do not necessarily represent the views of The Sassy Countess of her employees (my dog, kids, brother and mother.)

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