Oakleigh Historic Mansion

January 24, 2013


Oakleigh Historic Home in Mobile Alabama. photo by: Leslie Anne Tarabella
Oakleigh Historic Mansion is a beautiful home built in Mobile, Alabama in the early 1800’s by a wealthy Virginia cotton planter.  It is open to the public, and after years of living in this area, I just recently went to tour this amazing piece of American history.
Oakleigh Historic Mansion, Mobile, AL - Leslie Anne Tarabella
An old Postcard showing Oakleigh when the Azaleas were in bloom.
Out of town visitors finally gave me the nudge I needed to visit something that was practically in my own backyard.  Isn’t that the way it usually goes?
The home was given the name Oakleigh with “Oak” for the huge Live Oak trees on the property and “Lea” meaning “meadow.”  While the actual structure has an interesting design, the furnishings were my favorite part. The interior fashions are considered one of the finest collection of period pieces in America.
Oakleigh Historic Mansion, Mobile AL, Leslie Anne Tarabella
This curved staircase is located outdoors on the front of the house.  The entire living quarters were raised up to the second floor for better air circulation.  You can see this same idea still used in many of the homes in our area today.
During the “War of Northern Aggression,” the lady of the house ran out and draped a British flag over the railing so the Yankees wouldn’t plunder and burn her dear Oakleigh.  She really was of British decent, but little did the soldiers know, her two sons were away, fighting for the Confederacy.
You go girl.
Oakleigh Historic Mansion
The doorknobs at Oakleigh are sterling silver.  They weren’t made of sterling to be showy, but rather the precious metal served as a sterilization device that stopped the spread of disease which was common throughout the southern region of the 1800’s.
To see photos of the fabulous interior, click here to go to the blog, “Trials and Tribulations of a Southern Gardener.”
And if you are ever in the Mobile area, take time to visit Oakleigh.
For more information on Oakleigh, click here to visit the Historic Mobile Preservation Society’s site.
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