Tuesday, December 29, 2015

A Little Elegance In My Life - and a wedding

Everyone needs a bit of elegance every once in a while.  So we got a few friends and headed out to one of the plantations for a really elegant dinner.  Did I say expensive? Oh, but it was good!

I  have shown you some of the Houmas House grounds before, during the day.  It is spectacular in a different way at night. We will have to go back soon and get some day photos again, he has added so much to the gardens.

We had an unbelievable dinner in an incredible setting.  Here are some night time beautiful night scenery.

Houmas House (Ho-mus with a short u) is over 250 years old and sits on 38 acres of what is now  lush beautiful gardens.  Kevin, who lives there full time, bought the property in 2003 and set about restoring it and putting in the gardens.

In the 1700s the Houmas Indians sold the land to Maurice Conway and Alexander Latil who erected the small house, which is now behind the main grand house.

The land was laid with sugar cane and the plantation flourished.  1n 1810, Revolutionary War hero
General Wade Hampton bought it and began building the main house.  In 1825 his daughter Caroline and her husband John Preston completed the house to the grandeur we see today.

Land holdings had increased to 300,000 acres.  In 1857, businessman John Burnside purchased the property and declared immunity under the British Crown to save the plantation from destruction during the Civil War. 

Burnside increased sugar production until Houmas House was the largest sugar producer in the country.  The town nearby is named Burnside; always wondered about that.

Burnside's successor grew sugar production to a record 20 million tons of sugar each year.  In 1927, the great Mississippi Flood devastated the area but the main house remained dry.  After that the plantation slowly fell into disrepair.

In 1940 it was purchased by New Orleanian George Crozat as a summer home.  After his death, his heirs opened the house to the public.

In 1963, Hush Hush Sweet Charlotte with Bette Davis was filmed in the rooms of the Grand House.

You really can't see it but the photo on the right is the Pagoda Garden.  And on the left you can see the turret on the top of the Grand House behind the exotic rose trees. 

We took some time after dinner and walked through spectacular displays of lights without cheesy Christmas junk.  

http://www.portcargo.com/royal%20wedding/RW028.jpgThe last photo is the side of the Grand House with the huge porches that wrap the white house. 

Tell you what, come and visit me and we can go out and see the gardens and tour the house!  If Kevin is home, he can show us the photos of the first wedding held there........his two dogs!


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