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Welcome to the website dedicated to Belle Grove Plantation of Louisiana! This website, and its related discussion group, center around Belle Grove Plantation, formerly of Iberville Parish, Louisiana. Belle Grove was the largest antebellum home ever built in the South.

Built by John Andrews and completed in 1857, Belle Grove’s architect was Henry Howard.

“When completed, its tremendous mass rose on huge brick foundation arches over twelve feet above the surrounding earth, its walls and mantels were plastered and carved by the most expert European craftsmen money could secure, its great flight of brick steps was covered with imported marble, its door knobs and keyhole guards were of silver, its pillars bore Corinthian capitals six feet high but of the utmost refinement.

Its theatrical magnificence would have delighted the Bibiena family-seventeenth century designers of the most elaborate and grandiose stage sets for kings. Yet it was not heavy, or pompous. It managed somehow, to combine vastness with delicacy; titanic proportions with grace and warmth….”

Clarence John Laughlin, Ghosts Along the Mississippi

From a Belle Grove Discussion Group Member:

“I’ve often wonder who was the last person to leave Belle Grove? Which member of the family walked down that long, sculpted hallway, heading for the front door for the last time, key in hand, and locked that door, never to return?

Or was it a faithful servant, who for years had walked that same hallway, polished floor beneath his feet, glittering crystal chandelier above his head, to answer that same front door that he was now about to lock forever? And then did that same faithful servant look into the deserted, silent rooms, as he walked past the parlor, the dining room, and then down the servant’s stairs to what had once been their kingdom below stairs?

And what of the silence in that vast, empty house? Did it prance up and down the hallways, staircases, and out onto the pillared porticoes? Did it twist itself around the soaring Corinthian columns like ivy? Or was it like itself and the house it infested – silent and forlorn?”

Join the Belle Grove Discussion Group on Facebook to add your thoughts.

Would you like to learn more? Try this fascinating story about Belle Grove,
from Harnett Kane’s Plantation Parade
.

About

This website is dedicated to the memory, stories and  architecture of Belle Grove Plantation of Louisiana. The site is run by Jason Stern, keeper of Belle Grove lore on the internet since way back when.  Jason started this website back in 1999 when the ‘net was but a babe and Google was still an unknown. He established the Belle Grove Discussion group on Yahoo in 2002 and that newfangled Facebook. Please join us in discussing the fascinating architecture, stories and tales of the long lost diva that was our favorite antebellum home.

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Plantation Parade: The Ambitions of Two Virginians (excerpt)

Kane, Harnett T. pp. 238-248. William Morrow and Co. NY 1945. […] In the meantime the rival John Andrews had been at work. Looking around the countryside soon after his arrival, he had met on an adjoining plantation the Virginia-born Penelope Lynch Adams, descendant of the family for whom Lynchburg was named. During the early …

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