Magnolia Plantation in Charleston is a stark contrast to Oak Alley Plantation in New Orleans.
While Oak Alley is all about the home, Magnolia is all about the gardens!
But more importantly, Magnolia is rich in history.
There is so much to see here. Of course the house and garden, but also a swamp, a zoo and original slave cabins.
The original, much grander house burned down, and a modest hunting cabin was later built.
Eventually, that house was added on to, and this is the original back stair entry to the home.
The 16 foot wide veranda is the best part of the house, in my opinion.
Inside, the floors are leaning here and there.
The furnishings are simple.
In the master bedroom, the quilt is all hand made by one person over the course of 20 years, with 12 stitches per inch.
A true masterpiece.
The bedroom downstairs has beautiful matching furniture which is black with hand painting.
Outside, the gardens are breathtaking.
All the azaleas are blooming and spring is just beginning to unfold here.
This is the oldest garden in America, with some sections being 325 years old!
It is one of the last large scale Romantic Gardens left in this country.
I almost felt like I was in Monet's garden!
Mr. A and I pose for a photo under a magnificent Live Oak, dripping with Spanish Moss.
After the garden tour, we checked out the zoo.
This guy does not look impressed with his visitors.
The deer were so affectionate, as long as we had food!
I spied a red fox in the barrel, napping.
How cute is he?
Not so cute!
I found myself humming "Old MacDonald!"
We even took a swamp tour and saw turtles, egrets and enormous bumble bees, but not alligators.
What I find amazing is that Magnolia has been owned by the same family for over 300 years, over 12 generations. Orson Wells and Eleanor Roosevelt were entertained here!
It is rich in history. The British invaded here during the Revolutionary War, and of course the Civil War also left its mark.
There are five slave cabins still standing, dating back to 1850 that have been occupied until the late 1990's.
The Magnolia Cabin Project seeks to inform with respect the African-American slave experience and their vital role in shaping the South and American history in a 45 minute presentation called From Slavery to Freedom.
For more history and information about this historical gem called Magnolia Plantation and Gardens, watch this video.