Weddings and funerals….the two events where families always seem to gather. Here in the South, family weddings are a “must go to” event, especially when it’s held at the “big house”.
The big house that I’m referring to is Dicksonia, a lovely ruin of a historic plantation home located in Lowndesboro, Alabama. Located in Lowndes county, it’s a beautiful southern town between Montgomery and Selma where many 19th century homes still remain.There are no commercial businesses here, not even a grocery store. Lowndesboro was saved from being plundered and burned by the Union forces in 1865 when the local physician told General James Wilson that small pox was ragging in the town. The Union forces decided to leave the area, thus leaving most of the home intact. I do believe he’s considered the local hero.
This particular family wedding was held on the grounds of Dicksonia, the home of my husband’s maternal family. The Dickson family moved into the home in 1901 and the property still remains in the family. It is the home where their four children grew up and where their wedding were also held.
.The home burned twice, once in 1939, and was rebuilt the following year in the same style with the addition of a sleeping porch across the back where grandchildren spent many a summer night. The second fire was in 1964 – The fire truck arrived without water and later was stuck in the pond when trying to fill the truck.
Thankfully, the lovely bones of the house remain, which made an incredible setting for a late afternoon wedding.
The great granddaughter grew up next to the big house and spent many afternoons riding her horse over to sit on the porch and enjoying the peaceful surroundings. It was here that she chose to be married- following “family traditions”.
Dicksonia was recorded in the Historic American Building Society in 1934 and the ruins were featured in 1993 book, Silent in the Land. It has been featured in Vanity Fair, the movie Big Fish. and several music videos and photo shoots.