I am Tom Freeland, a lawyer in Oxford, Mississippi. The picture in the header is my law office. I'm on Twitter as NMissC

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A beautiful dogtrot house, fading slowly away.

There’s a dogtrot house in Union County just East of the Enterprise community (where the West Union School is on Highway 30, for those who have driven from New Albany to Oxford) that I’ve admired for decades.  In the past, it could be hard to spot because of some woods near it, but there’s been some clearing and I got a good look at it driving through today.

Its appeal for me is largely the degree to which it was a classic and did not seem to have been altered much over the years.

I don’t think it’s going to last much longer, sad to say.

Here’s the front, facing the highway.

Here’s a look down the dogtrot.

The roof and attic on the West side is gone.

Around the back, you can see the way the dog trot breezeway becomes another porth on the back wing of the house.

Here’s a look in the frontmost side window from that side.  You can see some brown in the shadows on that back wall….

It’s beaded board that has never been painted and stained on an interior wall.

Here’s another look at the porch on the rear wing.

One unusual part (at least to me) is a wing coming off that rear wing.  You can see that here, and that there are porches wrapping around the East side of the house.

This one is not long for the world.  I always watch for it, going back and forth to New Albany; it will be really sad when and if I drive through and it’s not there.

11 comments to A beautiful dogtrot house, fading slowly away.

  • volitala

    I always look at these abandoned and crumbling buildings and think about the dreams that went into building them and the lives that were lived inside of them. Even when it’s just an abandoned booth in a parking lot that once housed something “mundane” like a key making business. Somebody hoped it would make their fortune, had a first job there…or their last. Happiness and darkness – I imagine the memories of these experiences whisper around them and that those sensitive to such things can feel them like breezes.

  • Ben

    I have long admired that house. I first saw it more than 40 years ago. It has survived a lotta living and several tornados, the most recent of which took out numerous other houses in the vicinity. It must mean a lot to someone over in Union County. Thanks for the pix.

  • Steve King

    We have more in common than just sharing the same birthday. I too love this old house very much. I always look for it when traveling back and forth. When the tornado went through there I was afraid it had been destroyed. A whole lot of the community and houses, and a church and the old cotton mill were destroyed but thank God this old house made it through the storm. Thanks for the pictures. I have thought about stopping and taking pictures of it many times but never have. Steve

  • Chico Harris

    I also have long admired that house.

  • Alan

    I do hope you had permission to come so close to the house to take those pictures. I’m from Union County, and I would hate to see our NMC become a footnote in one of those torts cases about the crazy old hillbilly who rigged up beartraps and shotguns tied to pieces of string all over his semi-abandoned property.:)

  • Vicki Childers

    I glad you didn’t fall in the well. A lot of these old houseplaces have wells where the covers have rotted away and can’t be seen until you are on top of them.

  • NMC

    I’m pretty careful where I step walking around old house sites.

    I will say I probably looked somewhat odd mucking around in the extremely wet ground (rain the night before) in a dark suit on the way back from court.

  • Observer

    My daddy was born in a house almost exactly like that one in 1925 in eastern Union County.

  • Mississippi mudws

    Last Saturday I was at the Desoto County Museum in Hernando. The campus consists of an old church (rented out on Sundays to an active congregation, a new museum, and a very solid, unpainted, well constructed log dogtrot. Excellent joints at the corners and totally unimproved. Just “two pens and a passage.”

  • Observer

    Seeing Mississippi mudws response reminds me:

    If you have never taken the time to stop at French Camp and see the historical buildings and things that they have assembled there, you should make a point to do that:


  • [...] places in Mississippi: “Decaying History”  on the Modern Southerner blog, and “A beautiful dogtrot house, fading slowly away” on NMissCommentor. Rate this: Share [...]

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