Eufaula, Ala., homeowners will open the doors of their privately owned historic houses April 1-3 for the 46th annual Eufaula Pilgrimage. The three-day event features home and garden tours during the day, ghost and candlelight tours at night, an antique car show, a sidewalk art show and an antique show and sale. High tea is served Friday and Saturday and Sunday features a brunch at Shorter Mansion. Three homeowners who will be part of the Pilgrimage gave us a peek inside their houses.
The Russell-Kellogg House
This 6,000-square-foot house was started in 1900 and finished three years later. It’s the first house in Eufaula to have indoor plumbing, and some of the shower fixtures are original to the house.
Three years ago, Dee and Don Kellogg left Denver to return to Dee’s home state of Alabama.
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The first floor of the house has been lovingly restored, while work is ongoing on the second floor bedrooms and bathrooms and the third floor ballroom.
The 1,700-square-foot wraparound porch features a lot of greenery and furniture and is a welcoming place to sit and enjoy the sunset.
Bill and Connie Neville’s home was built in 1872 by James Turner Kendall and remained the Kendall family until it was sold in 1990 as a bed and breakfast.
Connie Neville said a room in the center of the house was sunken, so they raised the floor. They also redid the bathrooms and rebuilt the wrap-around porch.
“That was quite extensive,” she said. “The crew had to lift and support every column.”
Most rooms got a new coat of paint.
The McEachern-Speake House
Frankie and Charles Speake bought the house in 1992. They had to gut the house and put on a new roof, but they kept as many of the original floors, fireplaces and glass pieces as they could. The front door is also original to the house, which was built in 1877.
It was originally a six-room house, Frankie said. The house had been added on, and she and her husband added an additional room in the back for their master suite.
A history teacher at the Lakeside School, Frankie has filled her house with framed vintage photographs, knick-knacks from Southeast Asia that her brother, who works for the World Bank has brought her and work by local and regional artists.
There’s a family connection to the house — her great-grandmother was a first cousin of the first owners of the house.
Even though it’s been a lot of work, Frankie Speake said “it’s been fun.”