History runs deep in the veins of Auburn’s antebellum houses.
Some of the antebellum homes in Auburn are Pebble Hill, also called the Scott-Yarbrough House; the Frazer-Brown-Pearson Home, also called Noble Hall and White Oaks.
Maiben Beard, membership secretary for the Alabama Historical Association, said Pebble Hill was built in 1847 as a Greek Revival cottage.
“[It was] built on the ancestral lands of the Creek Indians who occupied it until tribal leaders ceded land to the United States under the Treaty of Cusseta in 1832 and were later removed by force in 1836,” she said.
The removal brought a wave of migration into the area from West Georgia by white settlers like Nathaniel Scott and Mary Scott.
“In 1846, Nathaniel bought 100 acres of land just east of Auburn and constructed Pebble Hill,” Beard said.
She said it is known the Scotts owned slaves for part of Pebble Hill’s past.
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“Enslaved African Americans were among Pebble Hill’s first residents, and the Scott family benefited from the institution of slavery in many ways,” Beard said.
By the year 1860, Scott owned 63 slaves, and with this Nathaniel Scott supported succession.
“Two of Nathaniel and Mary Scott’s sons joined the Confederate Army once the war began,” Beard said.
Nathaniel died in 1863, and Mary later sold the property. Then, in 1912, Cecil and Bertha Mae Yarbrough bought Pebble Hill.
“Dr. Yarbrough had a medical practice in town and a political career that included several terms as Auburn’s mayor and one term in the Alabama state legislature,” Beard said.
In 1985, the family donated the property to Auburn University when the Center for the Arts and Humanities was established.
Today, Pebble Hill is used as a local history resource where people can take tours and attend teacher workshops.
The Historic White Oaks Inn was built in the early 1840s by Alexander Varner.
According to the Historic White Oaks website, Varner was a veteran of the War of 1812 and began construction on the home upon his arrival in Auburn around 1836.
Inspired by the design of his old home near Forsythe, Georgia, Varner built White Oaks with floors made of heart-of-pine plank boards and ceilings using all wood.
After the death of Alexander Varner on July 26, 1866, the Fletcher family moved into the home, followed by the Dudley family in 1977. Restoration began on the home and was finished by the Dudley family upon their move-in.
The house is now owned by Deidra and Mitch White, who purchased the property in 1999 as a second home. The house stands at 170 years old.
“[The Historic White Oaks Inn is] a piece of true Southern history and charm … staying in a home that was built over 100 years ago, with much of the construction being original, is a very unique and special experience to enjoy and admire,” Mitch White said.
The Frazer-Brown-Pearson Home, or Noble Hall, is a Greek revival rock-and-mortar house built in 1852 by Addison Frazer.
The property served as a 2,000-acre cotton plantation. Frazer owned 100 slaves during his life from 1809–1873.
He served on the Board of Trustees of Auburn Masonic Female College and East Alabama Male College. In order to construct the home, Frazer used slave labor to build the eight rooms with 12-foot high ceilings and 18-inch exterior walls.
In the back of the house, the original separate kitchen can be found as well as the carriage smokehouse and overseer’s house. The home was owned by the Frazer family until 1922 but remains standing in Auburn today.
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