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History frozen in time: Milledgeville's Andalusia named National Historic Landmark

"It is a great way for we as Americans to appreciate our history.”

MILLEDGEVILLE, Ga. — Up the stone steps and through the white front door is Andalusia, the Milledgeville home of famed author Flannery O'Connor. It’s now America's newest National Historic Landmark.

Matthew Davis, Georgia College’s Director of Historic Sites, knows that the house has a tale as old as time. 

“Andalusia itself is a historic farm property that dates back to the early '18-teens' -- 1814, actually,” he says.

The site contains 14 buildings and over 520 acres of land on it that are all being preserved to this day.  

O’Connor was a Milledgeville native and a graduate of what is now Georgia College. In 1950, she came to live with her mother at the farmhouse due to being diagnosed with lupus, and is where she would stay until her passing in 1964. She wrote the bulk of her work at Andalusia, which includes two novels, 32 short stories, and over 100 literary critiques.

Davis says, “O'Connor is arguably one of the most important writers of the mid-20th century in the United States. Her style of Southern gothic writing has made her a very enduring figure in the literary world.”

The Georgia College Historical Site Department, who now owns the property, claims that 90% of the things found in the house are the original items that O’Connor left behind, down to the wallpaper. Due to the limited changes to the farmhouse, the National Park Service has recognized Andalusia as the campus’s second National Historic Landmark. The other one is Georgia’s Old Governor’s Mansion.  

It is a great way for we as Americans to appreciate our history,” says Davis. “We are very proud to be the stewards of these properties.”

Not only has O’Connor left behind her possessions, she’s also left behind a legacy that influences students at Georgia College to this day. One of those people is student docent Deanna Sorrells who works at Andalusia. She likes O’Connor’s "can-do" attitude. 

“She really didn't care what people thought, she just did her,” she said, “She just really kept trucking ahead and I think that can speak to anybody.” 

Georgia College will receive an official park service plaque commemorating the designation and they’ll hold a ribbon cutting ceremony in early May.  

To see this historic farmhouse frozen in time, tours are available. They are between Tuesday-Saturday from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. and Sunday from 2 p.m.-4 p.m., with all tours on the hour and the last tour beginning at 4 p.m.. The property will close each day to public visitors at 5 p.m. and they are closed on Mondays.

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