The Bridges House, or affectionately known as the Pink House by the residents of Homewood, Alabama in Jefferson County, has been the center of local controversy for at least a year. The Bridges designed and built the house and the gardens over the course of the middle twentieth century. The house was meant to be an artists’ retreat for the two of them. Despite this fact, the couple was known for entertaining over the years and the home developed a cosmopolitan reputation despite the modest suburban nature of Homewood. The house is listed as a contributing building to a National Register district. However, given the significance of the property to the community and the design significance of the house and the gardens, it could be individually eligible for the National Register.
The Hotel Talisi, Tallassee, is under an immediate threat. After a devastating fire and failed rehabs, the community and state landmark has been condemned as a public nuisance and slated for demolition. A late appeal filed by the owner has delayed the demo through May 14, 2019. There needs to be a considerable effort made stabilize the buildings and renovate it, so Tallassee doesn’t lose this important place.
This property is a contributing structure in the National Register of Historic Places Seth Lore and Irwinton Historic District. It is also one of eight historic Eufaula structures recorded during the Historic American Building Survey in 1935. In addition, it is one of the oldest surviving Greek Revival residences in Eufaula, built circa 1840.
In 2017, the house’s roof and several windows were severely damaged in a windstorm. That damage was exacerbated by Hurricane Michael in 2018. There is severe water intrusion and the damage continues with each passing day. The owners have applied for an emergency loan from the Alabama Trust’s Endangered Property Trust Fund, but this loan cannot cover the costs. The Eufaula Heritage Association is supporting the effort to restore this building. Places in Peril is listing this property to provide statewide awareness to the ongoing issue.
The Rural Training and Research Center, Epes, has a complicated past steeped in the quite Civil Rights movement of West Alabama. Overshadowed by the events in Montgomery, Selma, and Birmingham a legal battle played out between African American tenant farmers and white landowners, resulting in the tenants being evicted. The community came together and formed the Panola Land Buying Association. The goal was to build a place that was theirs. As part of that movement, the Federation of Rural Coops supported the farmers along the way. In 1970 the PLBA formally purchased around 1,100 acres in Epes, Sumter County, Alabama and the Federation of Rural Coops opened the Rural Training and Research Center, supporting and educating farmers across the South.
The first burial in Oaklawn Cemetery dates from the 1870s. This cemetery is a significant place for the African American community of Mobile. Located in North Mobile, the burial ground is the final resting place for many. While the number of burials unknown, it is estimated that as many as 10,000 people are buried there. The cemetery contains burials of veterans from all branches of the military including, the Merchant Marines, from WWI, WWII, Korea, Vietnam, and Gulf Wars. Also buried there are Purple Heart, Bronze Star, and Silver Star Recipients, as well as Buffalo Soldiers, Tuskegee Airmen, and others. There are also significant individuals that served their community in other ways.
Alabama's Endangered Historic Landmarks
Each year since 1994, Alabama Heritage has highlighted threatened historic sites throughout Alabama. The “Places in Peril” list has identified more than 215 imperiled historic resources throughout the state, and is compiled by the Alabama Historical Commission and the Alabama Trust for Historic Preservation. The locations highlight the results of deferred maintenance, perceived obsolescence, development pressures, and lack of funding—forces that now more than ever threaten our cultural legacy. But awareness is a powerful force, too, and can cultivate a renewed determination to be responsible stewards of our heritage. For more information, visit the AHC or the ATHP websites. Alabama Heritage is proud to bring to you a selection of the places designated as perilous. Please keep your comments to information relevant to the featured place in peril. Alabama Heritage reserves the right to delete any comment that we deem inappropriate.