Alabama's oldest houses are rapidly vanishing. Built as homes for our early pioneers, many are located in rural areas and are abandoned and deteriorating. Their remote locations make finding the right homeowner particularly challenging and often preclude adapting them for other uses. So goes the story of the John Ash house, home of Ashville’s founder and one of the oldest surviving buildings in St. Clair County. Although widely recognized as a local landmark, the house now sits vacant with no plan or funds to restore it.
Constructed around 1818, the house began as a two-room log cabin with a sleeping loft. Later, it was expanded and “Victorianized.” Inside, however, one of the original rooms preserves its early appearance, with wide board walls and floors, a low, beamed ceiling, and original windows flanking the fireplace. Local preservationists are encouraging the current owner (a descendent of the Ash family) to preserve this important building so yet another pioneer dwelling will not vanish from the Alabama landscape.
1/2/2020 10:04:49 pm
Where exactly is the house and where is his daughter buried?
6/23/2020 01:15:29 pm
I am a descendant of the Ash family and just recently learned the story of how we came to alabama. I did not know this house existed until I read about it in a post on the facebook page Forgotten Alabama. I am so interested in learning everything I can about my family history now! I would love to get in contact with the current owner to possibly find out more, and maybe even get permission to visit the property.
10/25/2020 07:14:56 pm
The House is located on Hwy 411 as you are coming into ashville from odenville
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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.