Tuesday, October 4, 2011
Exterior view of Rhodes Hall, "the castle on Peachtree Street."
Rhodes Memorial Hall, commonly known as Rhodes Hall, is a historic house museum located in Atlanta, Georgia, United States. It was built as the home of furniture magnate Amos Giles Rhodes, proprietor of Atlanta-based Rhodes Furniture. The Romanesque Revival house occupies a prominent location on Peachtree Street, the main street of Atlanta, and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Rhodes Hall is a Romanesque Revival 9,000-square-foot house inspired by the Rhineland castles that Rhodes admired on a trip to Europe in the late 1890's. Architect Willis F. Denny II designed the unique home with Stone Mountain granite, incorporating medieval Romanesque, Victorian, and Arts and Crafts designs as well as necessary adaptations for an early 20th-century home. After two years of construction, the house was completed in 1904.
The grandest feature of the interior is a magnificent series of stained and painted glass windows above a Honduran carved mahogany staircase
Known as Le Rêve or "The Dream", Rhodes Hall is one of the finest intact expressions of late Victorian architectural design in Atlanta. The grandest feature of the interior is a magnificent series of stained and painted glass windows that rise above a carved mahogany staircase. The three-panel series depicts the rise and fall of the Confederacy from Fort Sumter to Appomattox, and includes medallion portraits of over a dozen Confederate heroes.
The famed Rhodes Hall windows depict the birth of the Confederacy
The house cost Rhodes $50,000 to build in 1904. Wired for electricity when it was built, Rhodes Hall is a prime example of the fascination that new technology held for Atlantans at the turn of the century. Over 300 light bulbs light the entire house. The house also had electric call buttons in most rooms as well as a security system. Among the materials used to build the home, the mahogany was from the West Indies and the exterior granite was brought over in 500-pound blocks in wagons from Stone Mountain, located about 25 miles east of Atlanta.
Although Rhodes Hall is now surrounded by commercial buildings and heavy traffic, it has survived damage due to careful historic preservation and restoration efforts. After the death of Rhodes and his wife, their children deeded the house to the U.S. state of Georgia, with a restriction that it be used for "historic purposes". It was used to house the Georgia State Archives from 1930 to 1965. After the Archives moved to a more modern building, Rhodes Hall continued to provide archive services as a branch.
In 1983 Rhodes Hall was transferred to the Georgia Trust for Historic Preservation, which undertook a long-term restoration program. The main stair and windows, which had been moved to the new Archives, were brought back and re-installed in 1990.
From 1984 to 1992, the house was a haunted house attraction every year for Halloween, prior to renovation and conversion to museum.
Rhodes Hall is used as both a historic house museum and as the offices of the Georgia Trust for Historic Preservation. There are house tours on Tuesdays (from 11 - 3, the last tour starts at 2) and on Saturdays (from 10 - 2, the last tour starts at 1). Group tours can be given on other days with advance arrangement. The Museum is also available for rentals including weddings, receptions, corporate events, cocktail gatherings, and birthday parties.Special Events Contact
"Rhodes Memorial Hall History"