The white plantation house is where O’Connor wrote some of her last and best-known fiction
Mary Flannery O’Connor (March 25, 1925 – August 3, 1964) was an American novelist and short story writer.
She was a famed Southern writer who often wrote in a sardonic Southern Gothic style and relied heavily on the regional settings with which she was familiar.
O’Connor had desired to move away from the South, but when she was diagnosed with lupus, she moved to her mother’s dairy farm in 1951 and lived there until her death in 1964 at the early age of 39.
Established in 1814, Andalusia was originally a cotton plantation until it was purchased by Flannery’s uncle Dr. Bernard Cline in 1931.
During O’Connor’s time there, the site contained 14 buildings with over 520 acres of land that was used both for dairy and beef farming.
Following O’Connor’s death in 1964, the farm remained in her family until 2003 when it was given to a private foundation to be used as a museum. In August 2017, the site was gifted to O’Connor’s alma mater, Georgia College.
Today, Andalusia serves as a museum exhibiting items that illustrate the history of the site during the time which Flannery O’Connor lived on the property. Andalusia is now open for public tours and was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1980.
Flannery had an unusual hobby of raising and collecting exotic birds. There are many photos of her around the Andalusia property with her beloved birds in tow.
Peacocks were her favorite and she often incorporated images of peacocks into her books.
There she is on that gorgeous screen-in front porch – the epitome of Southern life.
Let’s have a look inside the main house…
The house has been undergoing preservation/restoration work and a number of first floor rooms have already been completed.
All of the furnishings are original to Flannery’s era at the farm.
The writer’s daily routine was to attend Mass, write in the morning, then spend the rest of the day recuperating and reading.
O’Connor completed more than two dozen short stories and two novels while suffering from lupus.
Above, she was photographed looking uncomfortable beneath a portrait of her and one of her beloved peacocks.
The museum has carefully arranged the furniture in the same way it was displayed when Flannery lived in the house.
Many of Flannery’s personal mementos are on display…
The kitchen has recently been restored to its vintage state.
Look at that stove!
The office room with Flannery’s writings on display:
Since it was difficult for her to climb stairs, the author slept in a downstairs living room, where she wrote the majority of her published work. Her manual typewriter and her ever-present crutches are on display
Most of the rooms in the house are still undergoing restoration.
Many of Flannery’s short stories were set in scenery inspired by the farm.
Below are some photos of Andalusia after a powdering of some rare Georgia snow:
You can see how such an enchanted place captured the imagination of the attuned author.
Although Flannery died an untimely death due to disease, her beloved Andalusia farm lives on.