Windsor Ruins

Windsor RuinsIt’s been said that nothing is more fickle than fate. As proof,
travelers need look no farther than the 23 columns standing in mute
testimonial just southwest of Port Gibson, Mississippi. The stone
edifices and ironwork are all that’s left of a wondrous antebellum
mansion built in 1859-61 by Smith Coffee Daniell II.


Built in the Greek Revival style, the four-story,
23-room mansion was hardly finished when the Civil War erupted and much
of the South was consumed by flames. Though Sherman’s march to the sea
is more remembered, General Ulysses S. Grant also put towns to the torch
during his march to Vicksburg. Port Gibson, however, was spared when
Grant supposedly said it was “too beautiful to burn.”

Unfortunately, the house called Windsor wouldn’t survive the
era. On February 17, 1890, a house guest dropped a lit cigarette in some
debris, and the resulting fire destroyed the mansion. Only the 23
columns (out of an original 29) and the ironwork remain from one of the
South’s most magnificent structures.

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