Historic homes are something to be marveled. These grandeur homes usually come with interesting history and spectacular previous owners. In Georgia, there are many historic homes and some have fascinating African American heritage attached to them. Several of these antique homes were owned by some of the wealthiest Black women in the state at the time. Take a look at these truly remarkable women and their astounding residences.
Amanda America Toomer (Dickson)
Amanda America Toomer, born Amanda America Dickson, was from Sparta, Georgia. She was a bi-racial woman and the daughter of one of Georgia’s most prominent farmers. Although she was born an enslaved woman, Dickson amassed a wealthy inheritance from her father and was left with over 17,000 acres of land and property. Escaping the wrath of disgruntled relatives, Dickson moved to Augusta where bought a seven bedroom, Greek Revival home at 448 Telfair Street. After the death of her father, Toomer became a Georgia socialite and was educated at Atlanta University, currently Clark Atlanta University. While living in one of Augusta’s wealthiest neighborhoods, the Toomer home was the venue for her 1892 wedding to Nathan Toomer. The home, which is currently owned by John Hock of Hock Development will undergo restoration, said to be complete by March. The restoration will include a plaque commemorating the life of Amanda America Toomer.
Alberta Williams King
Alberta Williams King was the mother of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and wife of Martin Luther King Sr. She and her family, including her children Martin, Christine and Alfred lived together in a modest Queen Anne style home in Atlanta’s “Sweet Auburn” neighborhood. Considered a one-story partial, the home was originally built for a white family. Her daughter Christine and her husband also lived in the home with her parents for a period of time. Now a historic place, the King home is one of the most recognizable, historic homes in Atlanta. Alberta, the matriarch of the King family was active in the Civil Rights Movement and earned a teaching certificate from Hampton University. She also attended Morris Brown College. Alberta was assassinated on June 30, 1974.
Adrienne Herdon was the wife of successful Atlanta millionaire, Alonzo Herdon. Born into slavery, Alonzo had a rags to riches life story where he eventually became the founder of the Atlanta Life Insurance Company. He had his wife design their home, making her the estate’s official architect. She designed a Classical Revival style mansion that was adjacent to Morris Brown College in Atlanta’s Vine City neighborhood. Adrienne was a drama teacher at Atlanta University. She designed the home with a rooftop terrace, said to be a performance venue for the university. Adrienne was also an actress and activist, active in the Black Suffrage Movement in the Atlanta community. She regularly associated with her colleague W.E.B Dubois. Adrienne unfortunately passed away from Addison’s Disease in 1910 as the home was nearing its completion. The Herdon Home was listed as a historic place in 2000.