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Jump Into the Poole House!

After tea I was able to roam about alone from room to room with my camera, so this week my column is heavy with images instead of words.

Last weekend I had the pleasure to visit to tour the gardens and enjoy tea as part of last week’s events.

After tea I was able to roam about alone from room to room with my camera, so this week my column is heavy with images instead of words. 

Let’s just say I was in heaven!  Le Jardin Blanc has all the ingredients for a nice afternoon as far as I’m concerned–great food, interesting teas, wonderful décor, beautiful gardens, a little shopping, and history!  

The correct historical name for the property is the Poole-Huffine-Bulloch-Rollins home, and at 144 years old it has quite a history. It was built by William Haynes Poole, the very first physician and surgeon in the area before Douglasville or Douglas County existed by name.  My article provides a little background on Dr. Poole, but I’d like to add that he began studying with Dr. M.F. La Dell in Cedartown and earned his degree from Savannah Medical College where he served one year as an intern at the Marine Hospital.

He graduated in 1860 with first honors in his class and his graduating thesis, “Modue Operandi of Medicines” was published in what would amount to the American Medical Journal today for other physicians to review. 

After graduation, Dr. Poole returned to his parents’ home in Carroll County intending to open his medical practice there, but he served the next four years in the Medical Unit of the Confederate Army.  Fannie May Davis’ history of Douglas County relates his skill in surgery was reported to have been equal to the best in the entire unit.  His learning experiences, no doubt, made up for any laxity that might have been overlooked in medical school.

He arrived in after the war was over, and soon Dr. Poole had an extensive and profitable practice. He built the home on Strickland Street for his bride, Marcella Vansant, daughter of Rueben and Flora Vansant.  They had eight children.  I couldn’t help but think as I walked up the stairs how busy the house must have been at one time with eight children moving about even though there are thirteen rooms to spread out in.

Dr. Poole was very well known in town and took part in many aspects of the development of Douglasville. He owned land throughout the county, served on a committee that made recommendations a courthouse be built in 1896 and was a Mason and member of the Lutheran Church.   After the 1896 Courthouse burned in 1956 a box that had been placed behind the cornerstone was opened.   One of the items inside the box was a $500 Confederate note signed by W.H. Poole and two of his sons, Reuben H. and Thomas J. Poole.

The slate roof is original to the home and was hauled to Douglasville by two horse wagons from Rockmart Quarry.   Fannie May Davis advises the home is constructed with wooden pegs holding together its oversized framing members. 

The Huffine family bought the property from Dr. Poole.  Mr. Huffine was in the cotton business and owned the Huffine Warehouse which was located  where the is located today. 

Next came the Bulloch family followed by Keith and Sandra Rollins who were the last owners to actually live in the home. They made many restorative improvements to the home and gardens before passing ownership to Susanne Hudson and Jeri Farmer who own Le Jardin Blanc.

Today the home is used for events from grand weddings, parties, and of course a full tea is served on Thursdays and Fridays at 11:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. and on Saturdays at 11:30 a.m.  Reservations are required and can be made by calling 678-838-4449.   The Website for Le Jardin Blanc can be found here.

Julie Camp June 13, 2011 at 07:43 PM
Through most of my childhood, the house was in disrepair. But, I loved staring at it through the bushes of my grand daddy's house. His house was 2 doors down and you could only see in the winter time. I would climb the beechnut tree and peer over there and picture myself living in the grand old house. We tore down my grandparents house years ago and I miss it. It was build in the 20's and had a lot of character. Houses just aren't what they used to be.
Tommy Stone June 13, 2011 at 10:39 PM
I'm glad to see a fine old house restored and put to good use rather than being torn down and something else trown up as is all too often the case. A very good story on the history of the house as well.
Lisa Cooper June 20, 2011 at 02:46 AM
Julie, that's facinating! Thanks for sharing. There were older houses like that in College Park when I was growing up that I fantasized about. Maybe one day..... Tommy, I agree with you. Sometimes we just want to demolish the past thinking the structures aee old and tired, but we are erasing history. It's much better to recycle the property when we can.
Linda Sewell January 13, 2013 at 04:42 AM
Lisa, Kudos to you for a great article. This is the first article regarding the old house that, as far as I know, has ever made mention of the Huffine part of it's history. E. M. Huffine was my husband Alan's Great Grandfather and he and his brother's & sister used to spend a lot of time at the house when they were young. As a matter of fact, the little house to the left of the property, if you are standing at the street facing the house, is where my husband & his family lived until Gene Sewell (owner of Sewell Shoes on Broad Street) built their 2nd home on Shawnee Trail on Lake Jane. We have several pictures of them in the old house as well as their little home on the property, not sure if it is still a part of the property or not. Thanks for including the Huffine's in our article. Linda Sewell, Douglasville
Tina Miller January 13, 2013 at 10:32 AM
Thanks for the article! My Great Grandfather was E.M Huffine, a.k.a Papa Gene. My family lived in the home for many years and it was handed down to my grandmother. My dad has many many fond memories of this home. Glad to see it has been taken such good care of. In fact, my cousin's wife, Linda wrote the last comment. She shared with us and I made sure to share with my father, who will really enjoy this article.

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