Longwood was the reason for Madeline and I traveling to Natchez. In the book Tennyson, the "plight" of the family was based on the plight of the Haller family as they struggled with the house through many generations.
In 1859 Haller Nutt retained Philiadelphia architect Samuel Sloan to begin a building on his property that was fashioned after his proposal for a "Oriental Villa" in his book Homestead Architecture. The construction began and within 18 months the base shell and majority of the exterior was complete and the Civil War had started. It seemed that the bulk of the craftsman on site at that time were northerns, heard that war had been declared and walked off the property leaving hammer and nails as they stand today. The family finished the nine room basement and lived there until 1968. Its a sad story of reversal of fortunes and writer Hugh Howard states, "Longwood is a architectural metaphor for cultural excess." Well yes, but it is an unbridled flight of imagination, which is very important as well.