Cook at the Mansion
The Mansion served as the residence of the Governor of Georgia from 1839 to 1864 when the state capitol was moved from Milledgeville to Atlanta. Many elements of the complex social issues of the antebellum period including slavery and gender roles played out shaping the history of the building. Today the home is open for public tours.
While touring the home, guests may sense the smell of fresh baked blueberry muffins in the morning (yet no fresh baking is prepared in the ovens.) Molly was a cook who worked throughout her life baking at the Mansion and was famous for her blueberry muffins. In her afterlife, Molly appears to still be preparing meals for guests at the Mansion today. Her skills don’t stop at breakfast, visitors claim at noon and again at precisely five pm the smells of pork and black-eyed peas can fill the air.
During October of 1994, the recently exhumed remains of a Confederate captain lay in state for two days during a living history at the Mansion. Throughout this somber occasion the comings and goings of visitors were in great number. When the ceremonies were complete and the crowds had left, staff smelt burning potatoes throughout the lower level. The aroma was so strong that the fire department was called in fear that the wires had been too hot and caught fire after the excessive use over the last two days. The fireman found nothing of concern, but agreed it smelled of burnt potatoes. Seemed Molly had been too busy preparing for the large crowds that she forgot about her potatoes and let them burn.
Once while staff were collaborating in the kitchen, they heard the door to their offices open and close. The door is kept locked to keep visitors to the home out of the office space. After the door seemed to close itself, the surprise continued with the sound of footsteps running down the hall. The staff immediately searched the home but never found anyone else in the property.
In 1994 a Georgia College student had helped cater an elegant dinner at the Mansion. When the meal was over she was mopping the ballroom floor when a lovely women startled her so much so that she dropped her mop. The woman, who dressed in a dark day dress without a hoop from the 19th century, stood there for several seconds, smiled at the student and nodded her head as if in approval.
Located at 120 South Clarke Street, Georgia's Old Governor's Mansion is open for public tours Tuesday thru Saturday, 10-4 and Sunday, 2-4 with tours every hour on the hour. Admission rates: $10 for Adults, $7 for pre-booked adult groups, $7 Senior Citizens (60 years and older), $2 Students and Free to children under 6 and all GC faculty, staff, and students!
Stories adapted from local sources and:
Duffy, Barbara. True Ghost Stories of Georgia: Banshees, Bugles and Belles. Rockbridge Publishing Company, 1995.