Windsor Ruins: The Remains of a Mississippi Mansion
Located just a few miles east of the Mississippi River is a field of 23 columns, the only remains of what was once the most massive antebellum home in Mississippi. What is left standing is known as the Windsor Ruins.
Most likely, you won’t happen upon the Windsor Ruins by accident. The nearest town is Port Gibson. Basically, these columns are in the middle of nowhere, but the drive is pleasant!
It would make the most sense to visit Windsor Ruins while visiting Natchez, Mississippi or driving the Natchez Trace. From Natchez, the site is about an hour north and approximately ten miles off of the Natchez Trace Parkway.
See Related: 30 Things To Do in Natchez, Mississippi
Construction of Windsor was completed in 1861, and the home belonged to planter and plantation owner Smith Daniell, II. Mark Twain is known to have visited the mansion.
So, just what happened to the house? It wasn’t uncommon for homes to be destroyed during the Civil War, but Windsor was spared. Legend says that it was destroyed by a single cigarette.
The story goes that a party guest dropped a cigarette somewhere upstairs, and the home burned from top to bottom.
Seeing the columns in person is a surreal sight. They were so much taller than I had imagined.
We urge you to be cautious and explore at your own risk. Signs state that the columns are unstable.
While beautiful, the site can also feel a bit eerie. I have known people to go ghost-hunting here, but never heard whether or not any evidence was found.
If you’d like to see the wrought iron staircase that was once part of Windsor Mansion, head on over to nearby Alcorn State University. We made a loop around campus and spotted the stairs quite easily.
Enjoy abandoned places? Then also check out the Ghost Town of Rodney while you’re in the area.
See Related: Spooky Mississippi: The Ghost Town of Rodney
What are your thoughts on the Windsor Ruins? Underrated? Overrated? Have you been to visit the columns? Do you know of any other hidden gems in Mississippi? Let us know in the comments below!
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Jennifer is the founder of Just Chasing Rabbits travel blog. She lives in Mississippi with husband/travel companion, Mark, and three fur babies. After obtaining a BA degree in studio art and working in the field of photography for years, Jenni has combined her love of travel and photography to form this blog. Mark and Jenni share their experiences in hopes of inspiring others to have wonderful adventures and see the world.
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