Discover Middle Georgia: Andalusia
MILLEDGEVILLE, Georgia. (41NBC/WMGT) – While many people are familiar with her written works, plenty are unaware of Flannery O’Connor’s ties to Middle Georgia.
Andalusia is most well known as the home of Flannery O’Connor, but the land was first settled in 1814 as a cotton plantation and farm.
Flannery’s uncle, Dr. Bernard Cline purchased the farm in 1931 and her mother, Regina helped with the farming operations.
Matthew S. Davis, Director of Historic Museums at Georgia College, says the property this day still hints at the farming history. “You will see remnants of some of that operation – from barbed wire fencing, to a dairy barn, to a milk processing shed, to even a dairy pond that’s on the property,” he adds.
Flannery O’Connor was a Georgia novelist, born in Savannah on March 25, 1925.
Shortly after beginning her career in 1949, O’Connor fell ill and was diagnosed with lupus in the early 1950’s.
Following her diagnosis, O’Connor moved back to Andalusia where she lived with her mother for the rest of her life.
Flannery O’Connor only lived for 39 years, but she wrote the majority of her most famous works at Andalusia in Milledgeville.
During her 13 years at Andalusia, O’Connor wrote 39 short stories, two novels and over 100 literary critiques.
Her work is sardonic, southern Gothic style, and the surroundings of Andalusia often influenced the settings of her creative pieces.
Flannery O’Connor is one of the most famous alumni of what is now Georgia College and State University. After keeping up with the home following her death, members of the O’Connor family gifted Andalusia to Georgia College.
“Today, Georgia college operates this as a historic house and site, and our longer term goal is to restore this exactly – house buildings and property – to the period in which O’Connor lived here,” Davis says.
Almost all the collections in the home are original – including the drapes in the bedroom and dining room made by Regina, medicine bottles O’Connor used for treatment of Lupus, and the retro refrigerator (which you have to ask about when you visit).
Recently re-opened following restorations of the 200 year-old farmhouse and its outbuildings, Andalusia is now open for visitors to tour.
Andalusia also pays tribute to Flannery O’Connor’s love of peafowl with two peacocks named Shortley and Astor, characters from her short story “The Displaced Person.”
Discover Middle Georgia and take a step back in time to experience the life of local novelist, Flannery O’Connor at her historic home, Andalusia.