Gravel Hill Plantation
Gravel Hill is important not only as an example of Greek Revival architecture, but also as one of the few
remaining plantations of the Buddenville area. IN the first half of the nineteenth century, Buddenville
was a “region inhabited by large planters and land owners where wealth, affluence, culture, and high
standards of living were reflected in palatial homes and surroundings. Gravel Hill is one of the few
structures in the Buddenville area that was not destroyed during the Civil War. Gravel Hill is a two-story
white frame Greek Revival structure set upon a raised basement. Benjamin Lawton Willingham
constructed this one-time plantation between 1857 and 1859. A gable roof and a one-story portico,
which is supported by four wooden square columns, characterize the front façade. Wooden balustrades
both enclose and top the portico. A ballustraded portico and side piazza was added ca 1900. And the
foundation was enclosed with cement ca 1955. Two small wings have also been added to the building.
Benjamin Willingham gave Gravel Hill Plantation to his daughter, Phobe Willingham Malone ca 1864.
Brigadier General Judson Kilpatrick, a member of General Sherman’s staff spared the house because it
had been used as a hospital for Union troops as they passed through the area. In 1888, the house was
sold to Charles Edward Bryan and remained in the Bryan family until 1993. It was remodeld by Suzanne
Bryan Cordray in 1996. Current owner is Frank E. Guidobono. It was listed in the National Register May
28, 1976.