What looked like a wedding outside Dadeville’s Mitchell House on Sunday with seats neatly placed in front of the house and a tent space behind the residence was actually ribbon cutting and open house for the community.
Mitchell House owner Vivian Autry bought the place in late May and recently joined the Lake Martin Dadeville Area Chamber of Commerce. Autry hosted the event to celebrate and introduce the house to the community.
“My understanding is this house has never been opened up to anybody to walk in and see, so we have a lot of feedback from the local people saying how awesome it is to be able to come into this house being so old,” Autry said.
The house was built in the 1830s and was one of the first houses in Dadeville, according to Tallapoosee Historical Society president Danny Hayes. Dr. William Mitchell built the house and lived in it with his wife and children.
“Dr. Mitchell was a contractor; he was a massive landowner, a farmer and a doctor,” Hayes said. “He had some wonderful, outstanding, super intelligent pioneers in the electrical industry in his sons.”
Mitchell had a son named Sidney Mitchell, who partnered with Thomas Edison in lighting up Manhattan, New York, and generating plants in the Northwest.
“Sid Mitchell has accumulated $2.26 billion on paper,” Hayes said. “He had assets of over $2.5 billion in Long Island (New York) and his homes and gardens were to be admired by people around the world.”
The Dadeville property originally had 22 slaves, according to Hayes.
“The hundreds of acres back in here that went here were a plantation-type farm,” Hayes said. “History is what it is whether you like it or not … This property has got a lot of history to it.”
Off the Beaton Path owner Andi Beaton Mickaels attended the open house to support other businesses.
“It’s gorgeous,” Mickaels said. “We haven’t walked around on the grounds yet but it’s a great event center especially to have so close. We’re excited they’re here and excited to see Dadeville continue to grow.”
Autry works for Wells Fargo, but running Mitchell House is what she does for fun. The house has already hosted some events this summer, such as weddings and parties, and Autry installed a 1,600-square foot tent and floor outside the house.
The house is on some lists for movies and Autry is working with Sandra Fuller, of Tallapoosa County Tourism, and Michael Carter, from the Dadeville chamber, for getting possible film shoots there.
“It’s good. We had a lot of people showing up (at the open house),” Autry said. “Like I said a lot of people want to see the house because they’ve never seen it. They’ve lived here and they’ve seen it, but they’ve never been here to enjoy it.”
Dadeville resident Lucy Little said she hopes the house brings in new businesses to the city.
“It was exciting because I’ve been in the house before but it’s just gorgeous and looks great now, really good — not that it didn’t before,” Little said. “It’s beautiful — everything about it.”
For more information on Mitchell House, visit www.mitchellhouseevents.com.