Rosale Plantation History
by Elizabeth Dart

Rosalie Plantation At Rosale, it is sadly true that as far as its builder were concerned, fools build houses for wise men to inhabit. Ann was the youngest child of the grand old settler Alexander Stirling and acquired his old home site in 1835. with her second husband Andrew Skillman, she began a splendid brick house that proved beyond their means.

First built was a frame building to house the carpenters - the same ones who built Wakefield for her brother Lewis. When financially embarrassed in 1844, Andrew Skillman kept a school in the building, but could not stave off bankruptcy. In 1845, the house the unfortunate Skillmans called China Grove was sold to Eliza Pirrie's first-born, Robert Hilliard Barrow, and his wife Mary, the daughter of David Barrow of Afton Villa.

The house was renamed Rosale, and survived the War only to burn in 1885. Mary Barrow kept as a souvenir an unexploded Union shell, and when the house burned it detonated, bringing down one whole side of the house. The widowed Mary spent the last twenty years of her life a paying guest of distant cousins in New Orleans. The schoolhouse became the ancestral home of that branch of the Barrow family.

Rosale Plantation is a private residence, not opened to tours.


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