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Publisher's Summary

The great majority of the South's plantation homes have been destroyed over time, and many have long been forgotten. In Lost Plantations of the South, Marc R. Matrana weaves together diaries and letters and other rare documents to tell the story of 60 of these vanquished estates and the people who once called them home.
From plantations that were destroyed by natural disaster, such as Alabama’s Forks of Cypress, to those that were intentionally demolished, such as Seven Oaks in Louisiana and Mount Brilliant in Kentucky, Matrana resurrects these lost mansions. Including plantations throughout the South as well as border states, Matrana carefully tracks the histories of each from the earliest days of construction to the often contentious struggles to preserve these irreplaceable historic treasures. 
Lost Plantations of the South explores the root causes of demise and provides understanding and insight on how lessons learned in these sad losses can help prevent future preservation crises. Capturing the voices of masters and mistresses alongside those of slaves, this book explores the powerful and complex histories of these cardinal homes across the South.
The book is published by University Press of Mississippi.
©2009 University Press of Mississippi (P)2017 Redwood Audiobooks
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Polly Poizendem on 12-31-17

Lost Plantations ... AND their long lost stories!

Wow. This was a LOT more than I expected! Not just filled with architectural descriptions as the title might imply - but includes MANY awesome stories and facts about life on the individual plantations - most of which I guarantee you have not read elsewhere, ...unless you have a whopping huge library.

It really made it quite interesting with all these behind the scenes goings on! Hardships, frivolity, sadness, ingenuity and determination, and certainly not the way Hollywood portrays it! I learned LOTS of things that I never knew concerning how things were done back in the day.

Of course for the purist history buffs, there are also oodles of the who, what, wheres, names, dates, and places as well. And believe it or not, that was even fascinating too, hearing about how certain properties were acquired - stolen - or lost!

I thought the narrator did a great job. It was like you were getting a personally guided tour from one of the long time local historians. Pleasant mature voice. I can almost see him standing there wearing a white linen suit as he points to one of the buildings on the sprawling plantation. Lol.

Although I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request in exchange for my voluntary review, I can honestly say that I enjoyed this one.

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5 of 5 people found this review helpful

4 out of 5 stars
By mike s. on 03-09-18

Interesting ride through history and architecture

I didn’t know how this book would work as audio. Seems like it could only be a coffee table book with lots of pictures. I’d never listened to a book about architecture. What kept me going was all the history woven throughout. Being a difficult subject, necessarily including the horrors of slavery, the author does a great job at balancing all these sensitive issues. Trying to stick to the architectural and heritage issues, he also sprinkles in great anecdotes, family histories, and the true brutality of human beings’ inhumanity to each other. Many of the plantations have been lost, many to fire. The only thing that struck me as odd is that the author is constantly surprised that any arsonist would dare burn down some of these structures. He never addresses that the plantation houses were (and are) seen by some as representations of institutionalized racism and a mocking reminded of the evils of slavery. Other than that, it was a very detailed and fascinating ride through history. Note to the narrator: Great job recording this book, but the sound quality sounded a bit “tinny.” I’m no technician, but it sounds like a quality issue with the studio space or equipment. Glad I listened to this book. I was given a free review copy of this audiobook and have voluntarily left this honest review.

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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