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The Whitehall Mansion

Whitehall, thought to have been built circa 1855 by John Marshall, began as a modest two-story brick house in the Italianate style popular during the mid-19th century. It sat on twenty acres of land that had been part of the original Spring Station tract owned by Samuel and Norborne Beall, and Bealls Branch, a tributary of Beargrass Creek, ran through the property. The house consisted of eight rooms, four downstairs and four upstairs; a very narrow and steep staircase was featured in the center hall. A back door in the center hall could be opened to coax a cool breeze during a sweltering Kentucky summer day.

Ownership of the house passed through five different people until it was purchased in 1909 by successful horseman and entrepreneur John Middleton.

Renovations to the home made under the supervision of Mrs. Middleton fashioned the Southern-style Greek Revival mansion we know today as Whitehall House & Gardens. A wing was added to each side of the house and one in the back. Mrs. Middleton also added the iconic portico, columns and circular driveway in the front of the house.

Numerous changes were made to the interior, including the removal of a wall between two rooms on the east side of the house on the first floor, and the addition of columns to provide needed structural support in this newly elongated parlor. Although there was no central heat, Mrs. Middleton chose to remove fireplaces once present in these two rooms to create a more formal interior setting, and as a means of compensation, a grand fireplace was built in place of the back door in the center hall. The original twelve foot ceilings on both the first and second floors were altered, raising the first floor to a much more impressive fourteen feet in height, but lowering the second floor to ten feet. But perhaps the most dramatic change made by Mrs. Middleton was the dedication of an entire room from the original house for a staircase, opening up the center hall with an effect that is both light and airy. Many of these changes were somewhat atypical to Victorian architecture of the period, but historians have reasoned that Whitehall's renovation was to reflect Mrs. Middleton's idea of an antebellum mansion of a by-gone era.

The next significant era of the house began in 1924 with the purchase of Whitehall by Hume Logan, president of the Logan Company, a fence and steel products manufacturer. Hume Logan, Jr., the middle son of Mr. Logan's five children, purchased the home shortly after the death of his father in 1948, and lived in Whitehall as a bachelor until his death in 1992 at age 94. The house, gardens and many of the unique furnishings were bequeathed by Mr. Logan to the Historic Homes Foundation so that the public would always be welcome to enjoy this special home. Whitehall was extensively refurbished in 1994 under the expertise of local design firm Bittners as that year's Junior League of Louisville Historic Showhouse. Today the house is open to the public for tours and is a popular venue for weddings, receptions and other momentous occasions.