Continuing south on Main, Heritage Hall is a house museum open for guided tours in conjunction with the Rogers House and Rose Cottage (See #2). Heritage Hall is one of the finest of Madison’s antebellum homes. Research indicates Dr. William Johnston, a wealthy landowner in Morgan and surrounding counties, may have built the house as early as 1811 in a much simpler form than we see today. He sold the property in 1830 to Dr. Elijah Evans Jones, who expanded the house and gave it its Greek Revival style. Dr. Jones, a prominent physician in Madison, began his career as a medical doctor at the young age of 22 with only one year of medical school. The term “practicing medicine” was seemingly literal terminology during this time!
Dr. Jones was chairman of the board of trustees of the Georgia Female College in Madison (Stop #12) and a major shareholder in the Georgia Railroad. He was a member of the wealthy class, owning 3,000 acres of land and 114 enslaved persons. Like many antebellum homes, Heritage Hall was originally part of an in-town farm on four acres.
Prior to 1912, the house stood about 200 feet south of its current location, when it was moved to make room for the new Methodist Church building (see #8). The entire home was lifted, placed on logs, and pulled by teams of horses and mules to its new foundation. In 1923, Steve Turnell opened the house as the Traveler’s Inn, which operated for about ten years. Mrs. W. Manley purchased the house in 1946 and lived there until her death in 1977. Her granddaughter deeded it to the Morgan County Historical Society.