The Johnston-Felton-Hay House is one of the most significant historic structures in Macon, Georgia. It was built in 1855 and designated a National Historic Landmark in 1974. The house is currently owned by the Georgia Trust for Historic Preservation and has undergone extensive renovations. The latest projects have included installing a standing seam copper roof, rebuilding the cupola, and restoring the exterior and basement.
The Johnston-Felton-Hay House is considered the “Palace of the South.” Located near Coleman Hill, the Johnston-Felton-Hayes House is a historic structure with architectural details reminiscent of European buildings. The home was designed by the Johnston family, who toured Europe while building it.
After Johnston’s death in 1896, Mary Ellen Johnston stayed in the house with her mother. She redecorated the house for her family and later married William H. Felton, who brought in electricity and updated the plumbing. The Felton family eventually donated the house to the Georgia Trust, which restored the house to its original beauty. The house now includes a museum and an educational center.
The Johnston-Felton-Hay House is considered one of the most elegant Italianate town houses in the United States. Its elegant styling embodies the Italian villa style and was popularized by the picturesque movement. The seven-level Hay House has been featured in the A&E television show, “America’s Castles.”
The Hay House is haunted. There are reports of lights flickering, voices, and ghosts. Volunteers at the Hay House have claimed to have witnessed the spirit of Mary-Ellen-Felton. Currently, the Georgia Trust runs the house and strictly enforces the ‘no ghosts’ policy.
During its long life, the Hay House was the home to two families. The Hay family inhabited the house from 1926 to 1962 and the Johnston family lived in the house from 1860 to the late 1800s. The Johnston family’s collection includes reproductions of famous works of art. For example, it contains a copy of Bernini’s Apollo and Daphne, which is in the Borghese Gallery in Rome.
Inside the Johnston-Felton-Hay House, the visitor will find a ballroom, an art gallery, a 1,200 square foot music room, and separate parlors for ladies and gentlemen. The rooms are furnished with 18th century furniture and decor.
The historic home is a beautiful example of a Georgian plantation. It is situated on the banks of the Macon River. It is a historic landmark. The home is a must-see for any tourist visiting Macon Georgia. In fact, it has a rich history of local history.