Looking to get off the beach and dive into Alabama's history instead of our warm salty waters? Fortunately, as much fun in the sun as this region boasts on the beach, when you drive north there are a handful of historical sights to see as well. History buffs and those who love the beauty of the Old South may enjoy a visit to the Swift-Coles Historic Home in Bon Secour, just a short drive from Fort Morgan beach houses.
Bon Secour was the original coastal community along the Gulf Coast, and it flourished thanks to its main industry: fishing. The Swift-Coles mansion was first built as a four-room house in 1882. By 1900, Charles Swift, owner of the local Swift Lumber Company, moved into the house with his wife Susan to be near one of his mills, which was on the property. The Swifts added a downstairs wing and rooms upstairs, and by 1908 it stood as the 16-room mansion it is today.
The Swift family grew with 11 children all born and raised in the house. The last Swift to live in the house, Susan Neill Swift Marshall, died in 1976, and the house was sold to Nick Coles of Gulf Shores. Coles, having long admired the glorious Old South mansion, restored the home to its original turn-of-the-century splendor, and left it to the Baldwin County Historic Development Commission, which now operates tours and other events on the grounds.
If you are staying in Fort Morgan rentals, you can sign up for a tour of the mansion and its grounds in beautiful Bon Secour. A knowledgable volunteer leads tours of the home, where you can see the bedrooms, living spaces and all the precious mementos of the Swift family. The house is a masterpiece in and of itself, but the many period pieces inside are just as beautiful and fascinating.
The home is open for tours Tuesdays and Fridays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Admission is $10 for adults, $5 for children ages 6-12, and children under age 6 get in for free. For more information, please call 251-949-5550 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. This magnificent mansion is a lovely stop when you have a vacation rental in Fort Morgan.