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Look inside to see our beautiful city and walk through time with historic photos of Autauga County.
Members are the foundation of the ACHA's community of support. Download a New Member Form and join us in preserving our rich history! Click on image to download form or JOIN NOW online.
Volunteers help by setting up museum displays, conducting tours, performing research and maintaining grounds and property. We also have a number of exciting projects in the works, and we need your help.
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The Autauga County Heritage Association is a group of people who share a common interest in the history of Autauga County, who strive to create historical interest and educate the community about the benefits of preservation and the significance of our own heritage.
The Daniel Pratt mansion being torn down in 1961 was the impetus of the ACHA forming some years later. It was after more than a decade of regret at having lost forever one our our most treasured of historic homes, the Prattville Study Club, then a group of 50 women, initiated the establishment of a county historical society. In 1976, our nations bi-centennial year, the Autauga County Heritage Association's first president, Evelyn Striplin, was elected from among the 309 charter members of the association.
Welcome to the 1848 Greek Revival style home known as the McWilliams-Smith-Rice House. It is classified as a one and a half story home. In 1995, Charles Rice and Mary Wood Rice Waite donated the home to the city of Prattville for a museum, operated by the Autauga County Heritage Association. The Prattaugan Museum is filled with a varied collection of artifacts and objects pertaining to Autauga County; a county that is one year older than the state of Alabama. You will also find an extensive archives in our museum where visitors are welcome to research family histories and other historic documents. Our hours are Tuesday - Friday 10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. and Saturday 10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.
This display includes a large WWII plaque with the names of gin shop workers who went to war, actual fragment bombs that were produced at Continental Gin Company in Prattville, along with information on the women who built them. The WWII display is highlighted by the "E for Excellence" award given to Continental Gin Company, by the Bureau of Ordinance, for their excellence in production. There are several photographs, war ration cards, telegrams, and newspaper articles.
Visit us often to find out the latest happenings within the Autauga County Heritage Association and new exhibits in the Prattaugan Museum. We receive new items throughout the year and are always working to get them on display. If you are interested in assisting our museum staff and volunteers, come join us.
Premier Event Venue in the River Region!
A beautiful antebellum house built circa 1840's. Once called "The Montgomery Place," the mansion is now known as Buena Vista. This outstanding example of Greek Revival architectural style is typical of the homes Daniel Pratt constructed in Georgia prior to his moving to Autauga County in 1833. The beautiful circular cantilevered stairway, the double doors with fan lights, the second story balcony and the elaborately carved cornices and ceiling medallions are all found in Pratt-designed homes. The name "Buena Vista" was given to the home by Fred and Katherine Whittaker who purchased the home in 1937 on finding it used as a hay barn. Over a period of years, they lovingly restored the home to its former grandeur. In 1982, Union Camp Corporation purchased the home and partnered with the Autauga County Heritage Association (ACHA). In 2006, International Paper, the next owner, gifted the historic home to the ACHA. Since that time, many elegant weddings, receptions and dinner parties have shared the southern ambiance of days gone by with their guest.
Available for tours Tuesday 10 - 2, or by appointment.
Available by appointment for Weddings, Receptions, Dinners, Luncheons, Parties, Bridal and Baby Showers, Anniversaries, Corporate Events, Business Seminars and Luncheons. Perfect setting for Prom, Cotillion and Graduation Photo Shoots.
For information on renting the Mansion:
Darlene Leistner Buenavista@autaugahistory.org
(334) 365-3690 or 334-361-0961
641 CO RD 4 E
Prattville, Alabama 36066
Alabama Bicentennial Grand Finale will be on December 14, 2019 in front of the State Capitol. Autauga County Heritage Association will be ginning cotton on our Pratt Cotton Gin in front of the Capitol.
Visit Alabama200.org for more information.
The Autauga County Heritage Association
4th Quarter General Membership Meeting
Sunday, December 8th at 2PM
249 South Washington Street (Smith-Pratt-Cooper house)
Make your plans to attend the Autauga County Heritage Association’s General Membership Meeting on Sunday afternoon, December 8th at 2 pm. Please note our change of venue as we have been graciously invited into one of the earliest and most historic residences in The District, the (Smith-Pratt-Cooper house: c. 1845), located at 249 Washington St. This home, presently situated on the corner of Washington & Main, was home to famed Alabama Geologist, Eugene Allen Smith, for whom the Museum of Natural History at the University of Alabama is named.
Everyone is invited to this free event where Historian, Ann Boutwell will be sharing the fascinating history of this lovely home’s storied past.
What a wonderful way to imagine what Christmas might have been like in one of our beautiful downtown historic homes! Light refreshments will be served. (Photo Credits to The University of Alabama Libraries Special Collections)