Stable Quarter (Granny Milly's cabin)

Mansion & Grounds

The Stable Yard, adjacent to the mansion's South Yard, was the location of the home for an enslaved individuals who either worked in the garden or the stables--based on it close proximity to thee following sites:  the two-acre garden, which provided food for the main house; a stable area and carriage house for horses and carriages of the Madisons and their many guests; and a craft complex where coopers and carpenters worked. The skilled slaves who worked in these areas also lived near their work. The name "Granny Milly" comes from an early 19th century account of a visit to a slave quarter near the mansion by General Lafayette (see more here).

The home excavated by archaeologists is typical of most slaves quarters for the time period--consisting of a log structure with a clay floor, stick and mud chimney and a sub-floor pit used to storing root crops.  This home was in contrast with the adjacent South Yard structures.

In 2014, we reconstructed this cabin as part of a participant-driven log cabin workshop. Today, the archaeological site is marked with the reconstructed cabin/.

Further up from the Stable Quarter archaeologists found evidence for the Stable in the form of horseshoes, horseshoe nails, and bridle pieces.  Nearby were found areas yielding iron plates for wagons and carriages and other hardware suggestive of a carriage house. 


Archaeologists standing at the corner of the Stable Quarter structure revealed through excavations.  The brick pads are the hearths for the structure and provide the overall dimensions for the home as 20x16ft.

Image of reconstructed log-cabin (2014).

Plans for log cabin structure to be built in 2014 program. Drawing by Willie Graham