From its humble beginnings as a frontier log house, Azalee Plantation has led a storied and sometimes troubling existence, first by its transformation into one of Northwest Louisiana’s largest antebellum cotton plantations, then into a multi-generation cattle ranch, and finally to its current use as an elegant outdoor wedding venue. Situated on approximately 1,400 acres of rolling hill pastures with beautiful stands of hardwoods, the venue consists of the historic pre-Civil War plantation home along with extensive landscaping of azaleas, camelias, sasanquas, hydrangeas, and confederate jasmine. The venue grounds are also dotted with mature pecan, magnolia, black walnut, cedar and oak trees along with numerous crepe myrtles. New Orleans style courtyards flank either side of the home for that touch of southern charm that is sure to enchant your guests as they stroll along the brick walkway to the ceremony area. An evening wedding practically decorates itself with a stunning sunset view that paints a golden hour glow across the beautiful pastures. An inviting 5-acre pond lies just behind the plantation home.
The plantation house is available to the wedding party to relax and get ready for the ceremony on the plantation grounds. The house is a rare example of late Federal and Greek Revival design decorated with beautiful period furniture. The formal parlor and dining room are perfect spots for bridal photos. A bridal suite is available in the plantation’s master bedroom and includes a full bath, 14-foot ceilings, original hardwood floors, and a beautiful full length mirror to view that stunning dress. A rustic groom’s suite is located upstairs featuring the original log construction and includes a bathroom, dressing and sitting room. An outdoor patio, nicknamed the “Party Patio”, is located on the back side of the house leading to the pool area and features an outdoor fireplace, brick floors, and cafe lighting. The “Party Patio” is the perfect place to serve food to your guests or dance to the tunes of your favorite DJ. Azalee Plantation is the perfect setting for a classic southern wedding.
The original 4-room log house was constructed in 1842 by brothers, James Jackson Bryan and Joseph David Bryan, from Twiggs County, Georgia. After each brother was married, Joseph Bryan built a new house nearby; however, that house did not survive the Civil War. The original lady of the house, Mary Sheppard Bryan, named the plantation Saffronia after the small yellow wildflowers that still adorn the pastures every spring. In the early 1850s, the house was enlarged to its current dimensions and orientation and was converted from a frontier style log house into a proper plantation home. According to the National Register of Historic Places, “the Bryan House is of local architectural significance within the context of northern Louisiana as a rare example of domestic log construction. As such it exemplifies the folk architectural tradition of the Scots-Irish/Appalachian Uplanders who were by far the principal pioneer settlement group in the region. The house is also locally significant because with its late Federal/Greek Revival styling, it is one of very few buildings remaining to represent Webster Parish’s earliest architectural history. The Bryan House is one of only about a dozen buildings (all residences) that survive from the late Federal/Greek Revival period. As such, it is part of the parish’s earliest patrimony.