Winston Place, Historic Northeast Alabama Bed and Breakfast

VALLEY HEAD, Ala. (WHNT) — One of northern Alabama’s oldest and finest bed and breakfasts offers a step back in time, courtesy of a brand new owner’s touch.

The pre-Civil War mansion, now known as Winston Place, first opened as a small cabin in 1831. However, since the mid-1990s it has become a staple of communities of Lookout Mountain and Valley Head as an event space and bed and breakfast.

The historic property now finds itself under new ownership.

Jacob Brown, a former Collinsville Elementary School teacher and administrator, officially purchased the property on July 11.

“It was over the summer, and we actually closed the other day on the 11th,” Brown said. “We went through a transition period of a few months, but we closed everything the other day.”

Brown said the Winstons were the owners of this original cabin, hence the name “Winston Place” it bears now. He explained that the family patriarch was a Tennessee lawyer, who was instrumental in bringing the railroad to DeKalb County.

The hut built in 1831 began with only two rooms and a dogtrot in the center. It now stands with three separate rooms for rent, as well as a suite. Learn more about available rooms here.

“A lot of additions were made after the Civil War ended,” Brown explained. “Around 1868, that’s when the house looked a bit like it does today.”

The cabin’s original kerosene lantern still hangs in the hall.

The property was welcomed into the National Register of Historic Places in March 1987. Prior owners Jim Brown, Jim and Leslie Bunch, converted the property into a bed and breakfast in the 1990s, making the business nearly 30 years old.

Brown said his goal with the property was to “expand and grow.”

He explained that the mansion had undergone a “light refresh” with updates to the original hard pine floors, curtains, paint, furniture and mattresses. Brown said he and his team also revamped the entire breakfast menu and even added new beds to several rooms.

Brown told News 19 his experience as the owner of Winston Place has been great so far.

“It’s been very welcoming and very positive,” Brown said. “The guests are super excited; we have many loyal customers.

Libby Capps, the property’s chief operating officer, said that in just 11 days since Brown purchased the property, they’ve had 21 reservations with about 50 people.

Capps said they hope to host local musicians, a massage therapist, a local art gallery and auction, and movies on the property’s lawn very soon. She said they hoped the first film they could act would be 1939’s ‘Gone with the Wind’.

She noted that Winston Place isn’t just a place for out-of-state or county visitors.

“We want to bring Valley Head back to the front porch of this place, to the backyard of this place,” Capps said. “We really want everyone to feel comfortable coming in, sitting on the porch, walking by and handing them a glass of tea or lemonade.”

Winston Place is available now for guests wishing to stay at the Bed & Breakfast or book private events like weddings and other special occasions. Learn more about Winston Place at winstonplacebnb.com.

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