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Herndon Home

Atlanta, Georgia
County of Fulton.
587 University Place, NW
National Register Number: 00000261
Resource type: Building.
Property type: Domestic - single dwelling. The threat level was Watch in
Congressional District: GA-5 Certified Local Government: YES
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Statement of Significance (as of designation - February 16, 2000):
This Classical Revival mansion, built in 1910, was the home of Alonzo Franklin Herndon and his family. The founder of the Atlanta Life Insurance Company, one of the largest Black insurance companies in the United States, Herndon had been born into slavery, but rose to wealth and influence. His life reflects the ideal of the American dream, that anyone can be successful in this country with hard work and determination. Adrienne Herndon, Alonzo's wife, designed the residence, but passed away a few months after its completion. Their son Norris was influential in the family's enterprises and he succeeded his father in running the Atlanta Life Insurance Company. The Herndon family attained the hightest level of Black society and their home illustrates the family's aspirations and lifestyle, and also represents the culture of wealthy African Americans during the first half of the twentieth century.

On August 1, 2005, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported that water from a leaky roof has caused damage to the home. Heavy rains have caused some plaster walls to erode, damaging wall paper and some of the house's collections and furnishings. The house museum was without staff for 3 months earlier in the year, during which time the damage took place. Estimates to repair/restore the house are around $60,000.

Closed to the public in 2005, permanent staff dismissed. Deferred maintenance (roof leaks) has resulted in water damage to the interior of the house.

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