Last Updated on July 7, 2023

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The antebellum homes of Natchez, MS are a must-see on any visit to the South. Pre-Civil War Natchez was teeming with millionaires heavily involved in the cotton business. The city’s location on the shore of the Mississippi River provided easy shipping for their crops and supplies.

These wealthy citizens of the city built expansive homes – each new one rivaling the last in an almost “who can out-do who” competition. The details in construction and exquisite furnishings are impressive. Due to the early surrender of Natchez to the Union army, these glorious mansions have remained largely intact.

And what better way to enjoy a visit to this historic city than to stay in a historic carriage house that’s been converted into a one-bedroom rental?

The Terrace Carriage House Vacation Rental in Natchez

Cozy Sitting Area (Photo Credit Lana Van Cleave)
A great nook for coffee or enjoying a good book (Photo Credit: Lana Van Cleave)

My husband and I were traveling to Florida for a beach vacation and opted for a quick one-day stay in Natchez, Mississippi on our way from Oklahoma. We searched through VRBO listings and were most intrigued by a one-bedroom carriage house dating back to 1844. We could not resist staying in this magnificent piece of Natchez history.

The one-bedroom, one-bath Terrace Carriage house sits behind the owners’ home, very close to the downtown area of Natchez.

The property was initially owned by famous steamboat captain, Thomas P. Leathers. He was quite well known for being colorful in both personality and appearance. Yet, he was also a very successful businessman. His steamboats navigated the New Orleans to Vicksburg trade route, having completed 401 trips without incident. Leathers was inducted into the National Rivers Hall of Fame in 1990 for his contribution to our nation’s rivers.

The property’s current owners, Jim and Geoffrey, moved to Natchez upon retirement. They purchased the property in 2018 and converted the carriage house into a vacation rental. While there, we were fortunate to meet them both, finding them to be warm and engaging.

A Cozy Kitchen and Sitting Area

Stepping through the entrance door, we were immediately struck by the brick floors and walls. It was evident that we were indeed standing in a historic carriage house. We could easily envision horse-drawn carriages being pulled in and stored for the evening.

The house’s kitchen is small but beautifully decorated, quite functional, opening to a cozy sitting area. The wall-to-wall windows on two sides provide plenty of natural light to this space. The kitchen was supplied with coffee, snacks, and drinks. There was even a bottle of wine awaiting our arrival.

Bright Intimate Living Room

Living Room (Photo Credit Lana Van Cleave)
The cozy living room is a comfy space to enjoy morning coffee or relax after a day exploring Natchez (Photo Credit: Lana Van Cleave)

The living room area was so charming. Brick walls carried through from the kitchen/sitting area, and the flooring was a rich wood covered with area rugs. Furnishings were comfortable, and the décor was an eclectic collection of pieces that Jim received through inheritance or acquired in his travels.

Several books provided details of Natchez’s history and its antebellum homes. They were perfect for an afternoon or evening perusal. Opposite sides of the room had large windows with heavy drapes, catching direct sunlight if opened or creating an intimate space when closed.

Antique Furnishings in the Bedroom

Bedroom of historic carriage house vacation rental in Natchez
The bedroom is perfect for a couple with room for a child as well (Photo Credit: Lana Van Cleave)

The single bedroom, beautifully furnished with antiques, was accentuated by brilliant blue fabrics. The room includes a queen bed and a daybed. It could easily sleep three but was perfect for two.

A Delightful Terrace for Morning Coffee or Evening Cocktail

Carriage house vacation rental in Natchez
The carriage house and its private courtyard (Photo courtesy of VRBO)

The owners partitioned off part of their backyard to provide an outdoor sitting area for carriage house guests. It’s a lovely place to enjoy a cocktail or glass of wine before dinner. Or sip a cup of coffee before beginning a day of exploration.

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Antebellum Homes Within Walking Distance

Location, location, location. The ideally situated carriage house is within walking distance of several of the area’s iconic antebellum homes. In fact, it is just across the street from Stanton Hall, a stunning, opulent abode with giant oaks surrounding the property. In addition, it houses the Carriage House Restaurant, a favorite dining venue of locals and visitors alike.

The Choctaw House is only a short stroll from the Terrace Carriage House. And less than a 10-minute drive will take you to Longwood, a grand home that’s been left unfinished since the Civil War. Equally close is Auburn, the mansion with a stunning unsupported floating spiral staircase. Due to the carriage house’s prime location, many of these historic homes are within short driving distance.  

Walk to the Bluff for a Stunning Sunset

Sunset over the Mighty Mississippi (Photo Credit Lana Van Cleave)
Sunset over the Mighty Mississippi (Photo Credit Lana Van Cleave)

Restaurants and shopping are also found a few blocks away. Natchez boasts numerous restaurants, coffee shops, and bars, offering various types of cuisines.

We enjoyed strolling a few blocks down to the bluff overlooking the mighty Mississippi River to watch the sunset. This is a not-to-be-missed treat in Natchez. The amber and orange glow of the sun reflecting on the river’s calm waters is a most satisfying way to spend an evening. There is a walking path on the bluff and numerous benches to sit and absorb nature’s splendor.

This quaint property was the perfect complement and home base from which to visit the historical treasures of Natchez. It was a joy to visit this historic city with the added privilege of staying in a lovely historic place.

Popular Things to do in Natchez

Although our one-day stay didn’t allow much time for tours and other activities, here are some of the most popular things to do in Natchez:

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1 Comment
  • Phyl Doppelt
    August 26, 2022

    Lana,

    That was fascinating! I enjoyed your article and I am happy for you,
    that having survived 43 tax seasons, you are now having so much fun! Keep on traveling and writing about these interesting and fascinating places.

    Phyl.