This house was built circa 1854 by Selma businessman George O. Baker. The Neo-Classic architecture features a front porch with pillars and a small cupola that was saved after a fire destroyed the second floor. Lincrusta, a wall covering made to simulate hand-tooled leather, highlights the front hall and dining room. The home’s features are said to be copied from Baker’s ancestral home in Philadelphia, and he brought craftsmen from there to build it. Baker was a mining engineer with stakes in both coal and gold mines, but he is most famously known for developing uses for cottonseed oil. He founded Selma’s first cottonseed oil mill. He was also very involved with community activities. He served as school board president, bank director, and supported construction of Selma’s Academy of Music and Hotel Albert.
The grounds of the Baker home were the scene of a skirmish during the Battle of Selma near the end of the Civil War. A wounded Union soldier crawled under the staircase and died during the skirmish. They say the blood is still visible under those stairs today. Through the years, there have been numerous reports of paranormal activity in this house. The Baker home is featured in one of the videos in the Alabama’s Ghost Trail (provided below).
The Baker home is a contributing property to Selma’s “Old Town Historic District” that’s listed on the National Register of Historic Places (NRHP). The house is located at 600 Dallas Avenue in Selma (GPS coordinates 32.407572,-87.026608).
This is a private residence – drive by only.
Sources: 1) selmapilgrimage.com; 2) NRHP Form for the Selma “Old Town Historic District”.