This house was built circa 1852 by Dr. Henry Talbird, second president of Howard College. It was sold in 1856 to Isaac Billingsley and his wife, Ann Jane Moffett Billingsley. The Billingsley’s were prominent members of the Marion community. Isaac Billingsley was a wealthy planter and one of the largest slave owners in Perry County. He served on the Board of Trustees of Howard College from 1855-1869. Ann Jane Billingsley was one of the first nine graduates of Judson College. This house remained in the Billingsley family until 1994. Today, it is owned by Kenneth Waite and his wife, Ethel Billingsley Waite. Ethel’s paternal great, great grandfather was a slave of Isaac Billingsley.
The Talbird-Moore-Waite House is a contributing property to the West Marion Historic District that’s listed on the National Register of Historic Places (NRHP). It is also one of the historic homes included on the Discover Perry County Audio Tour. This house is located on Washington Street in front of Marion Military Institute, formerly the Howard College campus (GPS coordinates 32.624106,-87.317853).
This is a private residence – drive by only.
Sources: 1) NRHP “West Marion Historic District” Registration Form; 2) Perry County Heritage, Volume II, prepared by The Book Committee and Friends of the Perry County Historical and Preservation Society; 3) Discover Perry County Audio Tour (www.perrycountyalabamachamber.com/discover-perry-county/).