Old Governor's Mansion in Milledgeville, Georgia, with holiday decorations

The Old Governor's Mansion in Milledgeville, Georgia

An Antebellum Christmas in Milledgeville

Ever wonder how Georgians celebrated the holidays before and during the Civil War? Milledgeville, Georgia, brings that world to life with the Old Governor’s Mansion. Make a weekend of it with a stay at the Antebellum Inn and dinner downtown.

Christmas tree at the Old Governor's Mansion in Milledgeville, Georgia. Photo by Maryann Bates
Old Governor's Mansion in Milledgeville, Georgia. Photo by Maryann Bates

Southern Holiday Traditions Tour at the Old Governor’s Mansion

Antebellum Christmas at the Mansion transforms the mansion into a Christmas wonderland. Take a step back in time and see how the elite of Georgia celebrated this holiday.

Tours begin Sunday, Nov. 24, 2019, and are held on the hour, Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. and Sundays from 2 p.m. – 4 p.m. until Dec. 22. The mansion will be closed for Thanksgiving Nov. 25-29. Candlelight tours also take place December 7, 14 and 17, 2019, at 6 and 7 p.m. Normal admission rates apply.

Three fun facts to get you excited about visiting:

  • The rotunda Christmas tree is decorated according to Charles Dickens’ short story “A Christmas Tree,” with 1,500 candles and 1,600 lights. Additionally, 2,800 crystal icicles and ornaments made from natural materials found in the yard or around the house deck the Tannenbaum.
  • Decorations throughout the home are made with large amounts of live greenery, fresh fruits and other materials that would have been available within the household or around the grounds. Fruits, including the newly introduced exotic pineapple, were used in the decorations show the wealth of the family.
  • The children’s room includes a gum drop tree and a traditional tree, but also a ribbon cob web. Usually on Christmas eve, the children and their parents would “web” the room with various colors of ribbon. On Christmas morning, the children would be assigned a color and follow the ribbon through the maze to find their presents left by Santa.


The Antebellum Inn in Milledgeville features period-style Christmas decorations
The Antebellum Inn in Milledgeville features period-style Christmas decorations

Christmas at Antebellum Inn Bed & Breakfast

Christmas décor in the common area of the Antebellum Inn and elaborate outdoor decorations ring in the season. You’ll feel history come alive in the 1890 inn, featuring period-style rooms with Wi-Fi, luxurious linens and private baths. Breakfast includes farm-fresh eggs, bacon, sausage, jams and fruit. Don’t miss the famous raspberry French toast and homemade quiches, as well.

A romantic dinner at Aubri Lane's in Milledgeville, Georgia
A romantic dinner at The Reel Grill in Milledgeville, Georgia

Dine Downtown

Located in downtown Milledgeville, the family will enjoy a delicious contemporary Southern dinner in a truly unique setting. The Reel Grill sits inside what was once the 1884 Milledgeville Banking Company. If you happen to escape to Milledgeville for a date night, then be sure to make reservations for a private dinner inside the bank-vault-turned-wine-cellar.

Blackbird Coffee in Milledgeville, Georgia
Blackbird Coffee in Milledgeville, Georgia

Afterward, stroll down the street to Blackbird Coffee for a seasonal sip and a snack. With their expanding food and dessert menu, Blackbird Coffee has quickly become a destination location and downtown Milledgeville gem. Inside their roaster café, you will also find hand-dipped ice cream selections, craft beer and wine. Have you ever had a Beer Float? Or a scoop of vanilla ice cream drizzled with a fresh shot of espresso and Irish cream? They serve them all day long.

Published: September 2019
Written by: Lesli Peterson