For Sale | The Louisiana House that Took a Ride Down the River

Kearny-Spedale House | c. 1903 | Plaquemine, LA

(All images are courtesy of Homestead Realty)

This incredible house is a jaw-dropper, but its story is just as incredible as its appearance. Known locally as “the house that took a ride down the river,” it has been a showpiece of the Louisiana town where it stands since it was first built. And if you’re in the market for a remarkable historic home that needs some TLC, then this Grand Dame in Louisiana might be for you!

Interior Entryway, staircase, and tiled mantle

Construction began on this home in 1896 by Dr. F.J. Kearney as a wedding gift for his daughter, made of native cypress wood in Plaquemine’s heyday as a cypress milling town . Completed 7 years later in 1903, the home was so impressive that It was invited to be featured in The World’s Fair. So, in 1904, the house was rolled to the Mississippi River and loaded onto a barge where it was shipped to St Louis. After its time on display there, the house was again loaded by barge and shipped back down to Plaquemine Louisiana to be reassembled where it originally stood.

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The Kearny-Spedale House on Eden Street in the 1940s

In 1936, the house was sold to Dr. and Mrs. Spedale, a prominent local physician and his wife. The two Became widely known for their elegant dinner and garden parties that they would host at this home. In fact, to better suit their frequent guests, the Spedale’s extended the home to add additional entertaining space and a permanent valet stand where arriving guests would be greeted.

According to locals from that time, the interior of the home was immaculately kept and adorned with a renowned antique collection from all over the world. In fact, in 2014, there was an auction showcasing many of the late Mrs. Spedale’s antiques from the home.

Today, the house is for sale and ready for a new owner to bring her back to her former glory, but it will take an ambitious old house lover to tackle the project.

Some of its most interesting features are the wrap-around porches on both levels, the impressive staircase, Built-in units, many of its original fixtures, and incredible natural light. 

MLS Information:

  • 23915 Eden Street Plaquemine, LA 70764
  • 0.94 Acres
  • 5,191 Square Feet
  • 5 Bedrooms/4 Full Baths/2 Half Baths
  • Asking: $245,000
  • MLS #: 2021012425
  • For Sale by Homestead Realty, Charley Robinson 225-238-5089
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23 thoughts on “For Sale | The Louisiana House that Took a Ride Down the River”

    1. Kathleen Robinson

      This is just magnificent! Just hope and pray it is bought and restored! Hate to see such beautiful and historical homes demolished!. I had this happen to my home that I sold and the house next door that were both dated around 1900. Torn down for a gas station and parking lot. Broke my heart Too many are destroyed for the wrong reasons

  1. Oh this house is so grand and so beautiful!! I hope someone restores it and makes it the show piece it should be! I love your stories by the way.

  2. I enjoy your interesting stories of these old homes and their history, owners and more. Thank you so much. I would like to see historical homes in other parts of America as well.

  3. I have a dear friend in Georgia whose grandfather, under cover of darkness, loaded their antebellum home on a wagon and moved it across a river, burning down the bridge afterwards, to protect it from Sherman’s march! Can you imagine?

  4. I really enjoyed reading this story. I love old vintage houses. I hope whoever buys it will bring it back to that time. Thanks again for a great little piece of history.

    From Ascension Parish.

  5. Tammy Marie Gomez

    Yes, this was very interesting. My mom use to work with Dr Spedale. So this really gives a new light to things.

  6. Looks like an absolutely beautiful home could be restored to just beautiful grandeur I know it’s way out of my league but it is a beautiful home

  7. What a beautiful home. I would so love to just walk through and feel the memories she holds. Oh how I wish I had a big bank account.

  8. Susan Chandler Hines

    Absolutely gorgeous !!! What a gemstone of great worth and value !!! Would love to have it and have the money/expertise help to restore her beautifully !!!
    I was born and raised in Georgia…. in God’s beautiful and wonderful south !

  9. Great history. Love the character. Wish we could find old houses like this at affordable prices in Australia as i would love to own one and restore. Hope someone loves this house enough to buy and restore to its former glory.

  10. My wife Zoe is the niece of the late owner Dr Spedel and Ms Zoe Spedel, as a little girl she has stayed over and visited so many times there, She actually has a painting that Ms Spedel painted of the home, pictures of her and her Aunt Zoe together in the home. its pretty Awesome!!

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