" they came upon a once grand house "
Barrington Hall, North/front side, circa 1842, Roswell, Georgia, USA - Credit: Galen Parks Smith
The grand houses of the southern states are associated with European colonisers, the plantations which made their fortunes, and the terrible reliance on African slave labour.
Doric columns in the neoclassical style
The neoclassical style – with its white wash and doric columns – is known in the USA as antebellum, literally 'before the war', in reference to the American Civil War. Tara, the house in Gone With The Wind, is a famous example of these plantation homes, as is Barrington Hall in Roswell, Georgia.
" Chattel slaves had once trod those boards bearing food and drink on silver trays. "
A chattel slave
was one owned outright by the household. The idea is reminiscent of the yoked and harnessed slaves on page 96.
" Fine Morris paper on the walls "
Pink and poppy wallpaper design, circa 1881, by William Morris
Fine wooden molding around the ceiling in a dilapidated 18th-century house in Bayou St. John, New Orleans - Credit: Infrogmation of New Orleans
" Coming through the canebrake into the road "
Canebrake is an area of land with a dense growth of cane, sugarcane, bamboo or similar plants.