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Visiting Rowan Oak, the Home of William Faulkner, in Oxford, Mississippi

Rowan Oak, the Home of William Faulkner, in Oxford, Mississippii

Rowan Oak, William Faulkner’s former home in Oxford, Mississippi, was an inspiration for much of his work. Explore this home of one of the South’s greatest writers.

Rowan Oak — Home of William Faulkner

Rowan Oak, Home of William Faulkner

The Greek Revival house, built in the 1840s, was in complete disrepair when William Faulkner purchased it in the 1930s. Faulkner did many of the renovations himself and named the home “Rowan Oak” after the rowan tree, a symbol of security and peace.

The home and surrounding area proved very inspiring for Faulkner. Local stories of Native Americans, runaway slaves, colonels, and spinsters gave his writing character.

While here, he won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1949 and the Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award for A Fable in 1954.

Faulkner lived at the home with his wife and children until his death in 1962. In 1972, his daughter sold the house to The University of Mississippi (Ole Miss).

Touring the Home

Library of William Faulkner House

A tour of the home gives a glimpse into the life of the Faulkners. The rooms are decorated with paintings by Faulkner’s mother and the family’s own furniture.

On the first floor, you’ll see the dining room with the patio where Faulkner would write; the library with bookshelves he built himself; the parlor that was for special occasions, including Faulkner’s own funeral; Faulkner’s writing room that he built onto the back of the house with the plot outline of A Fable written on the wall; and the modern kitchen where Faulkner wrote in the winter because it was the warmest room in the house.

Faulkner's Writing Room with the outline of The Fable written on the wall

On the second floor, you’ll see Faulkner’s bedroom, his wife Estelle’s bedroom, their daughter Jill’s bedroom, and the children’s bedroom for Estelle’s children and their nieces and nephews.

The Grounds of Rowan Oak

Barn at Rowan Oak

Around the grounds, there is more to discover.

The cedar walkway leading up to the home was planted after the yellow fever epidemic because it was believed cedars cleansed the air.

The concentric circle harden at the front of the house was originally a maze garden that became overgrown. Faulkner liked the garden better overgrown and left it that way. The grounds also contain an English knot garden and a scuppernong arbor.

English Knot Garden

Behind the home is the servant’s quarters; the beloved family caretaker Caroline Barr (who they called “Mammy Callie”) lived here. A barn and a stable are also located behind the home.

Servant's Quarters at Rowan Oak

The original detached kitchen Faulkner converted into a smokehouse in the 1930s since they’d added an indoor kitchen to the house in the early 1900s.

The Baily Woods Trail

The Baily Woods Trail connects Rowan Oak to the University Museum. The trail is about 0.6 miles long and takes about 20 minutes to walk.

Visiting Rowan Oak

Back entrance to Rowan Oak

Admission for touring Rowan Oak costs $5 for visitors 12 and over. Tours are free to Ole Miss students with a valid student ID and UM Museum members.

The grounds of Rowan Oak are free to explore during daylight hours.

During the summer (June 1 through July 31), the home and grounds are open Tuesdays through Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sundays from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m.

During the rest of the year, the home and grounds are open Tuesdays through Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Sundays from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Rowan Oak is closed on Mondays and on July 4, Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, Christmas, New Year’s Eve, and New Year’s Day.

Where to Stay in Oxford, Mississippi

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More Mississippi Itineraries

Find even more fun destinations to visit in Mississippi! Check out these top posts to help plan your Mississippi vacation.

Ready to visit Oxford, Mississippi? Plan your trip with these tips.

  • Book your flight: Find the cheapest flights using Skyscanner, my favorite flight search engine.
  • Find Accommodation: You can find top hotels in Oxford using
  • Get Packing: Make sure you’ve packed everything you need with my packing list resources.



Visiting Rowan Oak, the Home of William Faulkner, in Oxford, Mississippi

Have you visited William Faulkner’s Rowan Oak in Oxford, Mississippi? Let me know in the comments!

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