Haile House at Kanapaha Plantation


Haile House at Kanapaha Plantation



8500 SW Archer Road
Gainesville, FL 32608






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South Carolina’s Thomas and Serena Haile moved to Florida in the 1850s. Members of the Haile-Chestnut clan purchased land in the Kanapaha area of Alachua County. The 1860 census indicates that Thomas Haile owned 66 slaves. The Haile house included six ground-floor rooms, with two larger ones upstairs. Poor crops forced Haile into bankruptcy in 1868 and most of his property was sold. The family continued to live at Kanapaha until around 1900. Completed in 1856, the house stands as a testament to the skill and expertise of the enslaved craftsmen who built it, though the 18 slave cabins have not survived. The Hailes had the unusual habit of writing on the walls of their home, and over 12,500 words, with the oldest dating to the 1850s, are visible in almost every room and closet of the main house.