Actual Factual Georgia: Who built the Tate House?

Q: Do you have any details about the Tate House? Who built it, and why? What is its history?

A: The incredibly pink and somewhat palatial Tate House has been a part of north Georgia for more than 90 years, although its namesake family were among the first settlers to Native American land in the early 1800s.

The Tate House, which was constructed from a rare pink Georgia marble in the 1920s, was built by Colonel Sam Tate, who personally picked out matching pink pieces to use on the home. Tate had descended from Samuel Tate, who moved to the area around where the home now stands in 1834, according to the Tate House’s website. His son Stephen began mining the marble found in the area just north of Ball Ground and southeast of Jasper, and his son, who folks referred to as Colonel Sam, “consolidated the marble interests and gained control by 1917.”

He then built the Tate House, where he lived until he died in 1938.

By 1955, the last of the Tates had left the home, which fell into disrepair and was unoccupied before Ann Lard found the home in 1974. She began a 10-year-long project to restore and beautify the 19,000-square-foot Tate House.

The marble continues throughout the home – there’s a reason it’s called the Pink Palace on the National Register of Historic Places — where it’s used for the floors and mantles on four fireplaces. There are six fountains on the property, which has become a popular wedding venue.

The Tate House is grandly decorated for Christmas, and holiday tours are scheduled throughout this month. Bistro lunch tours ($30) are planned through Dec. 17, Candlelight Music Tours ($25) are scheduled for Dec. 5, 12 and 19, and Saturday Christmas Tours ($15 for adults, $5 children 5-10, free for children under 5) will take place on Dec. 6, 13 and 20.

Information: 770-735-3122, or

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If you’re new in town or have questions about this special place we call home, ask us! E-mail Andy Johnston at q& or call 404-222-2002.

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