Sycamore Hall: Monroe’s Lost Mansion

In 1868, John Theodore Ludeling, Chief Justice of the State Supreme Court, built a mansion on Riverside Drive (known as Front Street then), at what is now Hudson Lane. It came to be known as Sycamore Hall, named (so the legend goes) for a giant sycamore tree growing on the site. After John died, local lawyer Frederick G. Hudson bought it and it became known as the Hudson residence. It was the scene of many social functions (it had a large grand ballroom) and it’s garden was known far and wide as a showpiece. Unfortunately, it burned to the ground in 1930. Frederick’s widow built a cottage on the site and continued to tend her beautiful gardens until she died. The cottage is gone and Magnolia and Hudson Terrace Apartments now stand on the site. For some great info and other pictures, come to the Ouachita Parish Public Library and ask for the book, “Sycamore Hall” by Sylvester Q. Breard.

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